Employee volunteering picks up as restrictions easePhil Pyatt
As winter makes way for spring and eventually summer, TimeBank’s employee volunteering programme is starting to pick up as restrictions ease.
Early on in the pandemic we made the decision to suspend face-to-face employee volunteering. However, businesses were still keen to find ways for their employees to volunteer so we built on our experience of online volunteering to offer a programme of activities to help the many beneficiary groups facing social isolation at this difficult time.
Zoom has become our delivery mechanism of choice. One of our most popular corporate volunteering opportunities has been our techy tea parties, where we have partnered with local organisations across London, especially AgeUK groups, to deliver one hour sessions to help older people to keep in touch with family and friends and relieve their social isolation.
A maximum of eight volunteers take part in each session, helping guests with basic tech issues and advice on using their smart phones, tablets and laptops.
One guest at a session run in partnership with software company G2 said:
“Thank you so much, what a fantastic initiative. My husband is in hospital and this session has allowed me to do the things I need to on my laptop so I can communicate with him and help with the things I need to do day to day.”
During this time we have also offered bespoke corporate mentoring projects with young people. These consist of both one-off sessions and a more in-depth series of online meetings, when the employees of our corporate partners share their skills and expertise to mentor young people in their careers.
TimeBank provides full training, matches volunteers to beneficiaries and offers ongoing account management and evaluation.
We are currently working with businesses to deliver a mentoring programme for young people predominantly from the black community who are underrepresented in certain sectors.
Staff from investment specialists Oldfield partners (pictured above) have been mentoring young people who are keen to work in financial services. This is what some of them had to say after their sessions:
“It was an amazing session!”
“I feel like it will be an invaluable opportunity for me.”
As restrictions ease, we are also looking forward to offering outdoor activities once more. TimeBank has a long history of delivering environmental volunteering days including working at community gardens, protecting wildlife, renovating community spaces and revitalising parks and rundown housing estates. Businesses tell us how much their staff benefit from these days, including developing leadership, decision-making and negotiation skills. Unfortunately, these had to be paused because of the pandemic but we are hoping to resume them in the summer.
If you would like to know more about our employee volunteering programme and how it can help your company, do get in touch: [email protected]