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Companies are finding that this sort of support, in addition to public recognition and praise of employees who donate their time and personal resources to various causes, helps them communicate to employees that they are valued as individuals. It also provides a forum through which company can show appreciation to employee for benefits it receives through positive association with employee.
According to Kurt Rechner, President and Chief Operating Officer of Tejas Securities Group, Inc., “Tejas Securities contributes regularly to charities as a way to give back to our community and to show support for our employees and companies with which we do business. For example, we’ve made contributions to Children’s Medical Center Foundation of Austin, Austin Film Society, and Meals on Wheels, each of which provides wonderful benefits to people in and around our home-base of Austin, Texas. In addition, we recently learned about great work being done by Big Brothers of Massachusetts, and we made contributions to that organization as well. I think it’s important for companies to openly communicate with their employees and business partners about their corporate giving activities. By sharing information, employees feel valued, organization learns about good organizations that need its support—and it creates a win: win all way around.”
Companies frequently find themselves contributing around themes. Some, for example, find their employees tend to want to support health-related causes, such as Breast Cancer Research or Alzheimer’s research or other causes that may have affected families and friends. Other organizations find their employees gravitate towards education-related initiatives, such as TJ Ford Foundation and Reading Is Fundamental. And many organizations find themselves contributing to organizations that help support children, especially organizations that provide esteem-building like Big Brothers/Big Sisters and those helping children with special needs, such as Special Olympics and Make a Wish Foundation.
With good causes being a good rallying point for boosting morale, many organizations use their corporate giving programs as team building tools to help unite their workers around a common charitable cause. They find that uniting workers for an outside cause helps reinforce their ability to work together for companies’ good as well.
So if you’re an employee who is active in a charity, consider extending value of your contributions by getting your employer involved. And if you’re an employer who wants to expand benefits of your contributions program, explore ways to involve your employees, too. The non-profits you support will thank you.
A writer. For additional resources on corporate giving and other types of philanthropy visit: http://www.onphilanthropy.com , http://www.aafrc.org , http://www.minnesotagiving.org