Getting paid to volunteer--new program announced at Grand Rapids based company
Electrical contracting firm Feyen Zylstra unveiled a new program on Wednesday that will pay employees of the Grand Rapids based company to volunteer at area non-profits. And they don't care where.
The locally owned firm unveiled FZimpact at their Grand Rapids headquarters as ten non-profits joined them in the hopes of recruiting volunteers of their own. Feyen Zylstra CEO Nate Keotje said the program represents that there is more to business than the bottom line.
“We see our purpose and the purpose of all business to have a positive impact on the lives of people, and that doesn’t mean profit is not important, certainly you need that to be able do things, like this," Keotje said. "But really for us, this is about how to we take a purpose that says, have a positive impact on the lives of people, and spread that to communities so it becomes less corporate giving, and more employee driven,” he said.
One of the more interesting things about the program is the fact that employees are not given a list of pre-selected non-profits that qualify for the paid time off, but will have the freedom to serve wherever they choose.
“The crux of this is putting it in the hands of our employees that they can go out and volunteer their time for the things that they are passionate for, that they are excited about," said Keotje. "Maybe organizations that have had a positive impact on their lives in some way shape or form that they want to give back to."
Feyen Zylstra says it has 450 employees, and at 8 hours of volunteer work each, that will translate into 3600 hours annually that employees can give back to the community.