Meet Blue Crew Volunteer Carol Dunleavy
Carol Dunleavy, Senior employee relations specialist
Years at Independence Blue Cross: 4
How did you become a Blue Crew volunteer?
A few months after I joined Independence, I joined the Blue Crew efforts. I knew when I interviewed that [the company’s] community involvement and their support of their associates’ external involvement in the community was very strong. It was one of the reasons I wanted to work for Independence.
What organizations and/or service projects do you support with the Blue Crew?
Within Independence, I support the United Way campaign as an ambassador and as a Day of Caring volunteer. I am a Red Cross ambassador and donor. I volunteer at Ronald McDonald House, St. John’s Hospice, and MANNA. I also volunteer for Fred’s Footsteps, Back on My Feet, and Cradles to Crayons.
Outside of Independence, I am very involved with my community. For the past ten years I’ve been co-chair of our parish carnival, which runs five days in June every year. It’s a huge undertaking — it helps raise money to keep our school and parish independent and is open to all children and families.
I was past President of the Holy Cross Home and School Association for seven years, where I helped coordinate efforts on various projects with students and families to help improve technology within the school and…bring in guest speakers to help parents deal with current issues like bullying, substance abuse, and dealing with teenage crisis situations.
I was a founding member of the Bonner & Prendie Home and School Association and served on the board for four years. Our efforts helped sustain the financial stability of the school, increased the technology advances for the students, and helped increase our enrollment. Many of our projects involved raising money for scholarships so students who have a financial hardship and cannot afford to pay the entire tuition may have some assistance in doing so.
This past year in particular, I had the unbelievable opportunity personally to be part of the 2015 World Meeting of Families and worked for five days during the event as a volunteer captain and volunteer. I was able to meet so many interesting and caring individuals from around the world through this effort.
How do you think the Blue Crew impacts the corporate culture at Independence?
I strongly believe many associates come to Independence not just for the career opportunity, but because they want to be part of the community involvement and it helps with allowing associates to feel that they can give back as an associate and as an individual.
What motivates you to donate so many volunteer hours?
There isn’t just one thing that motivates me — there are many. As a child my parents didn’t have much, but they always gave their time to my brothers and me and our community. You can’t always give money, but you can always give your time. It doesn’t cost a thing to give your time.
For me personally, most of my volunteer efforts really touch back to something in my life — for example, I donate and am an ambassador for the American Red Cross because my parents both needed blood when they were battling cancer; I know so many who have benefited from the efforts of the United Way and their organizations; and feeding the homeless and less fortunate at St. John’s Hospice makes you appreciate what you do have.
Is there a particular volunteer project or achievement you are most proud of?
I’m proud of any little accomplishment. Our effort to buy books for the [school] library, or equip a learning center with computers so students have exposure to technology, or when your efforts allow a principal to tell a family they can afford to send their child to the school because they will receive some small assistance in paying the tuition — that is gratifying.
When you aren’t at work or volunteering, how do you like to spend your free time?
In my spare time, I like to read and do some crafts, and most importantly, do things with my two sons and husband, and if I’m really lucky, spend time with friends!
Our Independence Blue Cross (Independence) Corporate Volunteer Program — the Blue Crew — celebrates its 15th anniversary in 2016. Collectively, our Blue Crew volunteers donated more than 7,900 community service hours in 2015. In this series, we’re profiling our Blue Crew volunteers with the most individual service hours. Know an organization or a local event that could use some enthusiastic volunteers? Contact the Blue Crew.