Did you know that volunteering your time and expertise can make you happier and healthier? It’s been shown that unpaid work for the good of others enables people to make new friends, learn new skills and experience reduced stress levels.
And it’s not just individuals who benefit. Companies that create a culture of volunteering have better employee morale, workplace atmosphere and brand perception. A Deloitte study found that a large majority (89 percent) of employees think that companies that sponsor volunteer activities offer a better work environment. Volunteer activities were also reported to be more effective at boosting staff morale than company-sponsored happy hours, and more than three-quarters of workers said that volunteering is essential to employee well-being.
The insurance industry is no slouch when it comes to volunteering. The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) has contributed more than 300,000 volunteer hours to hundreds of community nonprofit organizations since its inception in 1994. The industry gives back to communities in significant and varied ways including pro bono and skills-sharing support to nonprofit organizations, disaster response, relief and recovery, employee-driven outreach in local communities and many other creative corporate social responsibility initiatives.
The industry is also hoping to recruit and retain workers by emphasizing the culture of volunteering. On April 10, the IICF released a white paper documenting the findings of its Millennial Ideas Summit. The summit convened in late 2018 with more than 50 young leaders and emerging talent from across the insurance industry to discuss key topics and challenges facing the industry. These included talent and recruitment of millennials; technology, innovation and change; and social responsibility, particularly the industry’s philanthropic response following natural disasters.
The paper, What Millennials Want, how are we engaging the millennial workforce, concluded that communicating to the younger workforce that insurance is a business of service and one that helps people in their times of need is critically important to millennials, who want opportunities to give back and make a difference through experiences and grassroots ways that help their communities.
April is National Volunteer Month. What is your company doing to promote volunteerism? Let us know in the comments section.
I.I.I.’s new California representative Janet Ruiz brings us this timely report from the insurance industry’s first philanthropic roundtable of the new year:
The first of three 2015 insurance industry philanthropic roundtables was held earlier this week in Woodland Hills, CA at Farmers Insurance to discuss the landscape of philanthropy with the theme of disaster resilience.
Speakers at the meeting presented case studies of successes such as the partnership of Farmers Insurance with the Saint Bernard Project to rebuild Joplin, Missouri. The Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) discussed the role of catastrophe communications in getting important information out to media and consumers before, during, and after a catastrophe. Team Rubicon talked about their mission to bridge the gap for veterans and how they engage veterans, first responders and volunteers in rebuilding communities after a disaster.
The Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) leads the philanthropic roundtables attended by member insurance companies involved in philanthropy and community giving. It was born out of the passion of insurance professionals to make a positive community impact.
The IICF Early Literacy Initiative and Sesame Workshop Partnership recently launched — ‘Every Day is a Reading and Writing Day’ — working to provide every American child the opportunity to read and write. As Melissa Duncan, IICF Western Division says: “Early education makes true social progress.”
Bill Ross, CEO, IICF wrapped up the roundtable by reminding all of the impact the insurance industry has giving $1 billion annually in direct giving and sponsorships to charity.
It was a powerful session!
You can read more on the insurance industry’s contribution to community and charitable causes here.