V Team Volunteer Spotlight

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Making a difference is a way of life for this military veteran and V Team recruiter.




By: Rebecca Nicole Laming

Dedicating time and service to improve the world takes on a new meaning for Jorge Hernandez, who is celebrating his first anniversary with Verizon tomorrow as a recruiter.

Jorge served in the military and was attracted to Verizon based on the company's commitment to giving back and a strong track record for supporting the military community. In his short tenure with Verizon, Jorge has built an impressive volunteer resume: Writing letters to veterans through Operation Gratitude, walking in support of mental health with NAMI, and showing his gratitude to first responders.

Like Jorge, you can make a difference across our social responsibility pillars: Digital Inclusion, Climate Protection, and Human Prosperity.

Check out our Volunteer Portal and select from over 150 virtual activities that contribute to our company-wide goal of 2.5 million volunteer hours by 2025. Read on to learn more about Jorge and let’s wish him a happy V Team anniversary.

Q: What inspired you to sign up for the Volunteer Platform?

A: Volunteering is simply a way of life for me, but COVID-19 has been a devastating force for so many people and communities. I signed up for the Volunteer Platform after learning about the isolation many older adults are experiencing while separated from their loved ones in quarantine. At that point in your life, you should be able to enjoy every moment and be around the people you love. It saddened me that older adults, especially veterans, felt alone during this challenging time. I got my entire family involved and we created letters for older adults and veterans to brighten their day. I was also excited to support first responders who are heroes on the front line and deserve to be celebrated.

Q: What causes have you volunteered for?

A: I understand sacrifice, being part of the military during 9/11, so I gravitate towards volunteer opportunities like writing letters to older veterans or providing meals to troops overseas. Leveraging my experience in recruitment and talent acquisition, I mentor young students and military members by helping them prepare for interviews and develop their resumes. I also walked 30 miles in a week for NAMI to raise awareness for mental health.

Q: Why is it important to give back during COVID-19?

A: I have a soft spot for first responders and work directly with them when enlisted. Here in Chicago, I have family members who are nurses, and I would do anything to show my support for their heroic efforts. I pray they stay healthy as they continue their noble battle.

Q: How important is it to work for a company that encourages volunteer activities?

A: Other than serving in the military, I have never worked for a company that promotes volunteerism and emphasizes the importance of service like Verizon. I am proud to be a part of a company that encourages its employees to take action and give back. It's good to know when the gears need to be shifted to serve a larger purpose, the V Team comes together to support each other and those in need.

Q: How do your volunteer efforts make a difference?

A: I have not seen my grandmother since this crisis started, and I don't want her to forget her great-grandchildren. While sending flowers are lovely, they don't last. That inspired me to create as many origami as possible to include in letters to older adults and veterans. Our entire family sat down to write messages, and we made memories together with each fold of the origami. The smallest things mean the most and I believe that our messages and origami made people smile. That’s just awesome.