Staff Volunteer Program Cultivates Collaboration, Builds Community
“In addition to furthering Philabundance’s organizational mission, staff employee volunteer programs have been proven to provide opportunities for employee development, encourage teamwork, improve communication, build brand awareness and improve employee retention,” says Manager of Direct Programs Hilary Stiebel, who also co-leads a new Philabundance initiative called the Philabundance Staff Volunteer Program.
The employee-organized program is designed to increase collaboration among Philabundance colleagues while also increasing the positive impact employees make in the Delaware Valley, thus working toward our mission to “end hunger forever.”
A committee of five to 10 employees coordinate the program, rotating the responsibility of coordinating one event for staff to participate in every quarter of the year. Depending on the activity, staff can take a paid half or full-day off to volunteer. To date, Philabundance employees have collaborated with Mill Creek Farm, WHYY, Ronald McDonald House, Reading Olympics and Career Wardrobe through the program.
“Mill Creek Farm was my favorite staff volunteer experience so far,” says Member Capacity Building Assistant Manager Lindsey Ricker. “We deal with food access issues every day but sometimes neglect to think about where food really comes from. It was nice to get outside and be a part of the farming process.”
The next volunteer activity will be the American Cancer Society (ACS) “Bike-a-thon Bridge to the Beach” with the Food Bank of South Jersey in June where staff will bike ride from the Benjamin Franklin Bridge, in Philadelphia, to Atlantic City and raise awareness and money for the American Cancer Society.
“As the program moves forward we hope to get every employee involved,” says Community Food Programs Field Coordinator Emily Glick. “By offering a variety of options, we think all staff will be able to support another cause they truly believe in and help better our community beyond their day-to-day work.”