Each year, NOVEC employees have the chance to work in the community to help organizations through Day of Caring. This year NOVEC HELPS partnered with Western Fairfax Christian Ministries and House of Mercy. Both organizations help families in crisis by providing food, financial assistance, and educational classes along with other services.
While HELPS has assisted both of these groups financially this year, participating in a hands-on fashion was an innovative way for employees to see the impact of their work immediately. In August, nearly 40 NOVEC employees split between the two volunteering locations to help with a wide range of tasks. Kristine Hurt, food pantry manager at WFCM, says having volunteers come to fill the gaps is crucial. “Without the volunteers, we wouldn't have people to bag the food for our clients, to stock the food on the shelves,” Hurt said. “If we didn't have volunteers, we wouldn't be operating.”
Volunteers at Western Fairfax Christian Ministries cleaned and rearranged shelves in the food pantry in the morning and then packed 300 bags of food to be delivered to Chantilly High School in the afternoon. Jessica Torres-Cervetto, NOVEC customer care representative and NOVEC HELPS board member, called the opportunity to participate rewarding. “The feeling was awesome! It was a blessing to be able to give back by being part of this wonderful team.”
In addition to assisting with the food pantry at House of Mercy, volunteers were able to fulfill a longtime goal of the staff. “We have been talking about building a composting bin for a couple of months now,” says Sophia Crooks, program manager at House of Mercy. “Since we are so short staffed, we have had to put other more forefront tasks first, so the NOVEC HELPS volunteers made a huge and long-lasting impact to House of Mercy.” NOVEC HELPS says thank you to all employees who participated and helped make this event a success.