5 very clear reasons why businesses that support their communities through employee volunteering never look back
Modern consciousness and the critical need to sustain the World brings an expectation on corporations to take responsibility. We hear the term Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) bandied about and it feels like a heavy undertaking for most businesses but it really does not have to be. It simply calls for a commitment to make basic changes and embed these into your values, no matter how large or small your company is. Those that are visibly making the commitment see great return for their business and one of easiest changes to make is to support meaningful employee volunteering.
We're very happy to have Steve Mitchell join Vtues to connect with businesses in Gloucestershire to engage them in Employee Volunteering.
Steve has vast experience as a 'connector' for both Business In The Community (BITC) and Lloyds Bank working with a wide range of charities to solve their biggest problems by connecting local businesses in CSR activities.
If your company currently supports Employee Volunteering and are looking for new projects or you are looking to implement a ESV program where your employees find their own opportunities then the Vtues platform is ideal for you: https://www.vtues.com/employer-sponsored-volunteering.
It's great for your Company to have your contributions validated and celebrated and to reward your employees! We have many charities in the area that require skilled volunteers or are looking for teams to engage in fundraising. We look forward to helping!
Next month we launch Vtues for the purpose of connecting our first charity and CIC members with socially-conscious businesses and sponsored volunteers. We will reach those in Worcestershire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Warwickshire, Wiltshire, West Midlands and Bristol but will very quickly expand into the rest of the UK as we develop reward systems for individuals and companies who give their time and energy.
Over the last few weeks we have engaged with so many great organisations who focus on important issues including nature preservation, domestic and sexual abuse, animal welfare, disability, community, waste-reduction and child protection. All of whom depend on volunteers to achieve their purpose.
I personally volunteer time for a number of charities including, very recently, The Farm Animal Sanctuary (patron Joanna Lumley OBE) with my partner. The Charity was founded by Janet Taylor in 1993 and over the last 25 years she has rescued many thousands of animals from abuse and neglect with 500+ currently under her protection. We give general support including tidying, gardening and sorting out donated items to sell. We have also raised money from organising a car boot sale and offered our individual skills as required.
Now, the Farm Animal Sanctuary is situated less than 2 miles from our home yet, despite our physical closeness and the fact that we are dedicated animal supporters, it took us nearly 3 years to reach out to them. For all of that time we had been subject to critical barriers that had prevented us from helping sooner.
The first barrier was that there had been no communication channel through which to fully fix the Sanctuary in our consciousness, the second was that the opportunity to volunteer there had to be sought out with effort from ourselves and the third was that we would need to define and carve-out time from our busy lives in order to help.
There is no fault here on either ours or the Charity’s behalf. These awareness and time barriers exist universally and are reflected on in a number of sector studies. The latest Community Life Survey conducted by DCMS (a government survey of over 10,000 representative participants across the UK) revealed that more than 66% of 25 – 65 year olds do not regularly or formally volunteer because of work commitments. Additionally, 24% of those who do not volunteer said they don’t know of any groups to help or haven’t heard about any opportunities.
I am deeply inspired and excited that we are now on the verge of overcoming these barriers and Vtues exists for this reason. We have the opportunity to connect a huge network of volunteers, charities, social enterprises and businesses to not only drive up awareness of causes like Janet’s but to allow folks to easily help around their existing commitments through matched ‘micro-volunteering’ and paid volunteering leave from supporting employers.