This article originally appeared on Nielsen.com.
Our employees at Nielsen are committed to their communities, and we support their passion to make a difference. Every year, we provide 24 hours of dedicated volunteer time to our associates and encourage them to lead projects that develop their skills and align with our values as an organization. Through Nielsen Cares, our global employee volunteer program, our associates mobilize Nielsen’s data and expertise for good, creating shared value in their communities and helping solve some of the world’s biggest challenges.
Nielsen’s relationship with All Hands and Hearts (AHAH) is one example of our associate-led nonprofit relationships. Almost two years ago, some of our passionate employees volunteered for the first time in Houston and helped with the recovery efforts after Hurricane Harvey.
This year, employees traveled to Puerto Rico from July 21-July 27 for the second time since we announced our year-long collaboration with AHAH this past November. Nielsen associates returned to help continue the recovery efforts following Hurricane Maria. During their trip, a group of 11 volunteers from across the continental U.S. were joined by 10 members of the local Nielsen team from San Jose. Together, the group logged 511 volunteer hours, contributing to critical home repairs, community projects, and to begin repairing The Mendez Baseball Field in Yabucoa, which is an important part of the local community’s spirit.
According to the organization, the local community has identified that the greatest persisting need is roofing assistance, so All Hands and Hearts focuses mainly on repairing and rebuilding concrete and corrugated galvanised iron roofs. So far, AHAH has completed over 500 repairs in Yabucoa, and the organization is committed to continuing work on the island through March 2020.
“AHAH does an amazing job teaching people who have no background in construction—so much so that I actually felt like I was able to make a lasting impact on a family’s safety in my short week there,” said Kelly Castellon, a volunteer in Yabucoa and a manager in Nielsen’s Marketing Effectiveness business. “This is without a doubt a favorite opportunity that I have had at Nielsen, and I can’t say enough good things about the program; I hope it gets a broader reach. I really enjoyed the opportunity to be able to give back in a way that was completely different from the work I do day-to-day. I appreciate that Nielsen invested in me as a person and in this Yabucoa community.”
Volunteering is part of the overall employee experience at Nielsen, and these opportunities help associates connect with the company’s mission and purpose while creating long-lasting professional and personal relationships.
“Nielsen takes pride in investing in both our employees’ experiences and our communities; the relationship we’ve built with All Hands and Hearts has allowed us to do both simultaneously,” said Christie Trinidad, senior program manager, Nielsen Global Media Operations. “Facilitating opportunities for our employees to come together to volunteer in areas devastated by natural disaster has also helped our associates foster new relationships, develop new skills, and raise awareness for this incredible organization.”
Importantly, our associates value the volunteer trips as chances to make positive changes in their communities and around the world. These opportunities also help our associates develop leadership skills, feel connected with something greater, and connect with each other.
“This volunteer experience is definitely one of the highlights of my five years at Nielsen in China and in the U.S.,” said Sarah Cummings, a manager at Nielsen and a volunteer in Yabucoa. “It was great to be able to volunteer alongside our colleagues from the San Juan office as we worked on construction and recovery projects for homeowners in Yabucoa, Puerto Rico. The fact that Nielsen supports and encourages associates to volunteer in their communities around the world is a huge part of what I believe makes Nielsen a great place to work.”
As a continuation of our commitment to AHAH, we plan to return to Houston this fall for our third disaster relief effort of the year.
Visit the Nielsen team’s fundraising page to support the mission of All Hands and Hearts-Smart Response.