How 115 Softchoice Employees Gave Back to a Costa Rican Community

At one point in our lives, we’ve heard someone utter the phrase – “It’s better to give, than to receive.”  Kathleen Simard, Softchoice Outbound Sales Rep in Atlanta recalls her mother saying this to her as a child. However, it wasn’t until her recent trip to Costa Rica when those words rang true for Kathleen and really came to life.

As one of 115 recipients of Softchoice’s President’s Club award, Kathleen ventured to the beautiful country of Costa Rica to celebrate with the company’s best of the best. And while the top performers in the organization were there to celebrate a year’s worth of accomplishments, they achieved something even greater in just one day in Costa Rica. In the spirit of Softchoice Cares, our employees took time to give back to the local community and assembled and presented 50 local school children with brand new bicycles, backpacks full of school items and new desks!

It was during the surprise presentation to the students, an amazed Kathleen Simard realized just how lucky she was to be a part of such a heart-warming event.

“When the kids entered the room, I could feel the energy and anticipation that was painted on their faces,” said Kathleen. “As their principal announced the surprise, I cried my eyes out as theirs grew wider with excitement when they saw the bicycles.”

Given the children’s limited means, their delight was not surprising. From kindergarten to grade 8, the kids learn in a two room school house, share two books amongst themselves, and may walk for more than two hours a day just to get to and from school. But even after the thrill of the day subsided, the children’s enthusiasm continued to grow long after Softchoice employees ventured home.

“We heard that the next Saturday was like a bike exhibit in the community’s main square. The kids were having fun showing off their new bikes and even enjoying a mini rally,” says Kathleen. “Their principal said they were ecstatic because they don’t have to walk long hours to school or pay for public transit anymore. They’ll definitely remember this surprise for many years to come.”

It’s safe to say that our P-Club winners will also have this memory etched in their minds for years to come.  

 

 

About Sharon Beattie

Sharon is the Charity Liaison on the employee-led, Softchoice Cares Board. Sharon is also a member of Softchoice's Business Transformation Team, where she leads change projects across the organization.