By Elise Marley-Wallace, Allianz Public Relations and Social Media Manager
In December 2016, more than 20 Allianz Australia employees volunteered over 200 hours to support not-for-profit humanitarian organisation, Settlement Services International (SSI), as part of Allianz’s community outreach program.
Allianz volunteers serving food at SSI Community Kitchen.
Allianz employee Alexandra Ryan, who has been with Allianz since 2013, was among those to volunteer her time to join SSI for a Community Kitchen lunch at the Auburn Centre for the Community.
"I am proud of the partnership that Allianz has with SSI, so when I had the chance to spend my community day at the Auburn Centre for the Community, I saw it as an opportunity to better understand the partnership and the impact it is having on the community," Ms Ryan said.
Joined by a team of Allianz employees, Ms Ryan spent the day working in the kitchen and setting up the community lunch room, teaching and playing sports, laying pavers for the giant chess board and building new wooden garden beds for the Friendship garden.
Allianz staff volunteers laying a garden bed at the Friendship Garden.
The team had the opportunity to meet local refugees and asylum seekers and hear their stories including the daily challenges and hardships they faced before moving to Australia.
"I really enjoyed meeting the local people and hearing about the lives they led before they relocated to Australia - I cannot believe the adversity that so many of these people have faced," Ms Ryan said.
"Australia is a lucky country and sometimes we take for granted the freedom that we are afforded. I was so pleased to be able to share in the day and to support those who have come to this amazing country searching for a better life for themselves and their families."
"I feel very strongly about the important role Australia can play in today’s world. I am very proud of Allianz’s partnership with SSI and how we are transforming the lives of so many people."
Allianz staff members preparing to serve food to refugees and people seeking asylum.
In early 2016, Allianz partnered with SSI to establish Allianz’s Sustainable Employment Program, which provides new career opportunities and support for refugees and migrants who have settled in Australia.
By August 2016, the partnership had expanded to include sponsoring the Allianz and SSI Education Scholarships as well sponsoring a number of SSI’s community kitchen lunches.
Allianz has generously sponsored the costs of three SSI Community Kitchen events in 2016.