It’s a fact — giving back and helping others benefits everyone involved. Known as the “helper’s high,” volunteering our time, talents and resources to assist others is correlated with a greater sense of well-being, decreased stress and depression, as well as increased happiness.
Companies are recognizing the need for integrating this crucial aspect into corporate wellness programs that have traditionally focused on physical perks like gym memberships. In combination with the physical aspects of health, a focus on those in need throughout the community and the world is an important part of any wellness program.
Depending on the size of your organization, there are numerous ways you can effectively provide service and volunteering opportunities for your employees. Consider some of the following ideas to create a successful volunteer effort:
Offer charitable donation match programs
Chances are many of your employees have causes that they feel passionate about or have a personal connection to. Show your commitment to these causes by offering a yearly charitable donation match for each employee. In addition to other opportunities you provide, this will allow employees to feel financially supported in whatever cause they choose. As a part of this, you’ll gain visibility into the interests and concerns of your employees; knowing this information can be beneficial as you choose volunteer opportunities in the future.
Choose different causes to focus on throughout the year
With so many non-profit organizations and needs throughout our communities and in the world, the idea of “giving back” can be overwhelming for many. So often there’s a feeling of, “where do I even start?” As an employer you can be a catalyst for education and awareness of several organizations locally, regionally, nationally and globally. Create a schedule, whether it be monthly or quarterly for example, where your company spotlights a need or cause. Throughout that month or quarter, organize educational opportunities onsite from non-profit representatives, chance to volunteer offsite and donation drives that benefit that organization. At the end of the year, your employees will be more intimately aware of more causes than they were previously.
Dedicate specific workdays to volunteering
As wonderful as volunteer work is, it can be difficult for some to find the time to engage in something more than what they are already committed to. Find time – company-wide — that can be dedicated to volunteer work where employees are encouraged to leave their work behind to engage in something greater for a set period of time. Providing the opportunity to do this within work hours will ensure greater initial participation and will create a greater desire for time to be volunteered in the future.
Leverage fitness benefits to help achieve “giving back”
Combine multiple elements of your wellness program by encouraging employees to use physical goals to raise money or other resources for different causes. Leverage whatever fitness benefits you provide to not only get employees moving, but to use their physical goals to create awareness for their cause of choice – or in conjunction with a corporate effort.
Involve a healthy amount of competition
Everyone loves a friendly competition! Have departments, teams and/or divisions compete against each other in order to achieve different goals based on the need or cause. From clothing and food drives, to financial contributions and time volunteered, there are several ways to get employees involved on more than just an individual level. As a team they’ll not only achieve goals together but make a greater difference by participating.
Offering a wide array of benefits, from flexible schedules to fitness and volunteering, helps engage employees and fight off burnout. ClassPass Corporate offers a variety of fitness and wellness experiences that employees actually want to use — contact us today to learn more.