“This was a great volunteer event. My co-workers and I that volunteered are still talking about how much fun we had. I am looking forward to participating again.”
This was just one of the reactions of the almost 170 volunteers who took time out of their work day on January 18th, to participate in the Story Pirates’ Story Love volunteer project as part of Comcast NBCUnites Launch Week. NBCUniversal employees were truly excited to read children’s original stories and write positive notes of encouragement back to them.
Taking place at 30 Rock in New York and on the Universal Lot in Los Angeles, volunteers gathered for an hour and paired up to read delightful short stories written by local elementary school children. They then whipped out their pens to craft notes that highlighted what they loved about the young writer’s story, and to encourage them to keep writing.
The project had special meaning to Comcast NBCUniversal employees in creative roles. “Being a writer myself, I would have loved this kind of thoughtful feedback when I was in grade school, so I’d love to do more,” remarked one volunteer.
One of the focus areas of Comcast NBCUnites—the company’s new volunteer initiative and social impact program—is to empower the next generation of storytellers. The company’s partnership with Story Pirates Changemakers is a collaboration that brings this vision to life, and in a way that gives Comcast NBCUniversal employees a vital role to play.
As part of a week of events celebrating the launch of Comcast NBCUnites, the Story Love volunteer project was created by Story Pirates Changemakers, a nonprofit organization founded in 2004 to celebrate the words, ideas, and stories of young people. Story Pirates is one of 15 nonprofit organizations partnering with Comcast NBCUnites across six locations: Englewood Cliffs, London, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and Stamford.
In total, the volunteers in both cities completed over 300 stories, including 100 stories in New York, a number that represents an entire classroom of children at Brighter Choice Community School in Brooklyn. The positive impact on the young writers is impossible to calculate, but one thing that stood out clearly for employee volunteers was the way it made them feel. As one volunteer put it, “This was such an awesome event. The activity felt very impactful. I loved reading the stories and meeting employees I wouldn’t run into otherwise.”