Text: Verónica G. Kaufman (@vero_g_kaufman)
Photos: archivo Voluntarios Itinerantes
The first thing you need to do when you finish reading this blog post is to ask your employer if they collaborate with Benevity. Yes, that was direct, but I’ll tell you why and you’ll understand why it’s so important. 😊
This week I had a conversation with Jazmín Ortiz Massa, a volunteer with Voluntarios Itinerantes (VI) and employee at Agilent Technologies (Barcelona), a company that collaborates with Benevity. Together we’ll explain what it is and how you can help shelter animals through this platform.
What is Benevity?
Benevity is a platform that facilitates the donation process between companies and nonprofits around the world. They have an extensive database which allows companies to connect with the associations they want to donate to. To make this happen, the company should select one of the organizations registered on the platform. Voluntarios Itinerantes is one of them. 😊
How does it work?
It’s easy. If the company you work at collaborates with Benevity, one of the options available is to register your volunteer hours on the platform and convert them into a monetary donation that your company will make to the organization of your choosing. One of the options you can choose is to improve the quality of shelter animals with Voluntarios Itinerantes.😉 This is what Jazmín did.
Jazmín, can you tell us about your experience with Benevity?
I’d love to. I’ve been volunteering with VI since 2019. I started out with the association because I missed my dog Charo, who stayed with my family in Argentina when I moved to Spain. I needed to be around animals again. Over time I became a member, a teamer, and I helped manage our social media channels.
In 2022, I learned that the company I work at collaborates with Benevity. Not only was I able to dedicate some of my work hours to volunteering, but I could also convert that volunteer time outside work hours into money which could be donated to a specific cause.
How did you find out that your company collaborates with Benevity?
I work for a company that constantly promotes volunteering among its employees. In fact, Agilent Technologies has a foundation which focuses on this effort and other types of collaborations with social causes. They also hold informative meetings about altruistic practices and share information through different internal communication channels (emails, newsletters, flyers, etc.). In one of these informative meetings, we were told about the possibility to use Benevity to transform our volunteer hours into money which could be donated to a nonprofit. When I heard this, I couldn’t believe it. I’ve spent many hours of my time volunteering and, to learn that I could convert this time and energy into a donation sounded like a fantastic idea.
How much money did Voluntarios Itinerantes receive thanks to your volunteer hours?
When I found out that the platform was Benevity, I contacted Jaime Mateu (president of Voluntarios Itinerantes) to calculate my volunteer hours for the association in 2022. He calculated 140 hours which I registered on the Benevity platform as an employee of Agilent Technologies. These 140 volunteer hours were converted into €3,100 which I could then donate to one of the organizations registered on the Benevity platform and, of course, I chose Voluntarios Itinerantes.
The process was really easy. Since my company Agilent is registered on the platform, I could create a profile as an employee. I simply logged in, registered the volunteer hours and selected Voluntarios Itinerantes as the recipient of the donation. That’s it. In three weeks, VI had received the transfer.
What does it mean to you to work at a company that offers this option?
It means a lot. This information is important to me when considering a job offer. I want to work for a company that’s diverse, inclusive and promotes corporate social responsibility. I research their values and whether they really implement them. The work environment at companies that are dedicated to altruistic endeavours is considerably better than at companies that don’t.
What would you recommend to employees who are reading this blog post?
I would recommend three things. First, find out if their company collaborates with Benevity. Second, find any opportunity you can to share ideas about how to improve the lives of people and animals. Make proposals, be creative, talk to your neighbours, colleagues, share information. And, third, get involved in volunteering. There’s a quote that always stays with me: “Don’t let your privilege cloud your empathy”.