National Volunteer Week is April 7-13, 2019, and is celebrated by countries all over the world as an opportunity to thank volunteers worldwide and encourage additional activism from communities and organizations.

At Laserfiche, we’re proud to sponsor regular community outreach efforts and participate in local volunteering opportunities with our team through the Laserfiche Cares program.

To get in the spirit for National Volunteer Week, we interviewed several members of the Laserfiche team to learn more about why they choose to volunteer:

Why do you choose to volunteer? 

“From a very young age, my dad stressed the importance of being a contributing member of society and preached that we should take it upon ourselves to make the world a better place. When my sister and I were young, we wouldn’t necessarily be thrilled about volunteer opportunities he signed us up for. When we questioned why we had to do it, our dad would respond, ‘because you don’t have money to give and your time is just as valuable.’

Laserfiche was a proud sponsor of the Clippers SciFest Socal, where our team shared their tech knowledge with kids and their families to develop critical thinking & problem solving skills through fun activities, demos, and friendly competitions.

As I got older, I started to understand how important it was to give back and volunteering quickly became a part of my identity. It’s important to me to work for a company that understands the importance of giving, and I value the volunteer opportunities that Laserfiche provides to its employees. I get a great sense of fulfillment knowing that I work for a company that recognizes and embraces the power it has to make the world a better place.” – Kylee Keskerian, Public Relations Specialist

What is your favorite way to volunteer/give back to the community?

“My favorite way to give back to the community is volunteering at the Long Beach Rescue Mission. The reason I enjoy this one so much is because it is eye opening in so many different ways.

The Long Beach Rescue Mission provides food, clothing, shelter and guidance to men, women and children in the local community. The Laserfiche team regularly volunteers during evening meal services.

There are people from many walks of life that end up homeless or in need of a hot meal and to be able to help them even just a little is a wonderful experience. Another reason is because many of the people who get served at the Rescue Mission are extremely nice and very polite which just makes helping them in their time of need that much more rewarding. Another reason I enjoy volunteering there is because I had never worked a service job growing up, and it allows me to get a small glimpse and respect for the people who do, it is not easy and the people who do work in the industry should be respected.” – Grant Walker, Software Engineer

If you could choose any volunteer opportunity to participate in, what would it be?

“I’d really love to volunteer with the elderly with the help of my pup, Nala. When I was younger, I used to volunteer with my poodle and take her to nursing homes to visit with the residents. It was always so rewarding to see how excited the community was when it was visiting day; I would do different tricks with her and sit and talk to different residents about their experiences and stories.

Pups like Kasama (above) can bring a smile to those in need of companionship, such as nursing homes and hospital wings. Bonus points to Kasama for her Laserfiche team spirit!

So many elderly in nursing homes don’t have a strong support system and feel so thankful for being able to pet a furry friend and have companionship for an hour or two. Volunteering with your animal is a great way to benefit both the community and your pup, who loves to have a job to look forward to as well .” – Katie Gaston, Director, Cloud Program Management

If you could name one volunteering “role model” you admire, who would it be?

“My mom is my volunteering role model.  She both taught and showed me the importance of volunteering. She worked full time, but would always help out with my school in whatever ways she could—most of the time, that meant after hours with the PTA or helping our ‘room mom’ with projects that she could work on at home after work.  This taught me that no matter what is going on in your life, there is a way to help others for the greater good.

Laserfiche employees participate in semi-annual donation drives to provide necessities and gifts to organizations such as the YMCA of Greater Long Beach, whose young students enjoyed their school supplies for the 2018-2019 school year!

Then, my mom started volunteering with the rescue mission every week serving chili to the homeless. I would go every so often when I was able to after school and sports. Volunteering was an ever-present part of my childhood. Because of that, volunteering is a natural part of my life. I feel an innate expectation and drive to help others and I feel humbled and grateful when I do. My mom taught me that, even though I didn’t have everything, I was fortunate and had luxuries that other people didn’t, so it was important to give back and leave the world better than I found it.” –Noel Payne, Software Marketing Specialist

What is your favorite volunteering experience you’ve ever had?

My favorite volunteering experience is helping build homes for Habitat for Humanity. I enjoyed being able to donate my time and construction experience to help a program build homes for those in need.

The Laserfiche team partners with Habitat for Humanity LA to regularly participate in local home-building events, where we get our hands dirty helping to construct homes for local families in need.

I can’t wait for another opportunity to donate more time on the next Habitat project!” – Patrick Snook, Project Manager

Why is it important for organizations to volunteer/give back to their community?

“Companies are vital to communities for jobs and revenue creation. To be a good community citizen, to ‘do good,’ and then some, companies need to holistically look at how they affect various stakeholders in their universe.

Laserfiche hosts company-wide activities to spread awareness, education, and support for causes important to our community, such as Breast Cancer Awareness Month each October.

By initiating Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities, companies can inherently support the communities they touch, rally employee morale, and improve their overall reputation.

A CSR-focused company can obtain a slew of benefits from such ‘do good’ intentions. In a sense, CSR can change the face of a company from being perceived as an unfeeling legal entity to an experience of a company having a personality and caring about the universe it operates in, which will only improve its brand.” –Wylie Strout, General Counsel

How can you encourage others in your organization to get involved in volunteering?

1. Inspire by doing. Anyone who is already passionate about volunteering can inspire others just by doing what they love to do. Of course, this also means you need to make your activities visible—either through taking photos and sharing them on any relevant social media or just by talking about what you do whenever you get the opportunity. Sometimes this is the most important part just to create awareness!

Laserfiche partners with local programs such as the “I Dig Long Beach” initiative developed by the City of Long Beach, which enlisted local volunteers to plant trees in urban neighborhoods for improved shade and air quality.

2. Just ask. Most of the time, people already have an innate desire to help out, and they just need someone to help draw that out. If you ask the people that you know to get involved, you’re adding a personal element to it. Also, reach out to those who might not be involved yet and see what kinds of causes they care about. If you involve them in the conversation, they’re much more likely to get engaged and participate in volunteer events

3. Make it cool! Those who are already volunteers know what the value is, but sometimes to catch other people’s interest it really helps to do something that makes the volunteer group at your organization stand out and highlights the value you get from participating.

Laserfiche employees enjoy participating in programs such as the Long Beach MemorialCare “Spark Awareness for Childhood Cancer” project, which encouraged individuals and organizations to create notes of support and encouragement for young patients and their families.

Incentivize your volunteer program with small rewards or tokens of appreciation—you can get more volunteers motivated in this way simply because you’re doing something to recognize their efforts.” –Danielle Gilstrap, Content Manager, Corporate Events

On behalf of the Laserfiche team, we’d like to encourage all of our readers to make an effort to celebrate National Volunteer Week by donating your time, efforts or means to support the needs of your local community. For additional inspiration and ideas to get started, visit our Laserfiche Cares homepage.

Interested in becoming a part of our team? Learn about opportunities at Laserfiche.

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