A culture of giving is evident at Idaho National Laboratory (INL), with over 5,000 employees. The opportunity to make significant and impactful contributions to our community was evident in the 2020 United Way Campaign. The need in eastern Idaho has been pronounced during the pandemic with initial funding waves of support providing brief opportunities for relief.
The goal of the INL campaign was to inspire the hearts and minds of employees to make a sustainable difference for those working families struggling due to challenging economic circumstances. Some 40% of the laboratory’s employees are working from home and those in the facilities are following social distancing guidance. This added to the challenge of inspiring staff to take part in the one-month campaign.
Some of the ways the committee reached out to employees included campaign ambassadors. Volunteers aligned to share information and provide support in providing engagement opportunities. These ambassadors provided the campaign with a personal touch to better reach employees and answer questions or provide additional information.
The ambassadors were also provided access to a website with video links, step-by-step donation instructions, and a virtual game. The game allows the user to set a budget and make decisions to better understand the challenges faced by community members who are Asset Limited Income Constrained and Employed, or the ALICE population, living in Southeast Idaho.
This year, INL employees and leadership pledged over $630,000 to support our friends, family, and neighbors living on the edge of poverty in Southeast Idaho. Those contributions are provided in full to the charities as INL and other local employers make contributions to support the costs of operating the area’s United Way offices.
Our communities are stronger through the actions taken to provide support to local, hardworking families. The Culture of Giving in Eastern Idaho and across our community has been evident during this pandemic.
We appreciate INL employees and community members giving of their time, talents, and treasure in support of those most vulnerable.
By Misty Benjamin, Idaho National Laboratory Community Relations & Philanthropic Program Manager