The CEO Sleepout is on 23 June and face2face Recruitment is raising funds for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness. Our CEO, Kate Prior, our General Manager, Jade Hansen, and five staff are all in.

While this is the first time face2face has participated in the CEO Sleepout, it’s far from the first time the business has given back to community. A spirit of generosity is ingrained in face2face’s culture. It’s woven into its vision, mission and values and has been since the business began in 2005.

CEO, Kate Prior says it’s critical for businesses to give back to the communities that support them, and beyond if possible. In this interview, Kate explains why.

Why does face2face give back?

Businesses don’t operate in isolation or in a bubble. They’re part of the community fabric. Expecting others to support your business, but not supporting others as a business doesn’t make sense.

At face2face, we don’t feel obligated to give back, or do so to generate profit. It’s a genuine desire to give—a generosity of spirit. Staff love it. They meet new people, learn new things and feel proud. They get to know one another in different ways, which builds team spirit.

How does face2face give back?

face2face gives back in many ways. We donate money, raise money and give in-kind support. We also pay staff for an annual volunteer day so they can support a cause that’s near-and-dear to them. face2face also gives staff time off for blood and plasma donations with the Australian Red Cross.

How is giving back part of your culture?

It’s a central part of our mission statement: We deliver exemplary service through inspired recruiters, support and admin staff who care about each other, about quality recruitment and about paying it forward in our community.

It’s also one of our core valuesCommunity—Pay it forward in our community with gratitude.

When did face2face begin giving back?

face2face has been giving back since we opened our doors in 2005. It’s part of our DNA.

We don’t give back for financial gain, or publicity or to receive thanks. We do it for community.

Our staff tell me they’re proud to be part of a socially conscious organisation. Many have said it’s new to them … that other places they’ve worked aren’t so giving.

Who do you give back too?

There have been so many causes over the years. Stable ones are:

For the past 16 years we’ve organised a Christmas giving tree for the Salvation Army. Last year, we donated over 100 gifts for families that can’t afford presents. This included two push bikes, two scooters, large inflatable pools and $2,000.00 in gift cards.

Getting behind multiple charities, large and small, is important but we also sponsor, organise and host local events, like Christmas parties for disadvantaged children. We also organised a sausage sizzle for drought-stricken farmers. Staff were pumped to raise $2,000.

Besides donating and raising funds, we’ve held free seminars for jobseekers and donated free resources to libraries, Communities@Work and Carers ACT, including the “Resume Success Secrets” book I wrote.

How much have you donated?

face2face has donated $214,000 since opening and given $82,000 in kind. Even during COVID when our profits plummeted, we continued to support our charities even though we weren’t eligible for Job Keeper.

What motivated you to be part of the CEO Sleepout?

I’ve considered it often but never got there. When I was asked for 2022, I decided not to let another year go by.

There’s no arguing that everyone deserves a safe place to call home. It’s a business and community responsibility to solve this problem and I’m raising funds every way I can think of. I’ve passed several targets and have so far raised over $4,000. [If you would like to support Kate to raise even more funds, head to the Kate Prior page on the CEO Sleepout website.

What’s your advice to businesses thinking about paying it forward?

  1. Do it for the right reason, not to get something back. Do it because you want to support your community and causes close to you.
  2. Think about small and large events. Every dollar counts for so many charities and causes.
  3. Support staff ideas so they can get out there and give.
  4. Just pay it forward whenever you can.