GSK Proud in Houston
A group of GSK Sales professionals model the importance of being thankful and giving back to others less fortunate.
When the team, led by Immunology field vice president, Sherrita Dorsey-Peete, chose a location for their last face-to-face leadership meeting, they decided they would roll up their sleeves and give back to others by conducting a volunteering event in hurricane-ravaged Houston. As Houston residents, both Sherrita and an account specialist, Essence Nixon, had witnessed the devastation of Hurricane Harvey first-hand.
“Our motivation was to go into a neighborhood severely impacted, without a lot of resources, and to help people get back on their feet,” said Essence.
They were aware of the $1 million contribution by GSK toward relief efforts and consulted with US Community Partnerships to identify a non-profit organization with whom they could partner. Samaritan’s Purse, an international non-profit organization that provides emergency relief efforts, turned out to be the right fit. Within 48 hours, they responded to the team’s request with a volunteer program that met their criteria: helping a family in a mobile home community save their water-flooded home.
On October 24th, 10 GSK employees (Sherrita Dorsey-Peete, Debra Davis King, Angela Hailes, Rob Walls, Marcus Laster, Steve Ward, Dojo Aguilar, Barbara Seeger, Essence Nixon, and Greg Jacobsen) along with volunteers from Samaritan’s Purse spent half a day helping a young family begin their home restoration process. Their mobile home lot was littered with all sorts of area debris resulting from the massive flood waters, including materials that had come apart from the family’s home.
“We didn’t know where to begin; there was debris piled high all around us,” said Greg. “It was a physically and emotionally intense day because in addition to clearing out the debris and doing yard work, we helped the family go through their belongings to identify what to keep and what to throw away.”
“It was an honor working with my team and our partners, living out our GSK values of teamwork, courage and respect by working together to see a common challenge, then watch the collective team serve a community in need,” said Sherrita. “We had no clear place to start and no clear idea of what the outcome would be at the end but everyone courageously rolled up their sleeves in GSK fashion and focused on helping more people do more and feel better by our fearless and committed efforts! We are thankful to work for an organization that allows employees time off to serve others. Our lives and hearts were changed that day. We are forever GSK Proud!”