Published on September 28th, 2015 | by Subhash Nair


Ford & Sime Darby Auto Connexion Work with Women’s Aid Organisation

Ford Motor Company has today announced a new initiative that strengthens its leadership in community service and provide employees an innovative opportunity to explore their growing interest in civic engagement and volunteering.

Ford and Executive Chairman Bill Ford are launching the Bill Ford Better World Challenge, a global grant program that will award up to US$500,000 to community service projects identified by company employees. The program, jointly funded by the company and Bill Ford, will work in tandem with Ford Volunteer Corps – Ford’s international network of 30,000 volunteers that is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

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The Ford Volunteer Corps was launched by Bill Ford in 2005 in response to the devastating Indian Ocean tsunami. Assisting in post-tsunami rebuilding efforts was among the Corps’ first work, as employees from Ford Thailand took a 14-hour bus ride to spend a week at a time in sweltering conditions mixing concrete, making roof tiles, digging foundations, building walls and helping villagers start to get their lives back.

That outreach and sense of community has grown into a highly coordinated global network in which each year 30,000 volunteers work on 1,600 projects across six continents. Whether helping children read, fighting hunger or delivering clean water, thousands of Ford volunteers have worked on 9,000 projects in more than 40 countries, contributing more than 1 million hours of community service.

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To expand on that, the Bill Ford Better World Challenge aims to give employee volunteers the opportunity to work with local groups where Ford does business to apply for community service project funding under the new grant program. The projects will focus on three categories that create sustainable solutions to community needs – mobility; basic needs such as food and shelter; and water-related issues including access, sanitation and hygiene. Funding is expected to be awarded by the middle of 2016.

Meantime, the Ford Volunteer Corps’ signature Global Week of Caring is being expanded from one week in September to the entire month. Ford Global Caring Month will open more opportunities for Ford employees to volunteer and broaden the company’s global focus on community service.

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Nearly 20,000 volunteers are expected to work on 360 projects around the world – from cleaning up beaches in Angola to renovating a daycare for children with disabilities in the United Kingdom.

As part of Global Caring Month in Malaysia, Ford Motor Company recently worked with the Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO). Ford employees, together with the team from Ford’s local distribution partner Sime Darby Auto Connexion (SDAC), contributed their time and energy towards brightening the WAO’s children’s play area with new toys and purchased daily necessities valued at RM 20,370.

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A new Nielsen survey among 1,000 U.S. respondents over the age of 18 found 63 percent of the Millennials in the group felt community volunteering was important, compared to 56 percent among the rest of the respondents. More than half of the Millennials said they would volunteer for charity instead of giving money, versus 17 percent who said they would prefer to only send money. Millennials are typically defined as people born from 1982 to 2004.

About the Author

Written work on @subhashtag on instagram. Autophiles Malaysia on Youtube.

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