Close to one hundred corporate volunteers helped out at a Families’ Temporary Home run by the RÉS Foundation on the outskirts of Budapest on Saturday, April 23, 2016.
Families living in temporary homes are usually in dire financial situation, which makes their options to organizing family events and leisure time limited. The home run by the RÉS Foundation is dedicated to helping the families in temporary homes to spend quality time together. It was this goal that the American Chamber of Commerce in Hungary Foundation (AmCham Foundation) sought to support by organizing its traditional spring corporate volunteering day entitled A Day to Make it Happen. Employees of AmCham member companies helped to renovate the institution’s playground and create a relaxing garden.
The volunteers renovated three existing toys on the grounds of the home by sanding and repainting them, and also built a fourth one. New flowerbeds were planted and cushioned flooring was also installed around the playground. Many of the children who live at the home also joined the volunteers in the spring sunshine, helping out with light tasks. The highlight of the day for the children came when a den of five small kittens was unearthed under a pile of foliage which had been cut earlier.
The RÉS Foundation’s Families’ Temporary Home in the outskirts of Budapest has been operating for 10 years, providing temporary accommodation for families in social crisis situations, especially related to housing, along with the social, psychological and legal help that is often necessary in these situations. Their aim is to provide the families with such assistance that they are able to use and strengthen their own resources and to enable them to become independent and self-sufficient again in the long term.
AmCham’s member companies have been taking part in corporate volunteer days for 16 years. This spring, Tata Consultancy, Lexmark, NCR, KPMG, American Express and XEROX were among the first to join, and the number of people working on the grounds came to almost one hundred with Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Gléda, Urmet, the BME Secondary School and numerous individual volunteers joining in. Many arrived together with their children, setting an example in helping those in need at an early age.
The backyard of the facility was also transformed over the course of the day. Volunteers cleaned up trimmed foliage and bushes, constructed a new stretch of fence to ensure the safety of the children, built benches, planted close to a dozen new trees and created a rock garden.
The AmCham Foundation – in its current form – has been operating since 2001 and has distributed HUF 380 million worth of donations to over ninety institutions working with children. The mission of the AmCham Foundation is to help children in need of social, mental or physical support, to provide transparent and ethical charity services for donor corporations, and to promote corporate social responsibility and the ethos of volunteerism in the Hungarian business culture. (Photoes – Marton Magocsi)