How To Volunteer In Finance #VolunteersWeek
Celebrating Volunteers’ Week is the perfect way for enterprises big and small to further their commitments to their community, their people and those in need. Volunteering is a central component of modern businesses’ community support and commitments to ESG (environmental, social and governance) strategy. But it also gives a positive boost to employee wellbeing and is an incredibly effective vehicle of employee bonding and brand connection that far exceeds almost any other team-based event within a workforce.
What is Volunteers’ Week?
And, as the stats below indicate, volunteering is on the rise, which further indicates a growing appetite for helping others!
“Volunteers’ Week is an annual celebration of the contribution millions of people make across the UK through volunteering”.
The year, Volunteers’ Week is focusing on community presence and support, with their campaign called #MonthOfCommunity.
“The 38th annual Volunteers’ Week is taking place during the #MonthOfCommunity. Running throughout June, #MonthOfCommunity brings together organisations with a range of events in order to encourage us all to think about and join in with activities happening in our local communities”.
As we discuss in a little more detail below, volunteering is impactful precisely because most of the efforts of volunteers take place in their communities, helping people and charities in real-time.
This is one of the main reasons businesses of all sizes make a concerted effort to commit their employee’ time to volunteer in their community – not only is the effort visible, but it also shows that an enterprise’s corporate social responsibility stretches beyond the front door, and recognises that a business is only really as successful as the people and communities it holds up.
It’s also incredibly good for company morale – “Employees whose employers implement volunteering programmes are more engaged and report higher levels of both autonomy and support from their co-workers and supervisors”. Volunteering works like a sort of ESG glue, giving employees a further sense of purpose in their job and connection to their community.
UK volunteering statistics
The collective benefits from volunteers’ efforts each year cannot be overstated, and these are shared both by the company, organisation or community receiving volunteer help and the volunteers themselves.
And, critically, volunteering is having a bit of a boom moment in the UK.
- According to Statista, the proportion of people in the UK volunteering has risen from 23.8% in 2005/2006 to 32.4% in 2020.
- In the UK Government’s Community Life Survey, 62% of respondents (approximately 28 million people in England) have volunteered in some way in the last 12 months, and 41% (approximately 19 million people in England) at least once a month.
- 65-74-year-olds are the most frequent volunteers.
The sheer overwhelming numbers of people giving up time, labour and, in the majority of cases, a quiet retirement, speaks to the depth of charity and community felt by many millions in the UK.
Examples of positive cultures of volunteering within finance
As one of the world’s most dynamic and integral employment sectors, the finance industry has long been a visible and vocal advocate for charitable giving, and volunteering plays a huge part in establishing a culture of work and community presence beyond profit or provision of financial products or services.
Many of the world’s leading financial institutions offer well-established volunteering packages to their employees, including:
- Provident Financial
- NatWest Group
- Credit Suisse
- Lloyds Banking Group
- Access Bank Group
- Deutsche Bank
- Accor Invest
NB: It’s wise for brands to remember to volunteer for the right reasons. Volunteering should never be a marketing gimmick or something that’s done for a vague community presence or engagement.
Volunteering is a societal good, and often volunteers are stepping into community environments that are chronically underfunded or underrepresented. This means volunteering can often be the difference between a charity or community organisation existing at all.
So brands need to be aware – volunteering, either as a whole business or as a representative of a business, needs to be wholly committed to and meaningful, and should never be seen as a vanity brand tool.
Our volunteer commitment
Renaix are proud to work with national social mobility charity Career Ready, and our staff volunteer with their organisation on a range of projects, mentoring relationships and network support.
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