(CMR) The Cayman Islands Government’s (CIG) Civil Service announced that civil servants, through the CIG Cares Community Support Program, donated a little over $23,000 to support local charity Cayman’s ARK Foundation (Acts of Random Kindness) last year.
The CIG Cares Programme was created to allow civil servants and Members of Parliament to opt-in to support various charities through payroll deductions. Participants have the option to make monthly deductions, one-time lump sum contributions, or a combination of both.
Chief Officer in the Portfolio of the Civil Service Gloria McField stated that civil servants should be proud of their contributions and positive impact within our local community.
“It is inspiring that our employees continue to give year after year to local charities. This is one of the ways in which we as public servants are fulfilling our common purpose of making lives better,” she said.
In commenting on the donation, Director of Cayman’s ARK Foundation Tara Nielsen remarked, “We are very grateful to receive the donations which will directly impact the community. We have many programs that touch many lives in a myriad of ways, including through housing, food, utilities, and education. We are so thankful to all of the civil servants who chose to help us to help those who need it most.”
ARK has been working for many years to provide help and emergency relief aimed at alleviating immediate suffering. This includes hunger, housing, utilities, and medical intervention programs. ARK also runs a literacy education program MER (Mentor-Educate-Reinforce), a housing (CASA) renovation program, and building of ‘Tiny Homes' that are designed to break the cycle of poverty over the long term, thus providing sustainable solutions to suffering and need.
“Employee giving programs are an opportunity for us to engage in small acts of kindness that collectively contribute to major change and impact in the community. It also helps improve workplace culture, increases employee engagement, and is aligned with our Civil Service purpose to make lives better,” said Jennifer Ahearn, Chief Officer Ministry of Sustainability and Climate Resiliency and co-creator of the CIG Cares Programme.
Since the inception of the CIG Cares Programme in July 2020, beneficiaries have included Meals on Wheels, Jasmine (formerly Cayman Hospice Care), Cayman Islands Cancer Society, and the Needs Assessment Unit’s food voucher program.
CIG Cares complements the Cayman Islands Government’s annual DG’s 5K Challenge, which pairs athleticism and altruism and has grown to become one of the largest events of its kind within the Cayman Islands. Since its establishment in 2014, the DG’s 5K has raised close to half a million dollars and benefitted many charities.