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| Written by Veronica Ferguson

The Power of Giving Back

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) and global giveback initiatives are fun, engaging ways to support impactful causes while building your company or event’s reputation. Over the years, they have transformed from a single act of charity to complete, brand-centric philanthropy that is built into your strategy and methods of operations. This blog post shares ideas for including CSR in events and provides a real-world example of how M&IW’s year-round, company-wide Global Giveback initiative was both introduced and incorporated into our signature event.

Giving Back at Events

CSR givebacks have become a popular addition to many meetings, events, and incentive programs. While fundraising for a charity or non-profit organization is an easy and impactful way to make a difference, it’s not as engaging for attendees. Interactive giveback activities, either as part of the agenda or as an optional pre- or post-event offering, are an effective way to get attendees personally invested and instill a sense of purpose and satisfaction. Examples include creating care packages, packing backpacks with school supplies, building beehives, or cleaning the local ecosystem. The opportunities are endless!

No matter how you choose to give back during your event, create a sense of friendly competition and incentivize participation by recognizing top achievers and high-performing teams. If a fundraiser is part of your CSR efforts, open donations before the event starts to boost both awareness and impact. Consider setting up a donation match or donating a portion of registration fees so attendees know you’re just as invested as they are.

For help planning and executing a CSR activity at your next event, contact us today.

Creating a Culture of Giving Back

For maximum impact, giving back as an organization shouldn’t be limited to your meetings and events. Instead, incorporate CSR into your organizational culture. At M&IW, we launched our Global Giveback program in 2014 to foster a culture of giving while engaging our remote workforce around the world. Employees are encouraged to make a difference in their local communities with up to eight paid volunteer hours per year.

In addition, a company-wide program is introduced each year as both a teambuilding and giveback initiative. Over the years, we have supported causes such as Relay for Life, Make-A-Wish, Rise Against Hunger, and the Verkanos Art Center in Rwanda.

For our 2023 Global Giveback program, it was our honor to support Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) in providing comfort, care, and support for families with children who are sick around the world. This impactful organization was chosen because RMHC chapters are located globally. By dividing our employees into geographic teams, each team was able to focus their efforts on their local chapter, making the program more personal and therefore more impactful. Throughout the first half of 2023, M&IW employees held fundraisers; volunteered at their chapters; collected pop tabs; and donated supplies, toys, gift cards, and more.

Everything came together at the 2023 M&IW Summit in August. Employees tallied their total donations and volunteer hours, and our customers and supplier partners were invited to donate pop tabs, toys, and gift cards onsite. For the CSR activity on our employee-only day of our signature event, our team members rotated through stations making felt blankets and creating care packages, all of which were donated to the RMHC chapter closest to our headquarters. Our team loved being able to give back in a hands-on way one final time—and the first time all together as a full company instead of in their location-based teams.

We are thrilled to share that in total, we raised $15,712 in monetary donations, volunteered for 744 hours at chapters around the world, and donated $15,849 worth of supplies. We are excited to continue our partnership with RMHC in 2024 and look forward to furthering our support around the world.

Join us in giving back to RMHC! Make a donation now or find your local chapter to learn how you can volunteer and what supplies are needed. Another easy way to give back is to Round-Up for RMHC every time you eat at McDonald’s; when you round up your total to the nearest dollar, the difference is donated to RMHC.