DEARBORN, Mich., Sept. 19, 2013 - Producing innovative, stylish and exciting automobiles is a labor of love for Ford Motor Company employees. And so is creating a better world.
More than 12,500 Ford employees, retirees and dealers joined the Ford Volunteer Corps and marched into local communities on six continents to participate in the 8th annual Ford Global Week of Caring. Ford volunteers completed 277 community service projects in 27 countries from China to Australia and Europe to the Americas.
Ford employees built shelters for homeless children in China, renovated a community youth center in Germany, provided clean drinking water facilities in India and South Africa, constructed houses in Mexico, and participated in environmental restoration activities in Australia.
“Global Week is a snapshot of the work Ford volunteers do 52 weeks a year,” said Janet Lawson, director, Ford Volunteer Corps. “Creating a better world is a big job, but Ford and its employees are up for the challenge. We’re in this for long haul.”
Ford Global Week of Caring is the highlight of a year-round campaign to put Ford’s people power to work improving the lives of people and making the world a better place. Nonprofit organizations in Europe and the Asia Pacific and Africa region shared more than $225,000 in grants to buy the tools, supplies and materials for their projects. Ford Motor Company Fund also contributed more than $90,000 to support U.S.-based activities.
“It’s not just about profitability at Ford. It’s about being responsible to the communities where we do business,” said Jim Vella, president, Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. “We’ve been given so much, it’s important that we give back and help people realize their dreams.”
Wendi Brantley knows about dreams coming true. She moved her family into a Ford-sponsored Habitat for Humanity home in Detroit eight years ago. Today, she still works with Habitat Detroit, helping others realize the dream of owning a home.
“Ford’s help gave me life again. You can’t put into words what Ford volunteers have done for me,” said Brantley. “There’s not the right kind of thank you or meal you could cook to show your gratitude for the safe, affordable, energy efficient house. It changed my life.”
In addition to helping build homes for Habitat for Humanity, Ford volunteers in 15 U.S. states from Alaska, Arizona and California to Florida, New York and Texas rehabilitated shelters, packed and distributed food for the hungry, created urban vegetable gardens, and assisted military veterans including sponsoring an Honor Flight for World War II veterans from Kansas City to visit the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.
“It’s a way to do something good for the community, get out of the office environment and do some hard work,” said Alicia Grazioli, a Ford volunteer who works in Truck Safety. “Ford really does walk the walk. We have teams all over the area. I’m really proud to be part of that.”
To see more photos from Ford Global Week of Caring visit our flickr page here and to follow the activities of Ford Motor Company Fund on facebook "like" us at facebook.com/pages/Ford-in-the-Community.