This article is sponsored by Fill it Forward.
Is there a word that you would use to describe your work in 2020?
Mine is "unfulfilled." Although for me, feeling unfulfilled simply means there is work to be done. Lately, I’ve been thinking about all of the good work we had planned to do this year.
Our team at Fill it Forward had big plans to move our environmental and social initiatives forward in 2020. The focus was to use our new app experience and reusable products to divert thousands of pounds of waste from landfills and oceans while helping to fund hundreds of clean water projects around the world. Despite our best efforts, we haven’t delivered (yet).
As a way to raise additional donations, the Always Giving Collection was created as a direct response to the current water crisis made worse by the pandemic. Every purchase unlocks a $5 donation to projects in the United States, Canada, India, Ethiopia or the Dominican Republic. The app experience allows corporate teams to track their environmental impact and support meaningful giving projects every time they reuse their water bottles.
I know we’re not alone in our efforts to make a difference, as many in the sustainability community are also navigating the impact of COVID-19. At the corporate level, sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) teams are resilient and have had to fight through more persistent issues than this before, but being affected by multiple challenges simultaneously has meant our collective environmental and philanthropic targets are suddenly being put on the back-burner.
While these setbacks have made a significant impact on our strategic goals, I believe teams and stakeholders will remember how their employers worked to take action and demonstrate generosity in a time of uncertainty. The work we are all doing now will have a long-term effect — people want to work for socially responsible companies and customers desire supporting companies that give back to their communities.
With the unexpected shift to working from home and with large-scale in-person events shutting down, team leaders have faced new pressures to strengthen bonds and unify their remote employees.
This year, I’ve been inspired by so many companies thinking outside the box to ensure they are continuing to help, such as Morgan Stanley and Bloomberg, which both launched a virtual Fill it Forward program to engage their remote global employees, and Tarkett, which supported a custom water project in the U.S. as a unique way to engage with clients around a shared philanthropic goal.
Whether your corporate team is rallying around the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or you’re an individual buying from a Certified B Corporation using business as for good, the global pandemic has provided all of us a unique opportunity to rethink how we give back and direct help where it’s needed most.
Our team remains focused on the reduction of single-use plastics and addressing global water issues. This year we’re encouraging companies to use their corporate gifting for good as we approach the holiday season, by purchasing the Always Giving Collection as a way to raise funds for essential charitable organizations, while simultaneously helping achieve your philanthropic and waste reduction targets.
The past few months have taken a considerable toll on many charities, whose teams are still working around the clock to respond to COVID-19 and are using their expertise to continue their critical work supporting the most vulnerable. The pandemic has emphasized how important it is to have access to clean water and sanitation, but billions of people still go without this basic need. According to the United Nations, urgent solutions are needed for the 40 percent of our global population affected by water scarcity.
The problem may be closer to home than you may think. Our non-profit partner DIGDEEP, a human rights organization dedicated to ensuring every American has clean running water, is featured within the collection in an effort to help close the water gap once and for all.
"With more than 2 million Americans living without running water or a toilet, there is tremendous work to be done around water right here at home," said George McGraw, executive director at DIGDEEP. "COVID has only made that clearer; after all, how can you stay home and stay safe if you don’t even have enough clean water to wash your hands? Corporations have been a part of this work since day one, investing in our water access projects and rallying their most valuable asset — their team — in support of this work, as volunteers, social media organizers and engaged citizens."
Help support clean water projects with the new Fill it Forward app and Always Giving Collection. Source: DIGDEEP.
Oct. 15 is Global Handwashing Day, and we’ve set a $100,000 goal to support our incredible charitable partners.
The Always Giving Collection is a way for our sustainability community, and anyone else who feels a little unfulfilled this year, to make an immediate impact. Here’s to a "fulfilling" finish to 2020 and beyond.
More than 300 organizations across North America are always giving with Fill it Forward. Request a free sample of the corporate gift experience here.
Deliver an impactful gift that helps our planet and the people on it. Bright and beautifully packaged, the Always Giving Collection can be customized to engage teams and clients who want to make a sustainable impact. Source: Fill it Forward.