Doing Our Part to Help Fight Hunger: Volunteer Day at Stackla APAC

By Owen Fitzgerald - May 20, 2019
2 mins read time
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Each year at Stackla, we endeavor to participate in volunteering events around the world where every office can give back to the local community in some way.

This year, Stackla APAC once again decided to volunteer as a team with Foodbank, Australia’s largest hunger relief organization. The amazing crew at Foodbank provide over 20 million meals to 661 organizations each year, including charities and schools. They also impressively run their operations year-round through the work of volunteer teams like Stackla, which made us very proud to contribute our time to helping such a worthy cause.

The day kicked off at 8am at their warehouse in Sydney’s West, where the Stackla team waited with excitement to see which tasks we’d be assigned this year. Luke, our mentor and supervisor, provided us with a briefing of FoodBank: who they are, what they do and why they do it. When we learned that over 4 million Australians and their families suffer from food insecurity each year, the message really sunk in for each member of the Stackla team that our work today was going to have a direct impact on the lives of so many Australian families. From there on, we were beaming and ready to get to work!

Splitting into five teams, we grabbed our gloves, threw on our fluorescent safety jackets and entered the warehouse to find a MOUNTAIN of potatoes. Yes, potatoes — 500kg of them! As Luke told us, it’s the essentials in Foodbank kits — such as potatoes, pasta and bread — that go a long way towards keeping Australian families feed during the winter months. It’s staples like these that keep people’s bellies full.

Now you may be thinking a mundane task, such as packing bags of potatoes, wouldn’t motivate a team of office workers, but not us Stacklamites! Our goal was to pack as much food as possible and beat all the other volunteer groups who had tackled this task in Foodbank history.

With our goal set, we got to work. Our APAC Head of Sales, Gary (who we affectionately call “Gaz”), lead from the front by packing his potato bags single-handedly at lightning speed, while our Irish native Customer Success star, Eimear, went with the three-in-hand takedown. But it was when George, from our Tech team, suggested we align our efforts and have dedicated bag holders and dedicated bag stuffers working in synergy, that things really took off.

As the day went on, the pallets of potatoes kept coming and naturally we grew tired at times. Nevertheless, not one person reduced their efforts as we all knew we were potentially helping 65,000 Australians that month (27 percent of whom would be children).

At Stackla we pride ourselves on working as a unified team and achieving amazing results day in, day out. At 3pm when every potato was finally packed, we wondered how far our efforts had gotten us. The previous record holders, Salesforce, boasted an impressive number. As we reassembled in the workers’ lunch room, Luke came in with a brimming smile. “You’ve cracked the record — 9 tons of potatoes!” We were thrilled, exhausted and most of all proud; proud that we could contribute our time and effort as a team to a cause much greater than our own.

A huge thank you to Luke and the Foodbank team for having us once again. We can’t wait to come back again next year as the reigning hunger fighting champions.

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