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volunteering, fundamentally alcoan - thoughts from alan cransberg
 
I believe volunteering is fundamental to all Australians.
 
We all know someone who’s a volunteer and we’re often inspired by the great work they do. Whether it’s for a local school, or sporting club or planting a tree to help our environment, volunteering is a critical part of our social fabric.
 
Around 5.4 million people volunteer in Australia each year – that’s around 713 million hours donated to a range of organisations. That’s nearly $70 billion injected into the Australian economy annually.* These figures clearly display Australian’s commitment to volunteerism.
 
Volunteering at Alcoa is a core business practice. During October each year, we celebrate employees’ work in the community around the globe with our Worldwide Month of Service. Check it out on this website - Month of Service is our commitment to celebrating and promoting volunteering.  We have a responsibility to help build and strengthen our communities, and when I hear that 2,000 of my people are out there this month, getting their hands dirty to help others, that makes me proud.
 
Our Australian workforce will join an estimated 47,000 people in 36 countries as part of this initiative. We’ve been doing it since 2006 and is now an annual event around the globe.
 
Corporate volunteering programs play an important role in business. They create opportunities for employees to develop their skills and experiences and they provide invaluable opportunities to create meaningful connections and contributions to our communities.
They also play an important role in recruiting and retaining people, another of today’s challenges facing us all.
 
At Alcoa we invest heavily in a number of volunteer programs.
Our individual volunteering program, known as Bravo!, recognises individual Alcoa employees who spend a minimum of 50 hours per calendar year doing volunteer work for an approved non-profit/non-governmental organisation. In recognition of the employee's effort, Alcoa makes a contribution of US$250 to the non-profit organisation.
 
In 2007, 592 Alcoa employees were given Bravo! grants, reflecting a volunteer contribution of close to 65,000 hours and totalling over $168,000 for their nominated community organisations.
 
At a team level, ACTION (Alcoans Coming Together In Our Neighbourhoods) recognises the collective efforts of at least five Alcoa employees who spend a minimum of four hours on a community service project for a local non-profit/non-governmental organisation.  In recognition of the team's effort, Alcoa matches their time with a financial contribution to the non-profit organisation.
 
In 2007, 47 community projects received ACTION grants totalling more than $156,000 and hands-on support from around 623 Alcoa volunteers across three states.
 
The Alcoa Foundation, based in the US, underpins and funds these important activities.  The focus of the Foundation is to help communities, build partnerships and change lives. Its mission is to actively invest in the quality of life in Alcoa communities’ worldwide, combining funding with hands-on support from our active employee volunteers.
 
The Foundation's grants address global and local needs in over 30 countries by partnering with Alcoa communities. Key areas of focus are conservation and sustainability; global education and workplace skills; business and community partnerships; and safe and healthy children and families.
 
I think our great volunteering effort is something that helps set us apart, it helps define our values as a company. 
 
We’ll let you know how we go this month, and of course all throughout the year.
 
Cheers, Alan
 
(ABS Voluntary Work, Australia Survey (2006). These figures were released in July 2007)


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Alcoa employees from our head office at Booragoon removing introduced flora from native bushland



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Our people help out the Salvation Army with some odd jobs including painting



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Tree planting activities during Month of Service