(Pictured: Brisbane – Chelsea Parks assists in some outdoor landscaping clean-up on behalf of Act for Kids in Wooloowin [north Brisbane])
VMLY&R ceased normal business operations on Thursday, September 24, to give nearly 7,000 employees around the world the opportunity to support their local community through virtual and in-person charitable volunteer projects.
Locally, VMLY&R partnered with Act for Kids, Clean up Australia, Lively, and Melanoma NZ among many other worth causes in a mix of on site and remote community service.
Says Jon Bird, CEO, VMLY&R Australia/NZ: “I’m proud of the work our team put in this VMLY&R Foundation Day as part of a global effort with 7,000 people across 75 locations. We did it all under the theme of “individual acts of kindness” and in Australia and New Zealand, we undertook a wide range of activities from giving blood, to giving back virtually for not-for-profits, cleaning up Bondi Beach for Clean Up Australia and even knitting up a storm with beanies for Miracle Babies. COVID changed things this year so there was lots of virtual volunteering, but it also allowed us to cover more bases and make more of a difference.”
(Pictured: Brisbane – El Berridge, Ingrid Postle and Yuji Sekiya create a mural painting for the children at Act for Kids in Wooloowin [north Brisbane])
Despite the global pandemic, VMLY&R Worldwide Foundation Day was the most extensive and impactful to date. Thanks to the current remote working environment, employees are more spread out more than usual — so more local communities benefitted from Foundation Day efforts. Additionally, employees were encouraged to involve family members.
Says Jon Cook, CEO, VMLY&R: “2020 has been challenging in so many ways. It’s more important than ever to give back. Through thousands of individual acts of kindness, VMLY&R employees around the world will do whatever they can to make their community stronger. One of our core values is ‘abundantly generous,’ and Foundation Day wonderfully embodies that spirit.”
(Pictured: Sydney – Aisling Fitzpatrick cleans up Bondi Beach in partnership with Clean Up Australia)
This year’s theme for VMLY&R Worldwide Foundation Day was “Together As One,” highlighting the collective impact of all employees rolling up their sleeves to give back in meaningful ways over the same 24-hour period. To visualize the global impact, the agency created a microsite where employees can post photos from the day and celebrate all the charitable efforts.
Says John Mulvihill, executive director, VMLY&R Foundation: “Employees have self-selected a charitable project or utilized the agency’s Foundation Day resource guide to identify a worthy cause to support. With so much separation this year, Foundation Day is a wonderful communal experience while helping countless nonprofit organizations and worthy causes.”
(Pictured: Sydney – Jade Hickey, Alan Patterson, Zac Kraemer, Jon Bird and and August Lantay-Lefkovich virtually volunteer with Vollie, to build a Social Media Strategy for Lively, a not-for-profit organisation and home care provider)
VMLY&R Worldwide Foundation Day is the signature program of the agency’s community outreach program. The VMLY&R Foundation is an employee-funded and employee-led 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that recently surpassed $2.4 million in charitable donations. Employees are invited to financially support the Foundation through payroll deduction contributions. Foundation members receive tangible benefits, including the ability to secure charitable Grants and a $2 to $1 Matching Gifts program.
Additionally, the VMLY&R Foundation supports an array of pro bono services for nonprofits. Each employee also has 16 hours of paid volunteer hours — over and above Foundation Day — to utilize however they see fit to improve their community.
To learn more, please visit vmlyr.com/foundation.
(Pictured: VMLY&R Auckland works with the Melanoma New Zealand team in a concept brainstorming session for future campaigns on melanoma prevention)