Good Hands on Chicagoland

AllstateGiveBackDayThumb.jpgPaint. Clean. Repair. Nourish. That is exactly what more than a thousand Allstate-organized volunteers across the country did on January 18th to coincide with the second annual Allstate Beyond February Give Back Day. As a company-wide, national day of service, Beyond February Give Back Day promotes the ideals and vision of http://www.martinlutherking.org/Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. nationally by inspiring people to donate their time to worthy causes in their own communities on his day of honor as well as other days throughout the year.

Chicagoland Allstaters answered the call to serve again this year as more than 200 employees volunteered at projects both on and off our Northbrook home office campus. For example, employees worked on a food sorting and assembly project in our cafeteria that produced more than 750 grocery bags and three pallets of food for local charitable organizations WINGS and YWCA Lake County. Our Midwest Region office employees volunteered at the DuSable Museum of African American History where they served as greeters, docents, and gallery guards for the day. Other employees volunteered at the Northern Illinois Food Bank where they boxed, sorted and stocked food.

I was fortunate enough to volunteer with my fellow marketing employees again this year. We were inspired to help beautify and improve the overall learning environment of an inner-city school in my community. We accomplished this by partnering with Lafayette Elementary School which serves Chicagos Ukrainian Village and Humboldt Park neighborhoods. We spent the day sorting through and organizing text books, recycling old books and categorizing books in classroom libraries. Although it was an exhausting process, we ended the day with new friends, a sense of accomplishment and a different outlook for our city and public school system.

The rewards of volunteerism run deep. Volunteer service is a way to make a difference in the lives of others and to give of yourself through serving others. My fellow employees may have made a small difference for the Lafayette students, but, without question, the biggest difference was made in our own lives as we experienced a portion of our community through hands-on work.

While one group will not be able to solve our citys problems, one group can certainly make a corner of our city a little better. There are many ways to make a part of your community and non-profit organizations a little better. I encourage you to visit BeyondFebruary.com to learn about volunteer opportunities that are available in your area now and throughout the year.

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