What a difference a day makes: The impact of Deloitte

A strong supporter of Family Services, Deloitte’s relationship began with a simple day in 2007: Deloitte Impact Day, when a group of employees from Deloitte’s Vancouver office spent the day at Directions Youth Services Centre. They cooked, made sandwiches and served lunch to the homeless youth and the staff. The day includes a tour of the facility and an orientation on the programs and services provided. It’s called Impact Day for a reason. The focus of this annual volunteer day for Deloitte staff is about making a difference in the communities in which they work. The first Deloitte Impact Day spent at Directions in 2007 also had an impact on the staff who volunteered – and that’s where it all began.

Joanne Hausch, a partner at Deloitte, put forth the initial proposal to include Directions in Deloitte Vancouver’s Impact Day. She was aware of Directions through her volunteer work with Street Meals, a program that helps street entrenched and at risk youth throughout the cycle, when they’re on the street, dealing with addictions, in transition and even returning to work as peer counsellors. Joanne led the team of volunteers on that first Impact Day. “It was a very eye opening experience for the staff who participated, and they came away wanting to be more engaged with Directions and with Family Services,” says Joanne. Deloitte Vancouver has indeed become more engaged, in a number of ways. Andrew Medd, a Deloitte consultant, served on the Family Services Board for 5 years, before retiring this past AGM (2013). He had recently moved from Ontario and was looking for ways to become involved in the community. Initially serving on the governance and nominating committee, Andrew eventually became vice chair of the Board, and a member of the fund development committee.

“It’s nice to be able to lend my expertise and skills in ways that are very different from the work I do on a day to day basis. The work of the Agency is so important, it’s gratifying to be involved with an organization that makes such a difference,” adds Andrew. “Community involvement is a given when you work for Deloitte. The firm sees Family Services as an important community organization in Vancouver, so it’s a natural fit that we should have a strong Board presence.”

Joanne Hausch also joined the Family Services Board in 2009. Having worked closely with Directions through Street Meals and the annual Impact Day events, she was interested in being involved with Family Services at a policy level. She is now Chair of the Board.

When plans were underway for the Fall Luncheon, Deloitte stepped forward as Presenting Sponsor, with a substantial financial contribution, and they have remained as Founding Sponsor for the past two years. “The opportunity to support Family Services was a great fit for Deloitte” says Joanne. “As a firm, we are committed to our communities and Family Services of Greater Vancouver is a respected agency that is providing valuable services in our local community. Paul Fletcher, our managing partner, was immediately convinced of the value of further supporting Family Services. Volunteer days, lending expertise at the leadership level, making financial contributions – Deloitte’s involvement with Family Services is testament to a firm whose people go the extra mile to support the communities in which they live and work. Now that’s what you call having an impact!