If you see Batman dangling from the side of a Calgary skyscraper on Thursday morning, don’t call emergency services. For David Yee, the opportunity to don a cape and rappel from 30 stories up offers a rare chance to take his climbing to a new level, see the city from a birds-eye view and raise funds for a good cause.
“I like to give back to my community in ways that matter,” says Yee, regulatory analyst at TransCanada. “I’ve done wall climbing before, but nothing like this – so yeah, I’m a little nervous. I think once you’re on the side it will be neat; although I hear it might be windy and stormy that day.”
But braving the wind is worth it for Yee and his team of TransCanada employees taking part in the Easter Seals Drop Zone event.
“I’m a dad to an active two-year-old son, but I can recognize the difficulties and costs families with disabled children can face,” adds Yee. “I personally raised $1,400, which is not as much as some of the people on the team, but was thrilled and thankful for the support and donations from my co-workers.”
Get Empowered month
The Easter Seals Drop Zone is one of the kick-off events for TransCanada’s second annual ‘Get Empowered’ month. Throughout September, events across the company’s three operating countries will include feats like this one.
They’ll wear hard hats to build a home for a family in need, help restore gardens at shelters and parks, shoot hoops to feed hungry children, pull an airplane to drive social change for families and remove fences to save wildlife.
“Year-round, TransCanada matches employee donations and volunteering hours through our Empower program. The benefit of this program is it’s completely employee driven,” says TransCanada’s Empower program lead, Ashley Wishart. “Through Get Empowered month, the company matches employee giving by 200 per cent. That means a lot, both to employees and to the local causes that matter to them.”
Working toward a common goal
This month-long campaign runs September 1 to 30, and celebrates TransCanada’s people and the causes they care about. The Get Empowered campaign offers opportunities for groups and departments to work toward a common goal and give back in a way that matters most to their local communities, especially during tougher economic times.
“TransCanada truly values the opportunity to give back to our communities,” says Andrea Jalbert, vice-president of Community and Sustainability at TransCanada. “We have a culture of generosity and genuine caring at TransCanada. That energy and commitment to being great corporate citizens doesn’t go away when times get tough. Even in a difficult economic climate, we recognize that small acts like giving or volunteering can make big differences for people in need.”
Making a difference
In just 30 days last year, TransCanada employees and contractors directed more than $500,000 to 301 U.S. and 427 Canadian registered charities. They logged 2,700 volunteer hours with 76 charities earning $25,214 in volunteer rewards to give to the causes they care about.
“We’re really excited for the second annual Get Empowered campaign. The enthusiasm and generosity our employees and contractors demonstrated last year was amazing,” says Wishart. “We always say, ‘volunteers don’t have time, they have heart.’ And no one has more heart than those who give of their time and personal finances to change lives in their communities.”
“At TransCanada, we don’t just build energy infrastructure. We also build relationships,” says Jalbert. “It is actions like this shown by our employees that build strong and vibrant communities across North America.”
Get Empowered with Us
We welcome opportunities to volunteer and give back to the communities we care about. Help us connect your cause with passionate employees across North America by singing up for our Causes Portal through our partner in giving, Benevity. You can promote special fundraising campaigns, seek out skilled volunteers and receive donations quickly and efficiently through electronic funds transfer or PayPal.
For more information on Empower, check out employee giving and volunteering in TransCanada’s 2014 Corporate Social Responsibility Report or visit transcanada.com/employee-giving. TransCanada also has a robust community investment program that donated $14.6 million to over 1,400 non-profit organizations across North America.
For more information on how your non-profit organization could receive donations and recruit volunteers, check out the informational video. Keep up with the month-long campaign by following @TransCanada on Twitter and #TCEmpower to see our volunteers in action.