Not even a nationwide lockdown induced by the COVID-19 pandemic could stop the employees of QI Philippines from supporting their communities through staff social responsibility (SSR) activities.
“Due to the pandemic, the Philippine offices have been on lockdown as the government restricted all movement to essential travels only. However, we believe that the restrictions should not limit us from being of service to our community. With the will to serve, we were able to find ways to contribute through the virtual fundraising events,” said Robina Aurora Juco, a senior project manager at QI Philippines.
The team decided to organise a series of virtual events with exciting activities that would entice their colleagues to join them in giving back to society while staying back and adhering to social distancing. They brainstormed popular activities that they knew no Filipino could refuse and were brimming with ideas. Ultimately, the three chosen activities – Bingo, a talent show and an auction – topped the list.
To further excite and engage the local staff, the team also branded the fundraising activities with the QI stamp, dubbing them the PH Qards game, QIdol PH and PH AuQtion respectively. The objective of these events was to raise funds to sponsor care packs – dubbed ‘QarePaQs’ – that would be distributed to children with special needs during the Christmas holiday season.
Each QarePaQ was filled with school supplies for children – including different-sized writing pads, notebooks, different coloured pens, crayons, pencils with sharpeners, rulers, glue and face towels – which were fitted into a transparent envelope that could also be reused for the children’s’ school needs.
“Initially, we were worried that we may not be able to raise our target goal to fund 100 QarePaQs – not just because these were online events, but also because we have all been through difficult times since the pandemic hit. We are very proud to have generous employees in the Philippines who actively participated in the name of service and were able to fund not just our original goal of the 100 QarePaQs but three times the amount!” said Robina.
The activities also built stronger bonds amongst the staff and raised employee engagement through the roof, a happy by-product of the fundraising initiatives. The events saw the QI Philippines team experience a range of emotions from friendly competition during the PH Qards game and AuQtion, to encouraging each other during the QIdol PH event, all which strengthened the camaraderie within the team.
One staff said, “It was a fun bonding experience and an effective way to encourage the local offices to participate,” while another said “For me, the BINGO with a cause game was the perfect SSR activity to do while we are all working from home. The event was successful because the committee was able to come up with these kinds of fun-filled events to run online and I really enjoyed it. Kudos to the committee!”
Kudos to the committee indeed as the QI Philippines team was able to collect QarePaQ pledges worth approximately USD$ 1,120 thanks to the series of three events with over 100 participating employees. With the funds raised, the team put together and delivered 300 QarePaQs to children from underserved communities with the support of the attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) Society of the Philippines.
The ADHD Society is a parent-based organisation that ensures support for persons with ADHD to ensure the full attainment of their God-given potential. Together with the Persons with Disability Affairs Division of the City of Mandaluyong, the ADHD Society helped the QI Philippines team to distribute the QarePaQs to the children during the festive season.
“The Philippines family is elated to have embodied the spirit of RYTHM – Raise Yourself To Help Mankind – and brought some joy to 300 underprivileged children who have special needs. No event will be a success without the heightened participation of our employees. Our employees see purpose as a way of bringing meaning to our work and understanding our contribution to the company and our society. Coming up with engaging activities which allowed us to raise funds and make a difference to others, no matter how small of a difference it may be, gives us meaning and purpose,” said Robina.
At the closing ceremony of the fundraising events that was held virtually this past December, RYTHM Foundation Chairperson, Datin Sri Umayal Eswaran who was in attendance said, “If there’s anything the pandemic has taught us, it’s that life can be turned upside down at any moment. We don’t have control of it, but we do have control over the kind of people we choose to be. We don’t know what the next year holds but we can look positively towards the future, focusing on what each and every one of us can do better to uplift communities and people most in need.”