On Friday June 8, Deloitte employees volunteered for a variety of Catholic Charities programs and agencies as part of Deloitte 2012 IMPACT Day — an annual organization-wide event where Deloitte employees celebrate the beginning of their new fiscal year by giving back to the community and the nonprofit organizations that are dedicated to service all year long.
At the Catholic Charities Washington Heights Ecumenical Food Pantry, volunteers distributed fresh produce along with new vegetable steamers to individuals from the Washington Heights/Inwood communities. The focus of this project was not only to feed the hungry, but also to provide the necessary tools for food pantry clients to prepare healthy meals for their families.
During a morning address to volunteers, Jeanne McGettigan, Catholic Charities Community Services Director of Emergency Food Services, explained the importance of healthy eating for families living in a neighborhood with a proliferation of cheap, deep-fried food and a scarcity of fresh produce markets.
“While we work in providing food to the community, we consider ourselves public health workers,” McGettigan said.
McGettigan discussed how statistics consistently reveal that harmful health issues stemming from deficient nutrition plague low-income areas, making this project particularly important to the community.
Deloitte volunteers spent the morning preparing vegetables and learning how many New Yorkers have come to depend on the pantry in these difficult economic times. As volunteers quickly washed and chopped broccoli, carrots, red peppers and fresh greens, a line of clients formed outside the pantry.
By lunch time, the room was transformed into a health-themed showroom. On one side of the room, bilingual volunteers individually showed clients how to use their new steamers. On the other side, a row of freshly steamed vegetables awaited clients as volunteers served them plates with various homemade dipping sauces to sample.
“The idea of giving back is always good, but our work is especially meaningful today, since we are helping people prepare healthy food and contributing to good nutrition,” said Deloitte volunteer Yohan Bobcombe.
In addition to volunteering at the Washington Heights Ecumenical Food Pantry, Deloitte volunteers also gave back at the following locations:
At Grace Institute, a Catholic Charities affiliated agency that provides tuition-free, practical job training for underserved New York area women, Deloitte IMPACT Day volunteers helped students prepare for upcoming job interviews by giving mock job interviews and assisting students with interviewing skills. View pictures of Deloitte IMPACT Day volunteers working with Grace Institute students.
At the Lt. Joseph P. Kennedy Center, Catholic Charities’ thriving community center located in the heart of Harlem, volunteers helped the center prepare for an upcoming open house by refreshing the building and helping it look clean and new. The IMPACT Day team painted hallways and the exterior of the building, and also painted the outside of the “white building”, which used to serve as a coventry for women religious. View pictures of Deloitte IMPACT Day and see how volunteers dramatically refreshed the appearance of our Kennedy Center.
Another Deloitte IMPACT Day team created beautiful artwork to help improve the emotional well being and quality of life for clients of Beacon of Hope House, which operates residences and a day program for the mentally challenged in Staten Island and the Bronx. Volunteers helped paint multiple canvas paintings to be displayed in four Beacon of Hope House locations. View pictures of Deloitte IMPACT Day volunteers and the art they created for Beacon of Hope House.