Volunteering Hours Well Spent

October 2022

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What do climbing mountains, cleaning beaches, and being backstage at the Commonwealth games have in common? They’re all ways our wonderful employees have chosen to spend their paid 40 hours volunteering time!  

Across the summer months, MSD colleagues have travelled far and wide, utilising their hours to make a real impact outside of their daily role. The policy, which grants every colleague 40 hours of paid volunteering, gives colleagues a chance to get involved with projects personal to them, in recognition of the endless list of benefits volunteering can bring.  

One of the most appreciable of these benefits is a feeling of togetherness. Alison, who alongside members of our UK Asia Pacific Association EBRG, spent a day at a community centre and cornerstone of the BAMER (Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic and Refugee) community in Camden. Reflecting on her experience she said “I am so proud to have spent a beautiful day volunteering with wonderful staff and communities.”

Read more on this and other volunteering activities below!  

UK Asia Pacific Association – Kings Cross Brunswick Association

The UK Asia Pacific Association Core Team spent a day with the Kings Cross Brunswick Association, serving both a Bangladeshi Community Centre luncheon and a Chinese community picnic.

“The day was all about food preparation, sharing and learning stories on our cultures, eating delicious food together with much laughter and smiling faces from everyone we met. Volunteering is all about teamwork and everyone played their part.”

Lisa – Mountain Rescue

“This year I used my 40 hours to volunteer for Scottish Mountain Rescue. As a member of this charity, it is useful to have this extra time as most volunteering I do is taken up with training and rescues mainly at weekends so there is often less time for other important tasks .

I used this time from MSD to up-skill some newer members who have been unable to attend other training events.  I have also been updating our equipment records into a more usable format and general tidy up of safety records. Next year, I’m hoping to do the emergency medical technicians’ training which is a 5-day course as it would be very useful to have someone with this qualification in the rescue team – having the 40hrs from MSD could make this possible.”

Andrew – Surfers Against Sewage

“Using my MSD volunteering hours, I have volunteered for Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) working with the teachers and children at a local primary school in Whitley Bay, (North East England) to help them to achieve SAS ‘Plastic Free School status’.

This involved us going to the local beaches and doing beach cleans and classroom sessions on what reductions in single use plastics they could make in their own school. We also supported them to write to local businesses they frequent which use single use plastics and to their local MP to demand change to the system. They are the first local school to achieve Plastic Free Status!”  

Joanne – Commonwealth Games

“As part of the MSD volunteering programme, I put myself forward for the Commonwealth Games 2022. The games were being held in England, in my home city of Birmingham, and my reply to anyone who asked why would you commit yourself was ‘why not?!’

The Commonwealth Games is a wonderful platform for inclusion and diversity by showing people what is possible and encouraging the next generation. The fact that it was being held in my home city was a once in a lifetime opportunity. In my role as a Team Leader for the uniform section, I was responsible for ensuring that all of the many volunteers, technical staff and officials had uniform that fitted them! I am incredibly proud of being part of the Commonwealth Collective and proud of being Brum!” 

Corporate Policy Team – New Horizon Youth Centre

Members of Corporate Policy teamed up to volunteer at our Neighbour of Choice charity, New Horizon, where they landscaped the exterior of their day centre where immediate help is given to young people facing homelessness.

“…We transformed the old empty flower beds into a horticultural masterpiece! Who knew that the Corporate Policy and Communications team had so much gardening talent? The young people will continue with the garden project, and we hope that it creates a welcoming environment at the day centre.”

Nat & Sara – Richard T. Clark Fellowship for Global Health

Nat and Sara volunteered their time to take part in our annual RTC Fellowship programme – a corporate volunteering programme designed to leverage the skills and talents of our employees worldwide.

Working with NGO’s in Costa Rica, the pair have been able to offer vital support harnessing the skills and knowledge they’ve learned in their daily roles to an exciting new environment.

GB-NON-06472 | Date of Preparation: September 2022