We have an employee-driven community service initiative named CEC Community. All of our offices participate regularly, and there are a lot of different types of community activities that qualify. Groups benefitted by these activities include local children, local adults, the environment, and even animals! Below is a snapshot of just a few of the activities that have taken place around the CEC footprint this summer.
When the Stanley Cup Finals were being held in late May through early June, our St. Louis and Boston offices held a friendly wager: The office whose city lost the championship would donate $500 to a charity of the winner’s choice. St. Louis won the Stanley Cup, and they chose the St. Louis Blues for Kids as their charity! Blues for Kids focuses on four areas of giving, which include cancer care and awareness, health and wellness, education, and youth hockey development.
The Austin office packed gift bags of pencils and snacks for approximately 400 students of a nearby elementary school for their STARR Testing (state exams). The underprivileged school didn’t have enough money for all of the students to have a pencil for the testing. In addition to purchasing, packing, and delivering these supplies and snacks, our staff briefly spoke to the kids about what it’s like to be an engineer.
One of our Columbus employees has been collecting old plotter tubes for the five years he has been at CEC. He donates them to the Carolina Tiger Rescue (outside of Raleigh, NC). The rescue has more than 30 cats and can give them one tube each day. Keepers put food and other treats in the tubes as an enrichment activity.
Employees from Pittsburgh and Export hosted a field trip regarding Washington County, PA geology and ecology. The Allegheny Land Trust requires a field trip for those in the process of obtaining a Pennsylvania Naturalist certification and this trip qualified. The CEC team covered topics such as geologic history, stratigraphy, maps, water quality, geomorphology, and structure. The students were primarily retirees and schoolteachers.
In Phoenix, two of our employees took part in the Southern Gila Water Festival. The festival is a community-sponsored event organized by the University of Arizona with the goal of teaching approximately 300 fourth graders about water resources and responsible water conservation. The festival included four modules: Water Cycle, Ground Water, Watershed Management, and Water Conservation. The students rotated through the modules, receiving a 30-minute hands-on seminar on each topic.
In Chicago, 15 employees and family members participated in the annual DuPage County River Sweep. Volunteers for this stream cleanup and restoration event help pick up debris in and along the branches of the DuPage River and restore nearby land back to its natural state. This year’s totals are not yet available, but last year’s event drew over 800 volunteers with a collection of nine tons of debris! Our Chicago office team worked at the McDowell Grove site.
A group of Toledo employees participated in a lunch-packing event for an organization named Food For Thought, which provides meals for those who face food insecurity. Volunteers made peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to be packed into bags with other snacks. The CEC group helped make 20–25 sandwiches, and the grand total of the whole volunteer group was probably more than 200 sandwiches. After packing, our group helped clean the tables and floors. The lunches were then distributed the following day to those in need around the downtown area.
Stay tuned for recaps of future CEC Community activities! Do you have any recommendations for what our next volunteer activity should be? Let us know in the comments below!