Volunteer Program Pays Employees to Lend a Hand in Our Communities

“Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before! What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”

–Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

For many of us, the true spirit of Christmas is having the opportunity to make a meaningful difference in someone’s life. For example, for families who have fallen on hard times and are struggling to meet the financial demands of day-to-day life, providing gifts for their children on Christmas day can be beyond their reach.

This holiday season our Advia team helped to make the season a little brighter for families in the regions we serve by collecting toys through a Salvation Army Angel Tree Campaign. During the three-week drive, we sent emails to our members and staff inviting them to stop in any of our 26 branches in Michigan, Wisconsin and Illinois, choose a tag from an Angel Tree, and purchase a toy to donate to our campaign.

Our generous Advia community responded with much enthusiasm and by mid-December we had received nearly 1,000 craft sets, dolls, Legos and other toys that we happily delivered to a total of seven Salvation Army sites in our three states!

Building and Strengthening Relationships

Because supporting our communities is one of our top priorities, we once again partnered with The Salvation Army to provide manpower to staff their Toy Shops for a couple of days leading up to Christmas. Nearly 100 of our staff committed to four-hour shifts, volunteering a total of 400 hours at the Toy Shops where they stocked shelves, helped parents choose age appropriate toys and carried large bulging garbage bags to their vehicles.

In Kalamazoo, Michigan, we worked with Salvation Army Volunteer and Events Coordinator Andrea Meinema, who says they wouldn’t be able to hold the annual event without us. Andrea appreciates that we treat their clients with dignity and respect and that we share the true spirit of Christmas every year, doing whatever is needed and with such positive attitudes.

Ashley Beck, a Digital Channel Administrator with Advia, says the opportunity to serve others and to give of herself and her time was as much of a blessing to her as to those she served. When scheduling her time to volunteer with the organization, she was able to take advantage of our Advia ACTION Volunteer program that provides our staff paid time off from work to volunteer at charities of their choosing. Every year we commit 8,500 paid hours for our staff to support community organizations that are important to them.

Accounting Specialist Karelyn DeBoer Meert loves the Advia ACTION Staff Volunteer program and this year volunteered a total of 21 hours at four different events. She says it’s important to her to work for a company that cares about the community and that volunteering with her coworkers creates unity and builds relationships and memories with each other, a quality that led to Advia being named one of the Best and Brightest Companies to Work for in 2016.

View our video of staff volunteering at The Salvation Army.