Editor's Note: It's that time of year again, which means our signature holiday program, SDGivE, is back and better than ever. Through SDGivE, employee volunteers dedicate their time and talent to spread kindness and cheer to those in need.
This holiday season, employees have put together more than 50 volunteer service projects ranging from holiday meal distributions for unsheltered individuals to essential items and holiday gift drives for women, children, and refugees.
Including time and talent, we are donating more than $130,000 to support our employees and the causes in which they care. Many children associate this time of year with gifts when it comes to holidays. They may not understand that their family is facing economic hardship or dealing with the struggles of an ill family member, which can cause financial strain and impact a family's ability to purchase presents.
To help ease some of the holiday strain for families in need, our employees are teaming up to support toy drives and holiday activities that will enable thousands of San Diegans to receive a unique holiday gift or experience.
Employees kicked off these efforts by partnering with Reality Changers to put together care packages for college freshman, giving them some encouragement before they go into finals and high school seniors to celebrate the completion of their college applications and encourage them to keep going.
Based in southeast San Diego, Reality Changers prepares youth to become first-generation college graduates and agents of change in their communities. We also teamed up with Girls Rising, a local nonprofit that helps underserved girls achieve success through an individual mentor that serves as a positive, consistent role model in their lives, as well as New Haven Youth and Family Services, providing professional care, education and treatment for youth and their families with emotional, behavioral and learning challenges.
Through SDGivE, we provided financial and volunteer support for each organization's holiday celebration, where children received a festive holiday meal, gifts, and uplifting holiday messages.
From toy and food drives to holiday celebrations, employees had the opportunity to give back, connect with members of our community and support more than 700 families in need. These projects not only have a profound impact on local families, they also deeply influence the volunteers. We have participated in the Armed Services YMCA Operation Joy Toy Program for many years. Following this year's 32nd annual event, some of our employees shared their experience as a volunteer.
"Many military spouses have their partners deployed during this holiday season and it was meaningful to give something back to the community as a show of support and thanks for their families service and sacrifices to our nation," said Daniel Dietmeyer, Team Lead – Transmission Protection and Automation.
"Serving families at this event helps to put me in the holiday spirit of appreciation and gratitude. Until my first ASYMCA Joy Toy event, I never knew how modest the salaries of our enlisted families are. It's part of the explanation for their touching thanks. Yet nothing is as touching as their humble appreciation for our presence there. Thank you for this annual opportunity!" – Terry Durbin, Supply Management Project Manager
"Volunteering at Operation Joy Toy helped make the holidays feel that much more special as a way of giving back to all the military families who really deserved a special holiday," said Pamela Carpenter, SDG&E Category Management Advisor.
This month, our employees are also teaming up with Arc of San Diego, Boys & Girls Club, GernateHope, Hannah's Family Center, Milvet, Monarch School, San Diego & Imperial Labor Council, and San Diego Youth & Community Services to bring holiday joy to unsheltered children and at-risk youth, active-duty military, victims of human trafficking, and struggling families.
Season of Giving
Through SDGivE, more than 300 of our employees will be out in the community, serving the causes that matter most to them.
Each week, check out our NewsCenter to see what they have been up to in our community!