Using Employee Charity Days to volunteer with Hackney IT Drop-in

Thu, 23 Aug, 2018

By Sarah Courtman

One of the employee benefits at Kindred Group is the possibility of volunteering for charitable purposes. This is a global benefit that is available across all our offices, and each employee has an ‘allowance’ of up to three days per year. We are incredibly lucky to have this opportunity, yet only 2% took advantage of this last year. We are committed to increasing this percentage by launching Benefacto, a charity volunteering booking service in the UK. 

Part of Kindred’s long-term commitment towards sustainability involves contributing to our communities. We offer paid leave for all our employees, providing up to three days per year which can be used towards various volunteering projects. In the UK, we are now working with Benefacto to make it easier for people to find, book and use their employee charity days. As a charity affiliate, they work with local charities and businesses, with a mission to "engage more professional people in meaningful volunteering". By introducing Benefacto, we are convinced more people will take advantage of their charity days allowance. Having worked at a charity before, I feel particularly passionate about this. Being part of the Engagement Group in our London office, it’s become my personal mission to ensure as many people as possible use their employee charity days allowance.

The first volunteering experience we had following the launch of Benefacto was the Hackney IT Drop-in; a digital skills training session for elderly. We were a group of four people, all from different departments, who spent the day teaching individuals aged 50+ how to set up an e-mail account, how to apply for jobs online, and how to send a text message. Sounds easy, right? I’ll tell you, it was surprisingly challenging! It’s much more mentally taxing than anticipated. I think we all tend to forget that we have grown up around tech gadgets, relying on them as daily essentials in our everyday life. We take it for granted, and almost forget that there are people who lacks basic digital skills. In the end, we had a great experience. It felt really good to help others, so we highly recommend it.

If you want to learn about our other sustainability efforts, you can read more about them here.