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Paul Kloiber, RBS Citizens Financial Group branch manager, was recently honored with the bank’s Citizens Helping Citizens Volunteer Award, which honors employee volunteers who perform exemplary service to the community.
As part of the award, the Citizens Bank Foundation will contribute $2,500 to the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center, which was chosen by Kloiber to be the recipient of these funds.
Kloiber, who works out of the bank’s Newport branch, volunteers for a number of organizations including the Boys Clubs & Girls Clubs of Newport County, Rhode Island Youth Pride, the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center and Lucy’s Hearth.
PBN: Why did you begin volunteering?
KLOIBER: I first started volunteering as a mentor at the Melrose School in Jamestown after discussing the Jamestown community with a bank customer. She thought I would be great at mentoring youth at the local grade school. It was only an hour a week, but it really made me feel a part of the child’s life and a part of the school – much more so than I ever would have imagined. I was awarded the 2008 Rhode Island Mentor of the Year for my work there. It’s amazing how spending time doing something that was fun to me can make that much of an impact.
PBN: How has volunteering impacted you professionally?
KLOIBER: My volunteer efforts have allowed me to meet a lot of great people whom I never would have met prior to me volunteering. Also, volunteering in the community where I work helps me understand the needs of the community and the people who live there so that I am able to serve them better in my job.
PBN: Do you think corporate charitable programs influence employees in the workplace?
KLOIBER: Yes. Something as easy as the bank’s annual Citizen Helping Citizens Colleague Giving campaign that allows colleagues to contribute to any eligible nonprofit can be an easy thing to do and a huge help to the community – as well as a steppingstone for colleagues to find other ways to help. Colleagues also have the opportunity to have their donation to an eligible nonprofit matched by the bank up to $1,000 per year. The Citizens Bank internal volunteer portal is also a great place for colleagues interested in volunteering to view opportunities. The portal’s opportunities give employees a chance to help a specific organization with a short commitment so they can learn the needs of the organization and community and in turn get them interested to do more. I also feel that it is important for an employee to know they work for a company that works to make their community a better place to live, which can [create] a sense of pride in their job. •