April 5, 2011
Charleston, W.Va. – Three West Virginia businesses will be honored during National Volunteer Week for outstanding dedication to their communities through service and volunteerism at the second annual Business Volunteerism Awards at the West Virginia Culture Center and Governor’s Mansion in Charleston.
The event will highlight members of the West Virginia Business Volunteer Council and include short presentations from statewide officials and award recipients. The ceremony will take place at noon at the WV Culture Center with a luncheon following at the Governor’s Mansion. The Business Volunteerism Awards is in its second year and recognizes businesses for the important role they play in making West Virginia communities better places to live and work.
Businesses from around the state were nominated for their spirit of corporate volunteerism and community service accomplishments in 2010. Winners include the following:
- Appalachian Power: Appalachian Power (AEP) incorporates service as part of its management structure. In 2010, more than half of the company’s 2,400 employees volunteered their time for either company-sponsored projects or self-initiated service such as coaching little league or serving on a nonprofit board. “Read to Me Day” has been an initiative of AEP for the past 10 years and allows employees to take time from regular work hours to read aloud to children in more than 280 elementary schools. Participation in the program occurs at all levels, from the company president to field employees. Since the program’s beginning, AEP has donated more than 3,000 books to school libraries, benefiting more than 125,000 West Virginia students. AEP also began promoting the WV “eMentoring” program to its employees in 2010. Through this program, employees mentor high school students from across the state using Internet-based programs. The company supports the program by funding required background checks for employee mentors and allowing employees to participate during regular work hours.
"Participating in Read to Me Day has become a company tradition,” said Jeri Matheney, AEP communications director. “It's a great opportunity for our employees to be involved in the communities where they work and live, and they really look forward to this day every year. Our overriding goal is to encourage a love of reading. Good readers make good students, and the best way to turn children into readers is to read aloud to them.”
- DuPont (Washington Works Division): DuPont’s “Fun with Science” Road Show has been an initiative of the company for more than 15 years. The program allows employees to visit elementary schools in West Virginia to give students an exciting look at the scientific disciplines of cryogenics, pyrotechnics and polymer science. In 2010, students learned to use the scientific techniques to create an iodine clock, turn a banana into a hammer, and ignite gas-filled balloons. More than 40,000 children have benefited from the project since its beginning. The company also supports the Ohio River Sweep, known as the largest river clean-up project in the world. In 2010, approximately 90 DuPont employees and community volunteers participated in the project. DuPont also participates in Partners in Education, career days at primary and secondary schools, and an employee community fund. In 2010, more than $170,000 was given to area organizations through this fund.
- Enterprise Rent-A-Car: Enterprise Rent-A-Car’s community service initiatives are almost entirely employee-driven. In 2010, Enterprise employees volunteered their time to benefit organizations like the American Cancer Society, March of Dimes, Alzheimer’s Association, Susan G. Komen, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Salvation Army, Union Mission, College Summit and Habitat for Humanity, just to name a few. Enterprise employees from West Virginia logged more than 7,000 volunteer hours in 2010. This volunteer time was a combination of both personal and company-sponsored time. In addition to being given company time to volunteer for various community service efforts, the Enterprise Holdings Foundation regularly gives grants to the nonprofit organizations with which its employees volunteer their time. Enterprise prides itself on leading by example, with members of management from all levels of the company participating in community activities.
For more information on the West Virginia Business Volunteer Council or to RSVP for the Business Volunteerism Awards ceremony and luncheon, contact Kellie Aikman at (304) 558-0111 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit www.volunteerwv.org for more information about Volunteer West Virginia.
The West Virginia Business Volunteer Council (BVC) is a statewide initiative open to all private sector businesses, labor organizations, nonprofit organizations, and business and professional associations. The BVC is the way for the private sector to join government and non-profits in building a better West Virginia through volunteer service. The BVC is a primary resource for encouraging, educating, and connecting businesses that support employee volunteer programs as a business strategy. The BVC is a program of Volunteer West Virginia, the state’s Commission for National and Community Service, which provides critical administrative resources, guidance, and support, in addition to access to hundreds of non-profit agencies in the Mountain State through www.volunteerwv.org. To learn more about the West Virginia Business Volunteer Council, visit www.volunteerwv.org.
For a detailed list of award recipients, click here.