CABOT, Vt., Aug. 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Following a successful Phase One launch of Reward Volunteers earlier this year, Cabot Creamery - the New England and upstate New York dairy farm family-owned cooperative best known as "The Maker's of the World's Best Cheddar" - has expanded and re-launched Reward Volunteers 2.0. The program, a free computer widget and easy-to-use mobile app for iPhone, enables individuals and organizations to track the time they spend volunteering in their communities. Volunteers can use either the app or the widget to earn chances for rewards for their volunteer efforts, and inspire friends on Facebook to do the same.
"The participation we received earlier this year in Phase One of Reward Volunteers proved the program was long over due among volunteers everywhere," says Cabot Director of Marketing & Integrated Services, Jen Neary. "From our Phase One launch on February 14 through the culmination on July 7 (The International Day of Cooperatives), volunteers from 46 states logged more than 44,000 hours at more than 800 organizations. Their efforts made a difference in the lives of countless individuals and communities, and inspired many of their Facebook friends to get involved. By the end of the first phase, we had nearly 100 prizewinners, who were awarded cash, vacations, and other great prizes. We enhanced what we started and trust Reward Volunteers 2.0 will take our recognition of the individual volunteers and the organizations they serve to the next level."
New to Phase Two, participants can now give the gift of time for someone they care about by sending a special Reward Volunteers 2.0 greeting card. The recipient will receive an email letting them know a friend or loved one has volunteered in their honor.
"Reward Volunteers is easy and self-explanatory to use," Neary said. "Participants download the Reward Volunteers iPhone app or use the web widget to log activity and encourage friends to get involved by sharing on Facebook or via email. Phase Two also allows participants to take pictures using the iPhone app and share them on Facebook. The more hours users log for the organizations of their choice, the more Reach points they'll earn, which equals more opportunities for them and the organizations they serve to win cash and prizes. They can also earn Reach points by sharing their activity on Facebook or via email. The more 'likes' and comments their posts receive, the more Reach points they earn."
Prizes are awarded each month, from September through December, with Grand Prizes being awarded in January. From September through December, the list of valuable prizes include: cash for individuals and organizations; Liberty Hill Farm vacations; King Arthur Flour gift cards; National Cooperative Grocers Association gift cards; Cabot Cheddar Gift Baskets; and Farm Family Gift Baskets. Grand Prize Winners will receive super-sized Cabot Farm Family Gift Baskets, Vermont Ski Passes, and fabulous vacation packages to Liberty Hill Farm, Couture Farm, Smugglers Notch, and Escobar's Inn.
The first phase of Reward Volunteers also featured some extraordinary prizes. One of the Grand Prize recipients was Dr. Paula Fives-Taylor, a former nun, science teacher, and professor at the University of Vermont Medical School, who was rewarded with the trip of a lifetime aboard the Cabot Community Celebrity Alaskan Cruise. Originally from Brooklyn but now residing in South Burlington, Vermont, Paula has been dedicating most of her energy and talent to the Vermont Visiting Nurse Association since retiring from UVM four years ago. She spends her days with hospice patients, staying by their side and caring for them until the end, ensuring their comfort as much as she's able. "I always prefer to provide hospice care in a patient's home," says Paula. "I'm thrilled to be recognized for my volunteer efforts but I never sought the limelight for it. Who knew that my time would inspire others?"
ABOUT CABOT CREAMERY COOPERATIVE Cabot Creamery Cooperative has been in continuous operation in Vermont since 1919, and we make a full line of cheeses, yogurt, sour cream, cottage cheese, and butter. Best known as makers of "The World's Best Cheddar," Cabot is owned by 1200 dairy farm families located throughout New England and upstate New York. For additional information on Cabot Creamery, visit: www.cabotcheese.coop