Back in July, our Collaboration Heroes at Axway Ireland took part in a volunteering day to support our community and to help paint and refurbish a prefab for the Aisling project. The Aisling project is an after-school intervention for children and young people in need. The goal is to tackle educational and social disadvantage and encourage improved school participation and completion by targeting children and young people who are “at-risk” of early school leaving. Aisling Project operates five after-school centers across Ballymun, working with over 135 children and young people from the ages of 7 to 16+ years.
50+ Axwegians volunteered and gave 100% to deliver a successful project which included painting five rooms, coordination and assembling nine pieces of Ikea furniture, as well as creating a brilliant new space for the children. We even managed to provide some new toys and games for the project too. And all done in one day: prepare, paint, assemble and clean up after our job was done.
The Aisling Project—a great cause
The first collaboration was between Orla, Miriam, Volunteer Ireland and The Aisling Project.
Orla McCarron and Miriam Sanchez had visited one of the centers which are part of the Aisling Project, met the center manager and some of the children. They heard about the challenges faced by the children at home and how the organization ensures they have a safe space to do their school homework with support, are given dinner and are encouraged to have a future beyond their circumstances.
They discussed how Axway could help with a volunteer day and make a difference. Once back to the office, Miriam and Orla were so fired up and convinced that volunteering and helping The Aisling Project should be our 2019 summer event. They convinced Aidan, the Axway Ireland manager, for support and their colleagues that this would be good to give back to the community and make a difference—a great experience for the entire team in Ireland.
Solving challenges in collaboration
When we all arrived at the Aisling Project, teams were allocated to their different rooms and started to figure out what paints to use, which tools and equipment they would need, how to prepare properly the space for the painting and how to distribute work amongst the team members. Some of our Collaboration Heroes team members were really experienced in this area.
Others, however, needed guidance which we received from Volunteer Ireland. (Volunteer Ireland is the national volunteer development organization and a support body for all local Volunteer Centers and Volunteering Information Services in Ireland.) Volunteer Ireland was helpful and happy to work with us on any challenges we faced throughout the whole day.
Since the main challenges were time and experience, we paired people less experienced in renovation with more experienced people, helping upskill and share knowledge, enthusiasm and had the general drive to do something great. That pushed people to do their best in the time we had with everyone working hard to get a great result.
Any challenges we encountered were resolved with good communication between team leads and the organizers from Volunteer Ireland, as well as good communication and collaboration between all the team members too.
If you had to do it again, what would you do differently?
Wear sun cream! Several furniture builders worked outside, what they presumed was cloud cover, but had a warm glow about them later that evening reminding us of the Baz Luhrmann song “Everybody’s free (to wear Sun Screen)”
Overall, we would say that if we had to do it again, we would happily do it the same way again!
We would like a special mention to our amazing team leads on the day Robert Conan Mariya Barova Ryan Connolly Pascal Landshoft Joshua Longton who did a fantastic job cracking the whip and ensuring we all worked hard and demonstrated how good collaboration and teamwork can make all the difference on the day.
READ MORE: Axway helps Summer of Dreams along the way!
Celebrating success in collaboration
While everyone was tired after the day’s physical work, there was a great buzz and a feeling of great achievement with people sitting with their teams and other teams discussing what they had achieved that day. It was also great to show the photos to our families on the volunteer day.
At the end of the day, seeing the excellent results and realizing what a difference a day can make and realizing the difference the children from the Aisling Project would see when they walked in the door on a Monday morning, made it all worthwhile. We could imagine the smiles on their faces, knowing we made a difference to the community.
READ MORE: Axway Family Day in Paris.
Spending a whole day in a different work environment with our work colleagues trying to figure out ways of solving problems that we wouldn’t normally encounter in our day to day working lives helped us get to know each other even better than before and strengthened us as a team. This helps us achieve the goal of the day and as a result, showed us how collaborating and working together #bettertogether at Axway can help solve many problems and achieve many goals.
Discover more BetterTogether in work and at Axway in technology.