Merriam-Webster defines philanthropy as the practice of giving money and time to help make life better for other people. It's an exercise that's alive and well. According to the National Philanthropic Trust, in 2013, 95.4% of households gave to charity and the average annual household contribution is $2,974. Overall, Americans gave $335.17 billion and corporate giving held steady at $16.76 billion.
There are hundreds of thousands of charities, foundations and non-governmental organizations operating in the United States and almost as many different ways to give back to the communities where we live and work. From a personal perspective, we look to set examples for our children and make our world a better place, one selfless act at time. From a professional perspective, how does this personal effort crossover into the workplace and inspire our coworkers? What does philanthropy mean for corporations like CIT and how is the practice of giving incorporated into the daily flow of work?
At CIT, philanthropy at work ranges from employees donating their time or money, and sometimes both, to institutions working on causes that are near and dear to their hearts. It also represents larger corporate efforts, such as introducing a local non-profit to the broader corporate community to give them more exposure. More exposure equals more awareness and in the case of Miami Children's Hospital's LifeFlight program, resulted in raising $75,000 from 22 aerospace related companies in south Florida for life saving equipment. For CIT, it starts with the individual employees and expands to company-wide initiatives.
There are tremendous benefits to all involved with philanthropic endeavors. The giver becomes involved in the needs of their communities, creating stronger ties and the nonprofits can offer aid to those who need it most. More often than not, one who has received assistance is happy to give back themselves, perpetuating goodwill in the community. Here are two programs CIT has spearheaded to give back to the communities where our employees live and work:
The CIT Global Employee Volunteer Program
CIT offers its employees the opportunity to volunteer for a full work day as part of its Global Employee Volunteer Program (GEVP). This initiative advances our philanthropic focus on employee community involvement.
The CIT Shared Harvest program supports local food organizations around world. The program is 100% supported by employee donations of food, money and other needed items that help local food banks and community organizations fill their shelves with much needed items for people living in their communities.
A topic that will be revisited in this blog, there's always a need for philanthropy - albeit corporate or personal.
here to read how CIT helped acquire a new ambulance for the Miami Children's Hospital LifeFlight® fleet.
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