Avery Dennison’s Month of Giving: Supporting UNICEF and Helping Children Through COVID-19 | Avery Dennison

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Avery Dennison’s Month of Giving: Supporting UNICEF and Helping Children Through COVID-19

COVID-19 couldn’t stop Avery Dennison employees from the Label and Graphics Materials division across EMENA from joining forces to give back to an important cause. A ‘Month of Giving’ - November 6 through December 6 - suggested by a passionate team, inspired a variety of virtual activities at different sites. The goal was to raise funds for UNICEF, helping the organization to slow the spread of the pandemic and to minimize its impact on children in Europe by supplying essentials of life.

In just a few months, the coronavirus became a global pandemic, disrupting hundreds of millions of lives across the world. Many schools, businesses and borders have closed in an attempt to contain the spread of this deadly disease. It’s been a challenging year for everyone, and the Avery Dennison team has continued to support each other throughout, while taking extra measures to keep safe.

But what if you are one of the millions of people across the world who live in areas (including  many in Europe) where daily essentials are not accessible? Millions of families and children are experiencing illness, isolation, fear and loss of livelihoods. Did you know...

handwashing

Handwashing
Around 40% of the world’s population (3 billion people) doesn’t have soap and water at home, and an estimated 900 million children lack handwashing facilities at school.

education

Education
School closures due to COVID-19 have interrupted the education of 1.6 billion children and young people. Never before have so many vulnerable children lost access to education at the same time. Even short disruptions in children’s schooling can have long-lasting negative impacts, including child marriage and child labour.

nutrition

Nutrition
Worldwide, an extra 6.7 million children could become acutely malnourished due to the (indirect) impact of COVID-19 (adding to 47 million children who were already malnourished).

The UNICEF Data Hub makes it clear that COVID-19 is creating many challenges. UNICEF is working to slow the spread of COVID-19 to minimize its impact on children worldwide - from delivering life-saving health supplies and building water and hygiene facilities, to keeping children connected to education and safety.  

The Avery Dennison EMENA team found inspiration from this community work and decided to support UNICEF and their efforts. By the end of the campaign, our employees raised €43,354.08. Our leadership team doubled the funds and rounded it up for a total sum of €100,000. 

Els Boom, senior manager, business communications, said that the initiative was a great example of strong commitment to a good cause, “Helping our communities is part of the DNA of Avery Dennison. Central to our corporate values is a steadfast commitment to contributing time and resources in the communities where we live and work, and it is always inspiring to see the enthusiasm and imagination that colleagues bring to initiatives like this. That imagination was especially important in the face of pandemic restrictions.”

Also part of the organizing team were Anisha Pillai, Natalia Karavassilis, Simonas Mockus, Early Careers Program colleagues, and Carla Perroni, intern. The team was delighted with the results, “When we started our challenge in the Early Careers Program to join a community project, we also collaborated with other team members, bringing the EMENA ‘Month of Giving’ campaign to life. We knew this would be a good idea, but as the month continued we saw an especially amazing level of commitment and engagement (mostly virtual) from our employees across sites in different countries, and it was great to see a sense of fun and friendly competition between colleagues to see who could raise the most.” 

A long company history of financial support and employee volunteerism meant that teams at different sites were well prepared to take part. Examples included a donation platform; selling and donating holiday pay and donations from salaries; interactive virtual quizzes, a “Make me Laugh” email chain, sharing jokes for a €5 donation to UNICEF; a virtual wine tasting event and bake sale; a sale of handcrafted gifts made by colleagues’ children and much more. The competitive element to fundraising was enthusiastically received by sites (with a raffle to play, and winning large and small sites).

Jane Kellas, from UNICEF Emergency Fundraising Team, joined our Virtual Town Hall, where we announced the results of the campaign. She shared, “Your contribution could not have turned up at a better moment. We have to keep those services going for children who are still stuck locked out of closed schools, and in families under serious pressure especially at dinner time as lost jobs and economic collapse continue to hurt children across the world including in Europe. Thank you so much for your support, solidarity and empathy in helping us reach children and families who are struggling so much. For example, your donation is enough to buy another 2,000 hygiene kits to keep refugee families safe from the virus in Greece; 9,000 children in Kosovo connected to online learning; and buy PPE for over 1,000 health workers in Bosnia & Herzegovina so that they can keep providing vital health services for children. That’s enough to reach almost 30,000 children! We are so grateful to you.” 

Team members Lynsey Greenall and Nicola Birch, from our Human Resources team shared, “We enjoyed competing between sites, but this was all about supporting the children who need our help. We have been able to send a very significant donation to UNICEF, who will be able to provide more of life’s essentials to children and their families dealing with COVID challenges. That was always the most important thing.” 

We are #strongertogether!

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