At Link UP, we’ve been very inspired to learn about the journey of Disha Iyer, Senior Creative Strategist at Amazon UK and repeat Link UP corporate employee volunteer.
Disha participated in two Link UP Corporate Flash Consulting events as an Amazon employee and supported Funpact, a London based parenting charity, as a Skilled Volunteer on a longer-term Link UP project.
Her story demonstrates the myriad benefits of Skilled Volunteering engagements for employees in corporate environments.
Disha tells us below how powerful it has been to carry on her Link UP journey with an individual Skilled Volunteering project in which she utilised her extensive strategy and marketing expertise to craft a social media strategy to help the charity better communicate with potential funders.
“As a result of the engagements with Link UP London and Funpact, I was able to contribute to community, feel more purposeful, and develop my personal interests. It also helped me to increase my personal networks.” Corporate Skilled Volunteer Disha Iyer
In conversation with Disha
Why did you decide to participate in the initial Link UP London Flash Consulting event at Amazon in July 2023? What was it about the opportunity that captured your attention?
When the Link UP London Social Impact Solutions Flash Consulting event was advertised within Amazon, I thought it was a great opportunity to work with people making a real difference in the community. It was so conveniently set up as well, occurring as a contained, two-hour session at our office during the workday.
What other types of volunteering have you participated in previously through work? Was the corporate skilled volunteering Flash Consulting opportunity different and if yes, how?
I’ve participated in Refugee Kit packing events through work previously. Flash Consulting was unique in that it gave me an opportunity to use my professional skills to make a positive impact in the community. This was incredibly rewarding.
You were one of a handful of Amazon volunteers to return for the second Flash Consulting engagement at Amazon in September. What convinced you to return for another session?
The first Flash Consulting session was well run, and I was able to make the time again in my work schedule. I will likely participate again in the future when I can.
Why did you decide to engage with a Link UP London individual skilled volunteering project following your participation in the two Flash Consulting sessions?
After the first Flash Consulting, I enquired about any longer-term project opportunities and signed up for a project. I thought it would be great to dig a little deeper into a charity’s core problems and provide solutions. I rarely get to work with this type of organisation, so it was rewarding from a professional development perspective as well.
What do you feel has been the greatest achievement of your time volunteering with the charitable organisation Funpact through Link UP London?
The most important thing for me has been the sense of personal satisfaction from volunteering using my professional skill set. I’m looking forward to keeping in touch with Funpact and Link UP to continue to understand the longer-term impact of my contributions.
What did you learn about yourself and your professional skills through the Link UP corporate skilled volunteering opportunities?
I rediscovered how much I enjoy tackling diverse problems and challenges, especially the challenge of defining and achieving organisational goals while working with fewer resources.
In general, do you feel corporate skilled volunteering is a valuable way for companies to support their employees?
I do feel skilled volunteering helps corporate employees rediscover the utility of their skillset and empowers them to find more meaning in their work.
Final reflections from Funpact & Disha
“I honestly can’t put into words how amazing this skilled volunteering experience has been. I have gone from not having a clue and feeling very overwhelmed to now understanding how to make social media work for us. The amount of work that Disha put into supporting us blew my MIND. It helped me build my confidence in this whole area and now we have tools to action what we discussed.” – Charity partner Funpact
“This was a great opportunity to flex my creative muscles in a new arena and experience a different kind of challenge.” – Corporate Skilled Volunteer Disha Iyer
Learn more about Link UP London’s work with corporate clients on our website and join our Social Impact Solutions Corporate Skilled Volunteering newsletter here