Viasat saw its highest employee participation rate ever during this year's National Volunteer Week. With over 1,000 hours volunteered and 391 participating employees, Viasat impacted its communities both domestically and abroad. Looking to make a difference, Viasat employees jumped in to help at 11 U.S. locations and two locations overseas. Supporting causes such as hunger, homelessness, education/literacy, environmental sustainability, active military duty, health and more, employees were able to give back to their communities and volunteer with the organizations they're passionate about.
“Viasat Volunteer Week engages employees globally in a week of volunteer activities that have a lasting effect on local communities where we live and work,” said Tory See, who leads Viasat impact programs globally from the Carlsbad, California headquarters. “While employees are involved all year in causes they care about, having a week of volunteering together gives everyone involved a sense of connectedness, both to each other and to the community.”
For this year's Volunteer Week, held April 15 - 21st, Viasat’s most active locations for volunteering were Tempe, AZ, Chennai, India and Carlsbad, CA.
In Tempe, 40 employees put in 58 volunteer hours across four events – three of which were STEM related. For Feed My Starving Children, the group packed 26 cases of food, 214 boxes, and 46,244 meals – all while winning the award for cleanest work station. They also sorted medical supplies for project C.U.R.E., volunteered at MESA Engineering day for middle school and high school students, and participated in Arizona’s annual Hope Run to support local STEM clubs for children.
In Chennai, 80 employees contributed 165 volunteer hours across four events. The group worked to donate computers to a local government-run school, held a beach cleanup, and participated in a collection drive to donate stationery items, groceries, and other essentials to a nearby shelter home. They also visited Annai Fathima Child Welfare Centre to donate 110 academic packs for impoverished children as they approach the new school year.
“Viasat Volunteer Week is a wonderful way to give back to the society we live in through various ways," said Chennai employee Gayathri Sitaraman. "It also gives a sense of satisfaction to the employees who volunteer, and it improves self-confidence.”
In Carlsbad, 165 employees put in 239 volunteer hours across nine events.
“Volunteer week was great -- great charities to choose from, and the volunteer time was well spent helping the community,” said Carlsbad employee Nancy Hamilton.
The group made 60 meals and dropped them off at the Haven House for the homeless, raised $238 for Nip Cancer in the Bud, and raised $5,090 for the MS Society by participating in an MS Walk. A team of volunteers and executives hosted a Celebrity Cook Off with approximately 500 attendees and raised over $3,000 for environmental sustainability, and they participated in two beach cleanups for I Love a Clean San Diego. They also assembled bags and wrote cards for the homeless, and they built a playhouse with Habitat for Humanity for a military family.
Employee-led with a company match
One of Viasat’s core focuses in the community is employee-led volunteer efforts, so the company’s great impact in the community this National Volunteer Week is no surprise. Outside of National Volunteer Week, employees are encouraged through the Giving program to participate in employee driven community outreach, and Viasat provides its employees with a variety of ways to give back.
Through the Giving program, for example, an employee can give up to $2,000 per year to qualifying organizations, and Viasat will match the donation, dollar for dollar. Additionally, employees can receive $10 for every hour they volunteer outside of the office to donate to a charity of their choice. Employees are encouraged to share their volunteering stories with the rest of the Viasat community to inspire and invite others to give back.
Viasat is very proud of the positive global impact its employees had during Viasat Volunteer Week. The company and its employees are already planning and looking forward to reaching even greater success in 2019, but in the meantime, they’ll keep on giving.
“It is amazing to see the impact we have when we work as a one team,” See said. “Together we have the capacity to change the world.”
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