SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Sojern, the world's leading data-driven traveler engagement platform, today announced its company-wide charitable giving initiative to promote sustainability at the global and local levels. From its founding, employees were given time off to volunteer with charities that mattered to them, and this mindset has been woven into the ethos of the company. For instance, each employee is given forty hours off per year to volunteer with non-profits of their choice. In the past year alone, Sojern's employees across the world have contributed to renowned organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, Salvation Army, and the San Francisco Food Bank.
With team members spread out in offices across the United States and Europe, Sojern's management team wanted to put a framework in place to encourage and support its employees to contribute and to maximize their impact. Sojern assigned a task force made up of one representative from each office to form the Sojern Gives Back Board. Sojern Gives Back, or SGB, promotes sustainability across three areas of impact: Social, Environmental, and Economic.
"Our team has been passionate about giving back to their communities, and they've been active about finding opportunities to do so, but we wanted to do more, and we wanted to drive more lasting results," said Mark Rabe, CEO at Sojern. "We needed to take the program one step further by creating a structure to support the team in giving, and to identify a few select charitable giving partners aligned with our mission."
With that idea in mind, Sojern partnered with READ Global, an organization that hopes to alleviate global poverty through education. Established in 1991, READ Global was started with the idea of educating a rural village by building a local library. It has since evolved into 69 READ Centers and 108 sustaining enterprises in Bhutan, India and Nepal, helping 199 villages and 2 million rural villagers. Each READ Center has programs aimed at improving reading skills, developing job skills, finding critical health information, and getting access to programs in early childhood development and women's empowerment. READ Global also focused on community ownership and enterprise, pioneering a model that ensures each Center is self-sustainable.
"When we were looking for our first partner for Sojern Gives Back, READ Global stood out for its proven model of community sustainability. The partnership has enabled our team to contribute at a company, regional, and individual level that creates a lasting impact," said Maly Ly, Sojern's VP of Marketing and SGB's Board Chair.
As a company, Sojern will leverage its media and technology expertise to drive awareness of READ Global programs. Sojern's regional teams will participate in fundraising efforts for READ, contribute their skills to READ infrastructure projects, and travel on-site to help support READ centers.
Sojern Gives Back will be adding on two additional key partners in 2014. To find out more about the program, please visit Sojern Gives Back.
Headquartered in San Francisco with key offices in New York, Omaha and London, Sojern is the world's leading data-driven traveler engagement platform that delivers the most efficient marketing, distribution, monetization and insight solutions at scale. Since 2007, the company has helped top travel brands like American Airlines, American Express, Avis|Budget Group, Choice, Enterprise, Hertz, Hilton, Hyatt, IHG, Las Vegas Tourism, Microsoft, Samsonite, Starwood, United, and US Airways to more efficiently and meaningfully engage with travelers to drive conversions, loyalty and monetization.
For more information, please visit www.sojern.com.
About READ Global
READ (Rural Education and Development) Global partners with rural villages to establish community library and resource centers (READ Centers) as vehicles for social and economic transformation. The organization works in communities where literacy rates are often less than 50%, and most people live below the poverty line. Centers are owned and operated by the local community, and offer training programs to people of all ages and backgrounds in the areas of education, economic empowerment, technology, and women's empowerment. With each Center, READ also seeds a for-profit "sustaining enterprise" — a small business that generates income to fund the ongoing costs of the Center, while providing the community with much-needed services, resources and local jobs.
For more information, visit www.readglobal.org.