Many of us have heard the old saying, “It’s better to give than to receive.” Whether it is around a holiday when gifts are exchanged or during birthdays, it’s a bit of conventional wisdom often shared between loved ones.
It turns out that when it comes to employees who give back to the community, there is more than a kernel of truth here.
Studies show employees who volunteer report lower stress levels and feel a deeper sense of purpose — and the benefits don’t stop there. By helping employees stay active, volunteering may improve physical well-being.
Simply put, the evidence shows doing good for others is good for you.
These are some of the reasons employees with UnitedHealthcare Medicare & Retirement in Virginia declared May a “Month of Service.” These employees planned volunteer opportunities across the Commonwealth, each benefiting local seniors.
For example, volunteers in Richmond packed boxes at Feed More, which prepares food for those in need. The meals were then delivered to seniors recently discharged from the hospital. In Alexandria, volunteers laced up their tennis shoes and hit the road, delivering healthful meals to seniors in their homes through the Meals on Wheels program.
In Virginia, UnitedHealthcare serves more than 1 million members, including more than 263,000 Medicare beneficiaries.
“It’s incredible to see the positive impact our employees are having through the Month of Service,” said Caroline Anderson, executive director, UnitedHealthcare Medicare & Retirement in Virginia. “Their service is helping address serious challenges like food insecurity and touches on the heart of our mission to help people live healthier lives.”
Food insecurity for an aging population is a serious challenge across the country. The America’s Health Rankings 2019 Senior Report from the United Health Foundation found that in Virginia 11.4 percent of seniors faced the threat of food insecurity.
Increasingly, there is recognition that social, emotional and environmental conditions like access to food, known as social determinants of health (SDOH), play an important role in our overall health and well-being.
UnitedHealthcare is focused on redefining health access and addressing the social determinants through investments, innovation and volunteerism.
As the Month of Service in Virginia shows, that starts with our core values like compassion and walking a mile in the shoes of those we serve. Volunteering is one important way UnitedHealthcare employees are walking-the-walk of these values and turning commonplace wisdom like “it’s better to give than to receive” into positive change for the communities in which they live and work.