Are you looking for a large summer volunteer event? Try a school refurbishment!
Many organizations use this as a team bonding activity, especially when the weather outside has employees itching to ditch their cubicles.
School refurbishments give employees the opportunity to take part in both indoor projects, like deep cleaning resource rooms to building bookcases for libraries, and outdoor projects like landscaping and painting large murals.
Although employees will argue about the "best" part of these events, one thing is sure — everyone gets excited about them.
Employee volunteers are often able to work with the school's teachers and staff members. These individuals are able to discuss how improvements will impact their students, especially when upgrades have been on the teachers' "wish lists" for years.
For example, rules around grants often keep schools from making improvements to staff lounges even when they need additional storage for classroom print outs or other teacher resources. Volunteers, however, can build new furniture and storage units. They can also build and install shelving.
Other departments that often lack funding — like art and music departments — need volunteers to paint auditoriums or repair seating. Much-loved costume closets have been cleaned and band rooms have been updated with murals of famous musicians from Lisa Simpson to Chance the Rapper.
Once school starts, many teachers and principals send photos of students reacting to the improvements on their first day. If neighborhood schools are chosen, volunteers often see children using new playground equipment or picnic tables in the days and weeks after the event.
Additionally, school refurbishments allow companies to choose different focus areas depending on their employees' strengths. Tech companies have refurbished computer labs. Advertising agencies have focused on schools that were merged and needed to be rebranded. In both instances, the school community couldn't have been more grateful for the volunteers' time and contributions.