At the Social Days, which have taken place annually since they were launched in 2011, SIX employees work together on charitable or environmental causes for a day. By doing so, SIX is able to make a contribution to society and the environment. The Social Days also offer the opportunity for employees to look at the world beyond their work cubicle and to get to know employees from other divisions.
Until now, Social Days were limited to Switzerland, but 2017, for the very first time, they were also held in Luxembourg and the UK. The social or environmental projects took place between September and October.
What happens when employees of SIX leave the financial world for a day to work for the environment and society? The Social Days video provides an insight.
In Luxembourg a social project was selected. Employees helped at the national Collecting and Sorting Center of the organizations “Red Cross Luxembourgeoise” and “Caritas Luxembourg.” The seven volunteers were split in three groups. The first group was assigned to sort the clothes according to their condition, the second one separated male/female clothes and did the final sorting. The last group had the task to fold the clothes and put them in boxes by size and category. All volunteers were invited to come back next year!
In Switzerland the environment took precedence this year. Around 40 colleagues carried out nature conservation work in the Jurapark Aargau in mid-September, tending woodland edges, cleaning walls and collecting fruit in bright sunshine. Graded woodland edges help promote tree and shrub diversity while at the same time creating the necessary space for rare species that are worth encouraging. The volunteers used the cuttings and branches to build piles of brush and wood for small animals like weasels to live in.
At the second nature conservation session in the Binz and Allmend districts of Zurich at the beginning of October, once again more than 40 members of staff gathered up the clippings from the previously mown areas and transported them away. They also removed invasive new species from the conservation areas. These invasive new species spread rapidly and threaten the native flora. The heavy rain in the morning did not dampen the volunteers’ enthusiasm. They were fully committed to their task, and were rewarded when the sun finally made an appearance in the afternoon.
In London the emphasis was largely on socializing. The London office spent their day at Age UK Lewisham and Southwark, where they helped out with everything from preparing lunch, to gardening, to joining in the afternoon Zumba class. The residents were kind, open and far from shy – especially when it came to instructing volunteers on how to make a decent cup of tea! The Age UK Lewisham and Southwark centre is a local charity that provides essential support to people over 50. The charity’s overall aim is to improve life for older people, especially those who are vulnerable and frail facing common challenges around care, illness, isolation and finance.
A big thank you to all the volunteers for your fantastic efforts!