RDC staff and faculty come together to support United Way Central Alberta
Tuesday, December 15, 2020
During three weeks in late November and early December, Red Deer College employees participated in an internal workplace fundraising initiative for United Way Central Alberta. RDC employees raised more than $11,000 and hundreds of items to support local community organizations and people living in this region.
Central Albertans continue to face economic challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic and other reasons, meaning that more of our neighbours could experience hardship in what is often an already difficult time of year. Local community organizations have also expressed that they are having more difficulty raising the support that they rely on.
Creative strategies were required for RDC’s United Way campaign to reflect remote working arrangements of many staff and adherence to public health measures due to the pandemic. At the same time, the pandemic reinforced the importance of doing a campaign for the College’s employees, and the impact that RDC’s internal community could have at this time.
RDC’s workplace campaign was designed and delivered by staff and faculty and included a wide range of activities that served to raise financial support for United Way Central Alberta as well as unique ways of engaging coworkers with each other.
“We’ve missed the comradery of doing a coffee run with our coworkers, and we all needed a break from the stress and seriousness of all that our community is faced with. The United Way activities gave us the opportunity to connect with one another, while supporting community services in a time of real need,” says RDC campaign co-chair Jasmine Nelson.
During the campaign, colleagues designated as United Way Champions connected within their departments to decide on area initiatives. Some departments met virtually each morning for a themed virtual coffee break. Others shared baby, workspace and pet photos to contribute to a “Guess Who” quiz.
College-wide fundraising initiatives included a 50-50, Basic Needs Drive, video-conferenced eating contest and walking challenge. Additionally, volunteer RDC faculty and staff members delivered Lunch and Learns, sharing personal and professional passions with coworkers.
RDC’s United Way campaign coincided with related campaigns at the College and in the community. Annually, staff in RDC’s Ancillary & Sport Services department spearhead a food and toy drive to support the Students’ Association Student Food Bank and Tubs & Toys for the Red Deer Christmas Bureau. Two RDC alumni businesses also ran coinciding campaigns to support United Way: Stems Floral and Famoso Italian Pizzeria. Red Deer College staff and faculty incorporated these activities in the campaign initiative, providing multiple ways for colleagues to engage with each other and support United Way Central Alberta.
“As I reflect on the past year, I have been truly proud to lead this organization. With each challenge our community faces, my RDC colleagues have dedicated their support to our students and each other, as well as to our valued community members across central Alberta. Seeing our employees’ enthusiastic support for United Way during these tough times exemplifies my pride in Red Deer College’s spirit of resilience, community and hope,” says RDC President, Dr. Peter Nunoda.
Through activity pledges, payroll deductions commitments, the 50-50 and other activities, RDC staff and faculty raised more than $11,000 for United Way Central Alberta, along with dozens of boxes of diapers and baby supplies, a cart full of coats, boots and winter gear, hundreds of food items and a tub full of toys.
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