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Tell us a bit about CME Group, the Foundation, and your philanthropic priorities?
Giving back to the communities in which our employees and clients live and work is important to CME Group. We are fortunate that so many of our employees, as well as members of our larger exchange community, share our commitment to give back and support our charitable initiatives. The CME Group Community Foundation, which focuses on helping with education, children in need, and health and human services is an important part of our philanthropic efforts, and it is through the Foundation that we make our corporate donation to Bright Pink and match donations made by our employees.
Why Bright Pink?
Managing risk is our business, and we appreciate that Bright Pink has made it theirs, too. As the only national non-profit focused on the early detection and prevention of breast and ovarian cancer, Bright Pink is meeting an important need for the at-risk community. Knowledge is power, and Bright Pink is empowering young women across the country to live proactively at a young age. That is a cause we are proud to stand behind.
What activities take place at the office or elsewhere during the campaign?
We host kickoff receptions in each of our offices, which is a fun way to celebrate the campaign results from the prior year and get everyone excited to start again. In addition to our corporate fundraising page, we also have a number of employees with personal connections to the cause who make their own fundraising appeals. Their efforts have been a big boost to us and also reinforce just how many people’s lives have been affected by breast and ovarian cancer. While fundraising is important, we also want to educate our employees about the risks associated with these cancers. We partner with Bright Pink to host Brighten Up Workshops at our offices each year, which have been well attended and received. For us, it comes down to raising money and awareness.
What has been the most creative department fundraiser? The most successful?
This year, our Corporate Marketing & Communications Division is hosting a “Pink Pong Tournament”, which is a clever spin on our pink for a purpose theme to raise money for the cause. Our Legal Department has been a phenomenal supporter of the campaign, sponsoring a bake sale for the past two years that has raised more than $6,000. The effort has even gone global, with our Bangalore office sponsoring a fair to celebrate the Diwali holiday with all proceeds benefiting Bright Pink. These are just a few examples of the enthusiasm the campaign has generated among our team.
How has this partnership impacted CME Group employees personally?
One of the most meaningful aspects of our campaign is a “Share Your Story” feature on our company intranet. We’ve had a number of employees open up about what the fight against breast and ovarian cancer means to them personally. Across our fundraising pages, you see messages being added to donations to honor colleagues, friends and family members who have suffered from breast and ovarian cancer. This cause really hits home for our employees, which makes it even more of a priority for us.
What advice do you have for others organizing corporate philanthropy?
First, you have to pick a cause that you believe in and that you know will resonate with your community. Then you have to find the right partner. Bright Pink has been amazing to work with and really responsive to our needs. But above all else, you have to be creative and give everyone a chance to get involved, whether that’s through fundraising or donating, or even just becoming more informed about the cause and why it matters.