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When Kim Mai and I first started Egnyte for Good, we wanted to share our passion for volunteering with all Egnyte employees. We have been pretty consistent with planning a volunteer event once a month, and encouraging the whole office to share opportunities.

Lack of engagement is never really a concern; rather, because everyone has different schedules and interests, we were concerned about finding events that had widespread appeal. We’ve had some success so far!

When Family Giving Tree sent information about the Back-to-School Drive to our Recruiting/Facilities Coordinator Nicole Chaukay-Costa, it seemed like the perfect chance to get the team involved. Our core values of passion and teamwork came together in the backpack drive, and the result was heartwarming.

IMG_20160623_122438This event resonated with me personally because I owe everything to my education. I hoped my well-educated colleagues would be similarly committed, and I’m happy to say they proved that they are always willing to help.

Once we signed up, we received tags that corresponded to grade ranges and had a list of supplies on the back. Participants picked a tag that they wanted and donated all the supplies on the back of the tag, as well as a backpack to hold all the supplies.

The tags started to fly off the table once they were set out. Once Nicole or I received a backpack, we awarded a sticker on the board to the corresponding department. This continued until the due date of Wednesday, July 27.

We also decided to host an informal competition, since Egnyters have proven competitive in the past. We grouped different departments so each group had roughly the same amount of people. As team members earned stickers and kept an eye on other groups, the drive really began to pick up speed!

IMG_20160801_155320The drive went above and beyond our expectations.We have some savvy shoppers here and they were able to put together an amazing contribution; some people donated as many as ten backpacks! Product, G&A and IT knocked it out of the park, but we still ended up having to order more tags because of all the participation. 

I was not really surprised that many team members were very excited about this event and contributed their time and effort. We always manage to hire not just brilliant people, but caring and passionate ones too.

When it came time to deliver the backpacks, one last pleasant surprise awaited: we needed multiple trips despite having two available cars! It was more work to drive back and forth multiple times; not that I didn’t enjoy every second. This was a great start, but I bet we top it next year!

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