Amy Macintyre [pictured centre] up close and personal with a python. [Inset] Amy in her homemade safari Jeep [left].
Amy Macintyre [pictured centre] up close and personal with a python. [Inset] Amy in her homemade safari Jeep [left].

No good deed goes unrewarded

Did you know all Macquarie staff are encouraged to take up to two days of community volunteers’ leave each year? The offering gives staff the opportunity to ‘give back’ to the community in a way that is meaningful for them, whether it be working with the environment, aged care, animals, children or disadvantaged groups.

Macquarie also benefits from this program; as research shows volunteering boosts morale, productivity, and personal and professional growth.

Amy Macintyre from Group Marketing has already taken advantage of this great initiative, volunteering in January this year. Here she shares her story with This Week:

During the summer school holidays I took my two days’ volunteers leave in addition to annual leave in order to spend a week in Nowra as a kids club leader at the local All Saints Anglican Church. The Safari-themed program was designed to engage local kids, many from disadvantaged communities in the surrounding area, and offered them a week of nutritious breakfasts, followed by games, music, craft, and a highlight activity each day including water sports and a visit from the local petting zoo!

The kids club was part of a larger annual program called ‘Summerfest’ which includes other team-led programs including a crèche, a men’s breakfast series, women’s high tea and parenting events, and a teenage/youth program run especially for the local community.

This was my first time volunteering at Summerfest and I found it very rewarding – I’m grateful I could get involved. It’s easy to return to work after a resort getaway feeling refreshed, but sometimes it takes a week of dressing up as a cheetah and playing ‘stuck in the mud’ with 70 kids in 40 degree heat to benefit from a bit of perspective, a sense of achievement, and renewed enthusiasm!

Learn more about the opportunity and find out how to get involved. Consider how you and your colleagues can ‘give back’ in 2016 – and remember to share your adventure with us here at This Week.