Check out this #GenerosityStory interview I’ve had with Irene Catiter-Gutierrez, a corporate executive for Autodesk Singapore who’s made volunteering part of her lifestyle.
Joanna: Hi everyone! I'm here with my friend Irene, and I'm so excited to hear about her generosity story. So, can you tell us about your activities in the giving space?
Irene: I try to look for opportunities to give wherever I go. For example, I try to volunteer to organize outreach events that my company can participate in. I enjoy getting people together, especially if it's for a cause.
How did this start? I wanted to spend my birthday ten years ago meaningfully. So I gathered my friends and we went to a hospital to spend time with the sick kids there. Our goal was to make them happy. After that first event, I felt that it's something that I want to do continuously.
Joanna: How long has it been going on?
Irene: 10 years.
Joanna: Ten years! Wow. So, every year you've been doing that?
Irene: Yes. I realized that by gathering people at work and in my personal life, I also create opportunities for other people to help and to give.
Joanna: That's great! How have your friends been responding to your invites?
Irene: They've been very supportive.
Joanna: And for them for sure it's fun, and you know it's with a purpose, and they trust you. And because they trust you, they know that when you ask for donations that it’s going to the right people, it’s a credible organization.
Irene, I'm very interested to know how you organize these parties for a cause. So in a gist, how do you organize something like that?
Irene: I look for organizations whose causes I believe in. I would search and filter. When I find the right one that resonates with me, their advocacy and what they stand for, I contact them. From there, I would gather my friends. I also put up an events page on Facebook and invite them to it.
Joanna: Facebook events page—a very useful tool, right? So it's basically like organizing any other party. But instead of booking a venue you would book a beneficiary's venue, which in this case is a hospital.
What has giving or your acts of generosity done to your life?
Irene: Well, actually when I give, it's the time when I feel most alive. I feel that life is meaningful and happy. I believe that to give is to live because there's no other way to live than this.
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