United Way’s success is due to the dedication of the people of Berks County and to the people and organizations who adopt the LIVE UNITED spirit throughout the entire year. Alcon Research, Ltd. Is one of those organizations.
Alcon’s United Way Committee consists of 20 people who are dedicated to spreading the United Way message and making the community a better place. This is not only evident through their successful United Way campaign, their participation in UWBC’s Loaned Campaign Specialist program and The Big Cheese, or with their busy volunteer calendar, which consists of at least one opportunity each quarter, but also through their Community Partnership Days event.
Community Partnership Days is a 3-day volunteer event, hosted by Alcon, where the employees can share the spirit beyond the Alcon walls. This event has grown since its inception seven years ago. During three days each April, Alcon employees have the opportunity to participate in over 20 volunteer projects. The opportunities vary in time and location to provide opportunities for all 180 participants to make a difference in their community. The opportunities range from working with United Way Partner Agencies, such as The American Red Cross, Safe Berks, and Opportunity House, to other businesses and non-profits who are in need. Allison Hayick, an Alcon Committee member for over 20 years, shared, “I think  is the biggest Partnership Days we have ever had.” Hayick also shared the importance of hosting this opportunity for the Alcon employees, “It is a great way to get people out in the community and see the needs in Berks County.” She also said, ”We have had Partnership Days volunteers join the United Way committee in order to be able to give back even more.”
Employees are grateful to work for a company that provides such a unique opportunity to their employees. Amy Bowman, United Way volunteer and Alcon employee of over 18 years, shared she loves this opportunity because, ”I love to help out the community and meet new people who I work with.”
Marcia Longenecker, an Alcon employee of 30 years and a UW Committee member for 3 years, is the lead volunteer for the American Red Cross clean up opportunity. She shared she participates in Community Partnership Days because, ”I have always given to the United Way, but I wanted to do more.” She continued, “so I decided to join the Committee.” The reason she said she gives back is because, “I have a blessed life and I want to give back in any way that I can.”
Alcon is continually sharing the LIVE UNITED spirit, both internally and throughout the community, and they plan to continue their success by attending the upcoming Campaign Planning Workshops to help them plan their 2018 company campaign and to continue spreading the United Way message.