The John Keells Group felicitated high performing volunteers contributing to CSR initiatives of 2017/18 at its annual Volunteer Recognition Day held on 21st June 2018 at Cinnamon Lakeside.
Staff volunteerism is at the heart of the John Keells Group’s community engagement strategy. Most projects carried out by John Keells Foundation (Foundation) – the CSR entity of the Group – function with the support of volunteers. The Group’s volunteer network enables employees to go beyond their day-to-day work and make a hands-on contribution to community and environment development while the volunteer leave policy facilitates the release of staff for CSR activities with minimum restraint. Volunteers vary from project champions, trainers and trained assistants to those who engage in skill-based volunteerism and administrative support.
During 2017/18, 840 staff volunteers engaged in projects undertaken by the Foundation recording 1398 volunteer instances accounting for 5411 hours, excluding CSR initiatives organized at a sector or business level.
Every year volunteers are recognized for their commitment and contribution with ‘Platinum’, ‘Gold’, ‘Silver’, ‘Bronze’ or `Merit’ ratings based on the Foundation’s Volunteer Rating Mechanism with the high performers being awarded at the annual Volunteer Recognition Day. Commenting on volunteerism at John Keells, Muditha Senarath-Yapa, Head of John Keells Research who champions the Foundation’s Science Promotion project and was a `gold’ recipient at the event, said, “As a volunteer, my greatest fulfilment was in observing children from rural areas learning to code a small robot to do simple tasks. It clearly shows that Sri Lanka is a country of very talented people. The day we learn to harness this potential is the day we change this country”.
The Volunteer Recognition Day 2018 was graced by Chairman and Directors of the John Keells Group. Speaking at the event, Mr. Susantha Ratnayake, Chairman, John Keells Holdings PLC (JKH) stated, “I take this opportunity to thank you profusely for the amazing passion and commitment that you continue to show. You are John Keells’ greatest ambassadors as the good work done by the Foundation and all staff volunteers continues to empower wider sections of society.”
The Foundation also took the opportunity to pay tribute at this gathering to Mr. Ratnayake for his personal commitment and leadership to CSR over the past 12 years as Chairman, JKH from which position he is due to retire in December 2018.