May 31st, 2022 Out of Office message: Today is SAP Mental Health Day and so I will be taking the day to unplug and recharge with friends and family
What is your purpose and how can you achieve it? It’s an interesting and thought-provoking question that often pops in my head when I lose focus, especially today on SAP Mental Health Day! Often we lose track of what drives us and what truly brings us happiness, but perhaps the difficulty is in identifying what that is? The other day, I had this very discussion with some friends
and some conveyed that being a parent embodies this fulfillment. For me, becoming a mother certainly is an important part of the equation but social work will always be the piece that realizes my purpose. Today I was lucky enough to enjoy both – a day off to play with my 1 year old Lili and write this blog about my most recent project.
It is with that in mind that I decided to join SAP’s Pro Bono for Economic Equity program which was founded in early 2021 as part of SAP’s response to the social justice movement. As Chris Putvinski from SAP explains, putting to use a decade-long experience running social sabbatical pro bono consulting programs, SAP decided to develop a program to help strengthen Black-owned businesses and social enterprises by providing them with support and expertise from its employees. The Pro Bono for Economic Equity program was launched as a six-week initiative supporting Black-owned businesses in four U.S. cities: Atlanta, Philadelphia, Chicago, and New York City. SAP employees spend one week working full time with their assigned business, and five weeks working at least eight hours per week. In many instances, given the businesses supported are typically newer and smaller scale, the arrival of SAP volunteers leads to the doubling of an organization’s staff.
The program kicked off in March of 2021, with 48 SAP employees volunteering with 16 businesses. The initial results showed that 95% of businesses felt the program met their expectations and were satisfied with their experience. Meanwhile, 92% said they felt more prepared to address future challenges for their organization.
This year, I have the pleasure of working with Rochelle Porter Design and my amazing colleagues, Rick Isom and Dominic Brennan from SAP. Rochelle is a talented artist and passionate about sustainability. She creates striking patterns you can wear or sprinkle her sunshine in your home. I love her art and had fun matching with my daughter today in Rochelle Porter Design Mommy and me leggings! For SAP Mental Health Day, we did a workout at our local WowMoms in Montreal and then spent the rest of the day gardening and napping. My team and I have less than two weeks to complete our final project for Rochelle Porter Design which I hope will help her run better and lead to sustainable business success. Thank you, SAP for giving us a mental health break and the opportunity to use our “superpowers” to help Black-owned businesses like Rochelle’s. And thank you, Rochelle for introducing us to the beauty that is your art and allowing us to embark on this adventure with you.
Happy Tuesday & Mental Health Day!
Caroline & Aurélie (Lili)