The AE Cares board is comprised of a few AE Business Solutions team members, but all employees are proud to contribute to the AE Cares mission through initiatives like twice-yearly "AE Cares Days."
In the late summer of 2020, when we started AE Cares, the idea was to build upon one of the core values of AE Business Solutions: Engage Locally, serve your community both inside and outside of AE. Little did we know the impact AE Cares would have on us and on our community.
We wanted to give back, but we wanted to give back in more ways than only writing a check or making a donation. The pandemic was raging, so there weren't many places we could serve.We knew caring and serving veterans was something important to us, but we weren't sure how, how we could make a difference? We began talking to our veteran employees and brainstorming ideas. Our support for veterans began simply, but powerfully. On Memorial Day, every Memorial Day, there are tens of thousands of gravestones across WI that need remembrance flags placed near the headstone. We jumped in and have been in the process of serving veterans in multiple ways throughout the year. On Memorial Days over the past few years, AE Cares volunteers have placed thousands, literally thousands of flags to help remember and honor those who gave their lives in support of our country.
In 2021, we along with much of the world, we watched the injustice of George Floyd's death. We instantly knew that racial equality was something we wanted to fight together for as AE Cares. We acknowledged that many of us, we were and are late to the fight, but we were reminded that even those who are late, the fight for racial equality needs more and more advocates, allies and friends. We didn't know where to start. We began learning and listening. We learned through past voices, current authors, community speakers, our friends, our colleagues and our community, and we agreed and committed to foster a culture of learning, advocacy and partnership. Our first partnership was with Maydm in Madison, and we're so excited to continue to partner with Maydm to help equip girls and youth of color in grades 6-12 with the technical skills to engage in and revolutionize the technology industry.
We also wanted to enable service opportunities for all the employees of AE Business Solutions, to serve anywhere and everywhere they desired. We created AE Cares Days and we provided each employee 2 days annually where they can each serve without being required to use PTO or personal weekends to give back. The employees of AE have served at retirement communities, at nature preservation and restoration sites, at food pantries and food banks, at churches, at community events, at holiday toy drives and so many other local, community service locations. There are 3 requirements: Recruit your fellow AE-ers and your friends to join you, take a picture if appropriate, and share an update and your picture within AE's Teams channel to update us on the impact serving within AE Cares had on you and those you served.
My hope: you'll join us at an AE Cares outing, you'll join an AE Cares committee, you'll consider a financial contribution to AE Cares, or you'll spur us on with stories of your own.
At AE Cares, we're just getting started and we'd love for you to join us.