Painting murals to brighten up an aging inner-city city public school. Running marathons to advocate for rare disease patients. Cleaning up local parks and waterfronts. Fundraising for Haiti earthquake relief. The contributions of Genzyme employees are as varied as their interests and reflect their passion for making a difference in the world – the same passion they bring to their work each day.
As a company, Genzyme is dedicated to empowering our employees to contribute, whether by volunteering their time, fundraising for a cause, or making a charitable donation. Over the years we've established numerous company-sponsored initiatives to encourage employee involvement, including reading programs with local schools, co-development of museum exhibits, fundraising drives for humanitarian relief, and others.
Running for Rare Diseases
Since 2008, an inspiring team of Genzyme employees have run the Boston Marathon to raise money and awareness for the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) – more than $185,000 in total, including a $45,000 grant from Genzyme.
Learn more at the marathon team's website
In 2011, Genzyme staff worldwide volunteered over 8,260 hours of their time to over 120 non-profit organizations and events under one of our most successful employee programs: Genzyme Invests in Volunteer Efforts – aptly abbreviated G.I.V.E. The company rewarded these efforts by distributing corporate grants totaling over $280,000 to the causes our employees chose.
To promote partnership and collaboration, G.I.V.E. requires that employees work in teams of at least four people, volunteering their time and/or raising money for a charity or non-profit of their choosing. Grants for each team can range from $1,000 to $15,000 and are calculated based on time contributed and/or money raised.
In the spirit of a grassroots initiative, Genzyme's employee volunteer program started small. Founded in 2000 as "Dollars for Doers," it operated initially only in Massachusetts, with 12 events and grants totaling just over $6,000. Expanding U.S.-wide the following year, the program grew thanks to the enthusiasm and commitment of our employees. Participation in several more countries soon meant much more than "Dollars" were being raised – and thus the more inclusive G.I.V.E. name was born in 2005.
We're proud to report that over the years the company's G.I.V.E. participation has steadily increased as more and more employees around the world get involved with the issues that mean the most to them. Many employees maintain an ongoing relationship with an organization, participating in numerous activities to earn multiple G.I.V.E. grants for their causes. Often the recipients reflect our employees' professional interests in health and medicine, but the scope of G.I.V.E. is broad – we support a wide variety of causes that our workforce cares deeply about, such as education, homelessness, and the environment. Humanitarian work is a recurring theme, with employees raising thousands of dollars for disaster relief efforts worldwide.
Here are just a few stories to illustrate the impact of our employees' actions:
ALS Association: Inspired by his mother's Lou Gehrig's disease, an intrepid Los Angeles employee has paddled the 32 Mile Catalina Classic Paddleboard Race annually since 2008 in support of disease research. He and a team of colleagues volunteering at the event have raised nearly $80,000 over the years, plus about $25,000 through G.I.V.E.
Nature Conservancy: Since 2007, a team of our Phoenix, Arizona, employees have contributed over 140 hours to clean up their community's streets and parks, supplemented by G.I.V.E. grants of $7,000.
Haiti Earthquake Relief: Following the devastating 2010 earthquake in Haiti, 1,200 Genzyme employees worldwide contributed nearly $75,000 to relief organizations such as the Red Cross, UNICEF, Doctors Without Borders, and many others, qualifying for another $49,000 in G.I.V.E. contributions.
Oxford Children's Hospital: Our employees in the UK have held book sales and raffles, even run marathons and rappelled down buildings, to fundraise for the Oxford Children's Hospital – raising about $9,000 since 2007, matched equally by G.I.V.E. grants.
New York Cares: Since 2006, New York City employees have contributed almost 275 hours – and earned $10,000 in G.I.V.E. money – for New York Cares, the city's biggest umbrella volunteer organization that organizes a wide variety of projects.
Colombianitos: In 2009 our employees in Colombia played in a soccer match to fundraise for Colombianitos, a foundation that supports displaced children who live in violent environments. Our team lost the game but earned a $4,000 G.I.V.E. grant and plans to continue volunteering with the program.
Community Servings: Since 2007, Genzyme volunteers from our various Massachusetts sites have volunteered more than 500 hours preparing meals – and raised $14,000 in G.I.V.E. grants – for Community Servings, a local charity that delivers food to homebound people with serious illnesses.
Asian Tsunami Relief: The Southeast Asian tsunami in 2004 inspired one of the largest charitable contributions by our workforce: more than $90,000 to a range of charities, matched 100% by G.I.V.E. for $180,000 in total.