During the week of October 5, Mars Incorporated associates across the United States and Canada participated in the annual Mars Volunteer Program (MVP.) 10,000 associates at offices and factories across North America took the time to make a difference by volunteering in activities that benefit the local communities where Mars operates. In total, it is estimated that 30,000 volunteer hours was donated by Mars associates.
This initiative took place in cities large and small, from coast to coast, ranging from the metro centers of New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles to Westchester, PA; North Sioux City, South Dakota; and Nashville, Tennessee. Volunteer efforts focused primarily on youth enrichment, hunger relief, animal welfare and the environment - four areas that reflect the company's leadership in confectionery, food and petcare products and its growing health and nutrition business.
The Mars Volunteer Program Week (MVP Week) was inspired by the company's commitment to living its Five Principles: Quality, Responsibility, Mutuality, Efficiency and Freedom.
"MVP Week really is a demonstration of our commitment to our principles," said Mark Broadhurst, Director, Corporate Affairs & State Public Policy. "Mars is unique; our principles guide our actions and how we operate every day.”
Throughout the week, Mars associates took time out of their work day to volunteer at local animal rescue organizations, help local group homes with fall clean-ups, and participate in youth mentoring programs. For those unable to participate in off-site activities, many locations will be running on-site food drives and other donation programs.
- Associates at Mars Symbioscience volunteered at the Washington Animal Rescue League.
- In Newmarket, Ontario, associates helped two local group homes with a fall clean-up, as well as running an in-office food drive.
- Mars Horsecare associates assisted at the Wayne County Humane Society with an Adopt-an-Animal drive, and participated in Change Through Chance, a youth mentoring and therapeutic riding program.
- In Franklin, TN, Mars Petcare partnered with 16 local area shelters for an on-site pet adoption drive. The event featured up to 100 local dogs and cats available for adoption and a variety of activities that will raise money for the PEDIGREE Foundation.
- In Albany, GA, Mars Snackfood associates be served meals and assisted with homework assistance at the Jefferson Street Boys & Girls Club and the Jane Wilson Boys & Girls Club.
- Wrigley associates mulched trees and cleaned litter at city parks, working with Greater Chicago Food Depository to donate food, repackaged food and distributed fresh produce in the community, taught at a local Junior Achievement program and volunteered at the Erie Neighborhood House Paint facilities.
- Mars Food US associates assisted the Los Angeles Regional food bank with a food sorting project. Associates also partnered with the Back To Natives organization to restore Coastal Sage Scrub to 3.5 acres of habitat in Irvine, Ca. They helped ensure that native species are protected while non-native species are removed efficiently, and with minimal human impact to the site.