This October, SAP Global Month of Service goes into its 15th round! Are you ready?
Kicking off the celebration early, we are proud to be sharing a selection of 15 inspiring volunteer experiences over the coming weeks leading up to the beginning of October.
SAP Global Month of Service, it is our company’s largest volunteer initiative. In 2018, employees volunteered in more than 900 projects in communities around the world. And it doesn’t stop with Month of Service! Our employees are leading meaningful volunteer events year-round, when and where the need arises.
The first story comes to you from Buenos Aires, Argentina, and was written by our colleague Ezequiel Massa, who shared this blog as part of Pride Month.
It shows how bridges can be built, perspectives can be changed, and lasting impact can be made through the power of volunteering
PRIDE@SAP + CSR = CASA TRANS
Pride@SAP’s main goal is to promote inclusion of the LGBTIQ+ community as well as create a safe, nurturing work environment where everyone can be authentic. Anyone is welcome to join, no matter their sexual orientation, gender identity or its expression.
At SAP Argentina, our local network chapter was founded in 2015. Since then, we have accomplished quite a lot, but one of the feats that stand out is our efforts to empower the transgender community. When better to talk about this than LGBTIQ+ Pride Month?
In 2018, we liaised with our local CSR Committee to start working on an educational program. Together with the Secretary of Human Rights and Cultural Pluralism, we embarked on a new project at Casa Trans, an organization that provides counseling, support and learning opportunities to the transgender population in the city of Buenos Aires.
After several brainstorming sessions, we grasped the needs of the organization and the people who make use of their services and developed a learning program on computing. Our lessons covered several topics, including the Office Suite, the Internet, and social media, résumé-building and mock job interviews, among others.
Alma Ravier, one of the beneficiaries, stated: “I’ve learned a lot about computers. I can now use Word and Excel. I even learned how to write my own résumé. We also had call center agent training sessions where they let us know how these work environments usually operate, their goals, strengths, and weaknesses.”
We received great feedback and were awarded special recognition by the Secretary of Human Rights and Cultural Pluralism. Therefore, we set ourselves a new goal this year, an even more challenging one: Besides redesigning our computing learning program and hosting a second round for newcomers, we decided it was time to also provide an English course for those willing to learn a new language.
In the words of some of our 20+ volunteers who make up the SAP team in charge of preparing the material and delivering the weekly lessons at Casa Trans:
“I’m happy to help and learn about them and their realities. They’ve had to face things I haven’t just for being who they are but are still looking to study, learn and progress.” Mariano Skulj
“Everyone should volunteer at Casa Trans. It’s inspiring to see how eager they are to learn.” Luciano Tolenti
“I love volunteering at Casa Trans and helping a community that’s often relegated by society. I want them to know that they matter. If it weren’t for SAP, I don’t think I would have ever done this on my own.” Eugenia Linares Traiman
“There were times in my life when I felt rejected and vulnerable for having to hide my true self. I was lucky enough to grow past that and can now collaborate with people who need to feel included. It’s not just about delivering a lesson but helping them understand that we care about their progress and that they can become whoever they want to be.” Karen Kauffman
For me, volunteering at Casa Trans and enabling the transgender community to build a better future for themselves has been a truly rewarding journey. I’ve had the chance to learn a lot about their needs and aspirations and look forward to continuing our work together. Besides, it fills me with pride to say we’ve leveraged the content that we developed for this organization with other CSR initiatives, such as Peregrina and Fundación Boca. Working as one team is one of SAP’s premises: We build bridges, not silos.