Over 1,000 Cisconians from all over the world contributed 2,605 hours to community causes they care about during Cisco Secure’s Global Week of Giving. Employee volunteerism is not only a value, but an action as every year team members can spend up to 80 paid hours giving back through Cisco’s Time2Give program.

Over this year’s Global Week of Giving team members participated in over 30 in-person and virtual events from creating educational materials in Bangalore and Prague to sorting and preparing food from Oregon to Texas to cleaning parks, gardening and donating.

Global Week of Giving Vision

While “Cisco employees do good all year long, Global Week of Giving was our way of both recognizing the goodness that is already happening and creating new ways for people to make an impact together. No matter your schedule or interest, our goal was to have something for everyone,” explained Jean Cutter, program manager, Cisco Secure employee experience.

“Cisco employees do good all year long, Global Week of Giving was our way of both recognizing the goodness that is already happening and creating new ways for people to make an impact together.” – Jean Cutter, Program Manager, Cisco Secure Employee Experience

Local Champions coordinated in-person volunteer efforts resulting in more than 1,000 team members contributing to their communities. Virtually, 534 Cisconians attended sessions with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and World Central Kitchen to learn more about their work and every attendee’s presence became a $10 donation to these organizations. In total, Cisco team members raised $25,000 throughout the week including for these organizations and a fund created by and for Cisco’s security community, supporting the causes that team members care about most. This curated selection of organizations advocate for equitable food access, environmental sustainability and education. 

Global Impact

Over 500 team members in Bangalore volunteered their time creating teaching, learning and tactile materials for children with autism, developmental disabilities and visual impairment with the organization GiftAbled, prepared medical supplies with Karunashraya Hospice Trust, and hosted a virtual event with U&I Trust to provide relevant worldwide content for U&I students.

“Our volunteer team in Bangalore stays connected through a WebEx space and has continued volunteering past Global Week of Giving. I love being able to live out our Kinder Than Necessary value and see it catch on with so many people,” shared Anndrea Boris, leader, Cisco Secure employee experience.

In Prague, Katerina Svrcinova, a leader for business operations, threat detection and response data science organized local team members to create specialized educational materials for Smiling Crocodile, a school that offers special education, physiotherapy, and psychological care.

“We were very impressed by the dedication of teachers and assistants! I was happy that I could help the organization with my colleagues. It was emotional and motivational. I would like to participate in these activities more often,” Svrcinova said.

At Nola’s Iris Garden in San Jose, team members weeded and gardened, tending to beautiful flowers and terrain.

Supporting Foodbanks Across North America

Cisconians also sorted food and prepared meals in their communities across the United States and Canada. “I love that Cisco supports us giving back to the community. I feel great joy in contributing my time and energy into making the world a better place. I loved organizing this event and am glad Cisco encourages us to do it,” shared Engineering Leader in Secure Analytics Roger Oliver. Oliver led a team at the Atlanta Community Foodbank in sorting 25,000 pounds of food.

“In participating in the Global Week of Giving, I am reminded that love is not simply an emotion, but an action.” – John Ruben, an XDR Architecture Success Program Manager, Security Customer Success

The experience deeply impacted John Ruben, an XDR architecture success program manager, security customer success. “In participating in the Global Week of Giving, I am reminded that love is not simply an emotion, but an action. It is a command, not an option. In this way, helping out the community should never be a choice, but a commitment. Serving at the Atlanta Community Foodbank I witnessed firsthand the power of collective effort, and I am inspired to continue championing such causes that enrich and uplift our society,” Ruben said.

Sydney Ryanczak, a software engineering leader in secure analytics who also volunteered at the Atlanta Community Foodbank said, “Knowing that we provided over 16,000 meals to seniors in our community made the experience very fulfilling.” For Corwin Guobadia, a security technical consulting engineer, the experience reminded him of a quotation by Civil Rights leader, Coretta Scott King: “The greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members.”

In Texas, Jaclyn Freeman, senior technical program manager, data science and engineering, led a team sorting food at the Central Texas Foodbank which serves 22 counties in Central Texas providing services for community members experiencing food insecurity.

“This was a great opportunity to meet some fellow Cisco Secure Austinites while leveraging our Time2Give hours to make a positive impact in our community. We provided 358 boxes of dry goods and 260 bags of produce which equates to 10,818 meals to our neighbors in need,” Freeman said.

Product Solution Architect Bernie Clairmont was part of a team that packed food that will supply over 12,000 meals for people in Oregon. “I had a great time volunteering at the Oregon Foodbank. I was amazed that in the time we were there the combined group of volunteers managed to pack over 14,000 pounds of food! It was awesome to meet some of the local Cisco family here in Oregon and make new friends in the process,” Clairmont said.

Year-round Employee Volunteerism

Global Week of Giving put community engagement front and center, both continuing and jumpstarting innovative volunteer initiatives powered by Time2Give. “I would love to see the “being kinder than necessary” spirit and connection spread into every week of the year,” Cutter said.

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Mary Kate Schmermund

Employer Brand Content Specialist

Cisco Secure