Doing good together: one day. 100 countries. 3.5 million people

Launched in Israel in 2007, Good Deeds Day is now a global movement that brings together the simple idea that every single person can do something good, be it large or small, to help others and make a lasting difference. 

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Connecting people

Hannah Wojno, Director of Good Deeds Day was intrigued by how this one day brought people together and united them around the idea of doing good.

From its humble beginnings, Good Deeds Day quickly spread globally. Hannah talked about the early days; “We could see the potential of the idea when people started asking about it around the world. It’s a day that connects people and organisations to their communities through volunteering on a grand scale. People are also drawn to being part of a fun and positive day and once they become involved, it’s something they look forward to each year.”

It was certainly this notion that led Viva Energy Australia to becoming the first Australian corporation to embrace Good Deeds Day. “We have a strong culture within our business of supporting our community and wanted to create momentum around volunteering. Good Deeds linked really well to all elements of our community program and it was a great way of encouraging our people to get more involved.” said Jo Powell, Viva Energy’s Community Manager.

“We were also excited to be part of an international initiative that was making real and genuine social change. In fact, we were so taken by the idea, we extended the day to a week of good deeds. This allows our people to do as little or as much volunteering as they want to or are able to over that week.”

The simple act of doing good

Last year, over 750 people within our company gave 650 hours of their time to participate in over 1,000 good deeds and we’re expecting it to be even bigger in 2018.  Jo feels that the initiative has been successful because of our Community Ambassadors – who are employees that also help coordinate our community program. Our Community Ambassadors bring Good Deeds alive by organising a range of activities across the business. One of our Community Ambassadors, Deborah McMahon is a strong advocate of our community program.

Deborah “can’t see why anyone wouldn’t be passionate about helping the community and getting involved.”

“There should be more initiatives like this. If you can help someone it’s good for yourself but you’re also helping change people’s lives. This is something we could all focus on doing a bit more of.”

Deborah has used this passion to inspire the team in Perth into action. Together, they will spend Good Deeds Week volunteering with Coastcare weeding, planting and caring for the environment.  This is in addition to cooking for the homeless, donating blood through the Australian Red Cross, and collecting non-perishable food and school necessities for the less fortunate.

“When I found out what the program was about, I knew I could get the team involved and really make an impact.”

From Perth to Melbourne, and Geelong to Brisbane, our teams across the country are taking part in good deeds supporting our community partners to stomp out the education gap through the Cathy Freeman Foundation, mentoring through headspace, raising money and making ribbons for White Ribbon Australia, assembling solar lights, making birthday cards for the Pyjama Foundation and Council for Aboriginal Alcohol Program Services, and much more.

Turning a passion for doing good into a global movement

It is estimated that in 2018 over 3.5 million people in over 100 countries will participate in Good Deeds Day.

Hannah is most proud of how Good Deeds Day has grown globally with organisations and volunteer groups adopting the day as a tool to deliver their corporate social responsibility commitments.

“More organisations are using the day to support a strategic purpose and to connect their employees with what’s happening in the community.”

“The impact of doing good is so massive. When it is embraced in the most authentic way, it becomes deeply entrenched. I would like to see it grow in more countries and with more people participating. However, some countries take a slower path and others jump in feet first depending on the culture of volunteering that already exists in that country.”

In Brazil, Good Deeds Day started off in Sau Paulo as a small volunteer centre with a group of young people wanting to make a difference and it’s grown into an organisation working across the country that brings together thousands of volunteers on one day.

This year, Hannah will be spending International Good Deeds Day on 15 April in Mexico visiting partners who have been working tirelessly all year to plan their good deed projects. “There will be a lot of events with non-profit organisations showcasing their work, volunteer activities, and local celebrities also getting involved. I’m excited to see what they’ve put together.”

For Hannah, the partnership with Viva Energy resulted in Good Deeds being launched in Australia. “We’re slowly gaining momentum and we’re proud of the work Viva Energy are doing. Your efforts are wonderful and it’s really helping to lead the way in Australia.”  

Hannah also recognised that a big part of growing Good Deeds Day internationally is quite literally in being able to speak the right language. So this year, gather a few friends or your family and think about what your community needs and how you can be part of it, and “let’s do good together”. 

Interested in learning more about Viva Energy’s Community Program?

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