This is the fifth post in our “Bite-sized CSR” blog series surrounding our 2010 Corporate Responsibility Report, where we’ll pull out little snippets and case studies from across the 100+ pages of our new report.
Although we love cleaning up parks and giving out pairs of shorts, the real strength of our employee volunteer program is the opportunity to leverage professional skills like legal, IT, marketing, and finance to make a difference. Of course, these are skills that I myself am still in the process of developing – hence, the shorts!
However, in Chandler, Arizona, Kate Nason (a 10-year Intel veteran and senior financial manager, pictured) talked to me about the value of skills-based volunteering. Kate started out using her Friday lunchtimes to read to kids in schools, and is now a non-profit board member on TWO organizations here in the valley of the sun; the Ryan House (board pictured below), which provides care for children with life-threatening diseases, and the Phoenix chapter of the Fresh Start Women’s Foundation, which “empowers women to transform their lives through engagement and education” by offering low or no-cost courses and services such as child care to women going through transitional periods in their lives. Using her finance background, Kate helped Fresh Start develop an online financial fitness workshop designed to help women become financially independent and self-sufficient. She emphasizes:
“These are the skills – project management or an MBA – which non-profit organizations might not have access to or be able to afford; and I’m proud that I work for a company which sees the value in letting its employees take work time to contribute to the community. I don’t have to ask my manager for permission to take two hours off in the middle of the day to volunteer – as long as I get my work done, of course.”
The best part is that Kate is not alone; there are Intel employees all over the world who leverage their business skills to give back to their communities. Other examples include collaborations such as a partnership between the St. John’s Shelter Program for Women and Children and a group of MBA’s at our Folsom, California site, to create a business plan, and the Think Positive+ Initiative at our Israel site, which delivers after-school classes to high school students.