Jonathan (Jon) Stump, Vice President of Product Providers at Independence Blue Cross (Independence), is pleased with the good issues his group has completed collectively — not simply within the workplace but additionally in the neighborhood.
Since Jon joined Product Providers seven years in the past, his group (made up of roughly 40 associates) has made giving again a part of the division’s tradition, finishing a number of volunteer occasions collectively by means of Independence’s Blue Crew company volunteer program. The consequence: Since 2017, his group has donated greater than 185 hours to assist three native nonprofits in our area.
How It Began
Jon nonetheless remembers the primary volunteer venture his group labored on.
“The group made 150 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for Saint John’s Hospice, a shelter for homeless males in Heart Metropolis,” he stated. “After that, we simply stored going.”
Through the years, the group has adopted a neighborhood household and offered presents for them in the course of the holidays, collected gadgets and made care packages for Saint John’s Hospice, and ready and served Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners to seniors on the Philadelphia Senior Heart (simply to call a number of).
“My group is raring to proceed discovering methods to offer again,” Jon stated. “After we do issues collectively and see the impression in our group (reminiscent of seniors having fun with an excellent meal), it motivates us to need to do extra.”
Sharing the Pleasure of Volunteering
Jon’s government assistant, Adraine Lewis, has been integral to the group’s volunteering success.
“She makes certain to schedule and coordinate volunteer occasions for our group all year long,” he stated. “Giving again is necessary to her.”
As a member of the Blue Crew, Adraine has been giving again to the group for a few years.
“As soon as upon a time, I used to be on the receiving aspect. My mom stayed on the Reward of Life home in Philadelphia, so I do know the impression that volunteers make on these households,” she stated. “I began volunteering on the Reward of Life years in the past and nonetheless do it right this moment.”
Adraine is captivated with giving again, so when the chance arose for a group volunteering venture, she was excited to assist make it occur.
“It’s an important feeling to assist others. I really like sharing that with others,” she stated. “Plus, it’s a good way to bond along with your coworkers.”
Supporting Their Communities Through the Pandemic
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in 2020, the whole lot modified. With stay-at-home orders in place and the swap to distant work, in-person volunteering was not an possibility. The group needed to pivot to satisfy the rising wants of the group.
“We acknowledged that it was robust for everybody. There was a number of concern and isolation, and essential providers have been stopped,” Jon stated. “We knew we needed to do one thing. There was a lot want.”
The group was dedicated to creating an impression in the neighborhood even when they couldn’t collect collectively to do it. Adraine labored with the Blue Crew to give you a method for the group to soundly assist the group. They selected a digital volunteering venture (they have been one of many first teams of associates at Independence to volunteer just about!) with Caring for Buddies and wrote “Caring Notes” that accompanied meals for seniors — all from the consolation of their very own houses.
“The group wanted assist greater than ever,” stated Jon. “We didn’t understand how necessary this venture was. The founding father of the group defined that the playing cards have been much more worthwhile and impactful than the meals for lonely seniors.”
Altogether, the group participated in 4 digital volunteer initiatives in the course of the top of the pandemic.
Wanting Ahead to the Future
This previous Thanksgiving, the Product Providers group was capable of resume in-person volunteering for the primary time for the reason that begin of the pandemic. They volunteered in individual at Caring for Buddies, the group they supported as a part of their first digital venture. The group was excited to assist the group by packing over 500 emergency meals bins and making ready meals within the kitchen. Caring Notes have been positioned into each the meals bins and meals earlier than being delivered to the recipients.
“It felt so good to return collectively once more and provides again to the group,” stated Adraine.
Now that the group is ready to collect collectively, they’re able to go.
“We’re getting collectively to plan our 2023 volunteer occasions. We hope to do a minimum of 4 this yr as a bunch,” stated Jon. “We’re glad to be again in individual.”