Ever since we emerged as a tech company in Transylvania, we have been paying equal attention to building products that have a meaningful impact, as well as developing our surrounding local communities with actions that go far beyond any technology innovation – like empathy and commitment.
We knew that for technology to make an impact, we first must address the more important, yet overlooked issue.
For example, we could not just gift the kids in the rural areas with laptops and tablets if they didn’t have any electricity, heat or even food.
And because of that, we wished to be more involved and to actively do something.
We hardly ever had a clear strategy of what the industry calls CSR. Most of the causes we’ve raised awareness about and the people we’ve helped have happened without even planning them in advance. We saw a need for it, and we acted upon it.
No calendar, no procedures and no corporate silo to pass on budgets for simply doing good.
We had a common goal – to give as much as we could to the ones less fortunate than us.
Getting all the rebels involved was the easiest part. The hard part came when we had to choose from different social causes. But it was the kind of challenge that we would’ve gladly taken on infinite times.
In fact, we promised ourselves we would carry on with these projects and initiatives all year long.
Being exposed to the aching community, to so many groups of people and even animals in need of help, we didn’t just wish to help one cause, only because it’s Christmas, Thanksgiving or whatever specific day when, suddenly, people remember that there is kindness within themselves.
We didn’t need a reason to help, but a means through which we can become instinctively willing, able and inclined to do so – to commit to more random acts of kindness.
Here’s how we decided to do good in 2021. 💕
We built something 🧱
In mid 2021, we planned our first teambuilding, ever since the entire pandemic hit. We were more than pleased and excited about it. Almost 80 rebels were onboard and ready to go to a retreat in the rural area of Bihor, Romania.
Besides the excitement of seeing each other again, face to face, after so many months that we already lost count, we also had a mission. For 2 days straight, we were #rebelswithacause, building playgrounds for the kids in three rural areas of Bihor and painting the walls from their schools, adding a little touch of colorful rebellion to them.
We got the chance to meet the children in person, and the surprise came, ironically or not, from them, even though we bought presents for each and one of them. They put on traditional dance choreography and did a nice little show for us which felt like a flash mob, right when we were about to leave the place.
Speaking with our team members afterward, everyone seemed to have enjoyed this. It was a unique experience, but different in an effective way since we broke the pattern of a usual and traditional teambuilding getaway.
- Renovate two classrooms ✅
- Build three playgrounds ✅
- Enjoy a delightful traditional dance ✅
- Build a stronger rebel community ✅
A yard sale, but give it another meaning 🏠
The story might go on to an unusual way of our giving philosophy.
Also happening this year, we had 3 different initiatives which had a primary scope to help the community around us.
This time was a family from Belis, Romania.
Organizing a yard sale, in both our offices from Oradea and Cluj, all the rebels had the responsibility to bring something for sale. It did not matter what as long as it was still usable in a good condition or… edible. 😅
- Help the rebels declutter and recycle by selling the things they do not use ✅
- Eat delicious food cooked by our colleagues and their moms that we love for gifting us food all the time ✅
- Raise 3.500 RON ✅
- Help a family in need by donating the amount of money raised from the yard sale ✅
The annual shoe box project 🎅🏻
With everyone running like crazy to buy the perfect Christmas present for their family, friends, and loved ones, in December we wanted to stop the run for a minute and think about what we can do to be of use.
We stopped and thought about all the children who need us the most, given the season.
Just like last year, we partnered with CERT and created 72 shoe boxes filled with goodies for kids in rural areas around Cluj, Transylvania.
So, we embraced the mission again, a different one, but kind of the same, I might say – being Santa for one day.
Everyone got enrolled, taking on the responsibility of finding the best gifts for the kids. It was not hard because we had everything prepared. We knew the cause we were going to help and the kids we were going to surprise with. We even had their names, ages and locations written on our personal notes.
Everything turned out to be so satisfying. At the end of it, our hearts were full, and their Christmas tree was full of hope, joy, and excitement that Santa really came this year.
- Get creative buying gifts for the kids ✅
- Ship 72 gift boxes ✅
- Put a smile on the little one’s faces, being Santa for a day ✅
The charity auctions 💰
I left the most amazing and inspiring story at the end of this article. And I hope it ends up inspiring you just as it inspired me.
How often have you heard about tech companies organizing charity auctions?
If you are like me, never. Until now.
The number of people involved in this project was beyond our expectations and our rebels utterly amazed us. We have had such a variety of products, some of them can even be called a must have in your house. And I am referring here to home decorations, books, lots, and lots of cookies, pancakes, cheesecakes, and all kinds of desserts. Even dinner reservations were made by some of our colleagues, who offered to cook their house specialty, and include the transportation to the winner or the winners, depending on how many rebels were able to bet on that offer and win their prize.
Of course, we could not miss the annual sausages, so known here in Romania, which were the most wanted ones, yet the most expensive ones.
From books to toys, home decorations and food, you were able to bet and fight for what our soul and mind really wanted.
In the end, we managed to have fun, fun creating our own game, from which we could give back even more. Give back to our community, to those less fortunate than us.
Seeing that we can contribute to a little spark of someone’s wish, for only he knows how long, was everything to us.
- Engage the teams in a fun activity ✅
- Raise 4 125 EUR to 8 different social causes ✅
Our Christmas gift for our clients? ✨
We decided to double the sum on their behalf, increasing the amount raised from 4 125 EUR to 8 250 EUR. Because we could not decide on one single cause to donate to, we decided to split the amount.
- Dragoste desculta / Barefooted Love – 28.9%
- Equipping the Pulmonology Section of the Children’s Hospital in Cluj-Napoca – 27.6%
- Hope & Homes for Children – 11.8%
- TAC – Transylvania Animal Care – 10.5%
- Orfelinatul din Bistrita – 9.2%
- Casa de Tip Familial Maica Domnului – 7.9%
- Lemne de Foc – 3% –
- Uniti pentru Miruna SMA 1 – 1%
Here is how we wrapped this one up:
Were you expecting a branded mug or T-shirt from us this Christmas?
While we look forward to sending some to you with another occasion, this year we want to break the pattern of material corporate gifts, and we are giving you something that is truly meaningful. The gift of giving. 🎁
Like last year, this time, we picked a few social causes we wanted to give back to.
For that, we organized an auction and had our people bidding for random items offered by colleagues, from traditional food to DIY Christmas decorations, scented candles, a whole lotta cakes, folk nights, or even custom memes.
We called it #rebelswithacause. It was a brilliant way of having fun while giving back.
Now, what does all this have to do with our present for you?
We took the money raised from the charity auction and doubled the sum on your behalf. It’s our way of saying thank you for being a trusted partner and contributing to our mission of building great products while being mindful of the world around us. In total, we managed to raise 8 250 EUR to 8 different social causes.
Cliché or not, it is a Christmas 🎄 miracle that you, together with us, made it happen.
The team @ RebelDot’’
- Give clients a meaningful gift ✅
- Raise 8 250 EUR to 8 different social causes ✅
Our giving did not stop here. As we are always looking for people and organizations that have an impact on the world, we found ourselves sponsoring sport competitions like volley tournaments and rallies, sponsoring an entrepreneurial bootcamp for kids, and the purchase of medical equipment for medical institutions in Cluj.
In the corporate & business world, doing good can easily be interpreted as an empty brag or is reduced to purely transactional brand building efforts.
2021 has given us an important lesson about doing good as a company. One, you do not need an elaborated CSR plan. Second, fun and teambuilding activities are better when they serve a higher purpose.