When Joanna Velazquez’s daughter Sarah was in first grade, she was a member of the Daisies, the first level in Girl Scouts. One day, Velazquez volunteered to lead the troop, and during the meeting, she taught them how to make a craft and to also create their own snack mix.
While this doesn’t seem out of the ordinary, as lots of parents help out with their children’s activities, one aspect of Velazquez’s experience makes it quite different—she was able to use paid volunteer hours to do it, which is just one of the many benefits that she and all employees receive at Avery Point, the Erickson Senior Living-managed community located in Short Pump, Va.
“I was able to take the whole day off, which I spent shopping for the materials needed for the activities. I then prepared everything, and led the meeting,” recalls Velazquez, who is the resident services coordinator at Avery Point. “It was really successful! The girls had fun, and the troop leader said I did an excellent job!”
Velazquez adds that having paid volunteer hours available encourages employees to reach out and help local nonprofit organizations.
Full-time employees at Erickson get 40 volunteer hours to use each year, and part-time workers receive 20 hours. This enables staff to become involved in the community around them and help make their part of the world a better place.
A meaningful difference
Volunteer hours are only one benefit of working at an Erickson community.
“Avery Point is committed to providing an employee experience where team members can really thrive both personally and professionally. We offer a variety of tools and resources to give employees opportunities to help develop solid career paths, further their education, and training to learn new skills,” says Executive Director Todd DeLaney. “Our benefit offerings also provide many options for encouraged paid time off, reimbursement for fitness offerings, resources for financial assistance, and a wide range of options to help provide assistance for mental, emotional, and general health needs. We are fully committed to creating an environment where our employees can make a meaningful difference, continue to develop, and achieve true balance between work and home life.”
Other benefits Erickson employees receive include multiple health care plans and choices (medical, dental, vision), tuition reimbursement, 401K with company match, generous paid time off (sick, personal leave, and vacation, plus the aforementioned paid volunteer hours), discount programs, pet insurance, and much more.
Velazquez says that her paid day spent volunteering gave her the opportunity to do something with her daughter, and was also good for her well-being.
“Erickson really values their employees and encourages giving time to help others,” says Velazquez. “Volunteering is good for employees’ health and overall happiness. Through volunteerism, staff can spend time doing something that they are passionate about that’s outside of work. And the whole community benefits from whatever organization they’re supporting.”
To learn more about career opportunities at Avery Point, visit EricksonSeniorLivingCareers.com.