A new trend is picking up steam in the corporate world, and it’s giving employees a chance to make a difference in as little as an hour at a time. Businesses from coast to coast are looking at ways to get their employees more engaged with their communities while boosting their image at the same time. If you’re such an employer, or just looking to make a difference while working your normal 9-5, here are a few ideas to get you started.
Make a direct impact.
The National Wildlife Federation supports corporate employee volunteer programs, including creating outdoor classrooms at schools, restoring parks and planting trees, creating wildlife habitats within your community and sharing your expertise with students as part of their Eco-Schools USA program. Another group organization suitable for corporate volunteers is Project Sunshine, where in addition to creating care packages for pediatric hospital patients, you and your colleagues can execute themed parties in hospitals with a full day of arts and crafts, face painting, and other fun activities with patients and their families. For weekend outings that involve the whole office, Habitat for Humanity is a great resource for teambuilding projects that make an immediate, meaningful impact.
Share your professional talent.
A recent article by America’s Charities® suggests that having an employee volunteer program can potentially save thousands of dollars in reduced employee turnover. You can help put your employees’ skills to best use with organizations like the Taproot Foundation, which connects individual volunteers and companies with opportunities to support their communities by sharing professional expertise. For construction, design and architecture firms, a group like Journeyman International can connect you with ways to impact humanitarian projects around the world. For the medical community, you can partner with Doctors Without Borders. And for a searchable database of opportunities based on professional skills, catchafire.org is a great place to start.
Volunteer on the job.
A growing number of businesses are allowing, and even encouraging, employees to spend a portion of their working hours to Create The Good. The idea is to keep workers happy, which reduces turnover, while also making a positive impact on the communities in which they operate. The positive press has a beneficial impact as well. Points of Light is an organization which helps businesses facilitate these volunteer initiatives, directing participants to hundreds of different opportunities. They also offer a corporate service council which your business can join to access resources and share best practices for volunteerism.
Find more opportunities for corporate volunteering with this simple search, and enter keywords “corporate” or “group.”