Cleaning public spaces, taking care of the greenery, doing some small repairs and helping those in need: These are just a few of the activities to choose from during the biggest corporate volunteering event in central Europe, Naše Mesto (Our City), organised by the Pontis Foundation on June 7 and 8.
Interest on the rise
10,158 people dressed in the same T-shirts will help with over 500 activities in 46 towns and villages across Slovakia. The novelty of the 13th year of Naše Mesto is “plogging”, i.e. jogging linked with picking up litter.
More and more people are trying to behave responsibly. When the first year of the event took place in 2007, only 20 firms participated. Since then, the number has increased eight fold.
“We are pleased about the number of ways there are to help,” said Michal Kišša, programme director of the Pontis Foundation. “Employers have not forgetten about our regions, and they are allowing their employees to put their shoulders to the wheel at places where children play or where dogs are walked.”
Managers will help, too
Not only employees participate in this volunteer event. Traditionally, managers and other leading representatives of the companies also put on the T-shirt and help those in need.
This year, more than 15 managers from companies like Adient Slovakia, Amazon /Slovakia/, Čechová & Partner, CURADEN Slovakia, GSK, ING Bank, Lenovo Slovakia, Pfizer Luxembourg SARL, Profesia, TNT Express Worldwide and others will work at the Imobilio community centre to assist in the integration, education and rehabilitation of disabled people.
It appears that people are caring more about the places they live in because the activities in the towns that welcome volunteers have increased almost 30 fold since 2007.
“Naše Mesto is not only an opportunity for companies to help their regions and organise extraordinary teambuilding experiences for their employees,” said Kišša. “The event is also a bridge that connects volunteers with the places where they help, and many times this grows into a long-term relationship.”