#1MillionHours2Help: “I wanted to contribute to the society in which I grew up.”
Graciele Silva and Lucas Mesquita Vieira are both employees of BNP Paribas Personal Finance in Brazil. As part of the 1MH2H program, they are involved with associations to help people in difficulty.
Let's explore their commitment.
Could you introduce yourself?
Lucas: I am the Manager of a team in charge of financial security for compliance within BNP Paribas Personal Finance Brazil.
Graiciele: For my part, I am Tech Lead and Senior Analyst at Cetelem.
Which programs for people in difficulty supported by BNP Paribas Personal Finance are you involved in? What are they?
Graciele: I chose to join the Arca de Crescer program to help young people over 15 in vulnerable situations in São Paulo. It is a vocational qualification center for young people. I study with them their strengths and weaknesses, and help them develop their skills, both professional and personal. We are also working together on career development possibilities. I also make them aware of the fact that thanks to studies, they can change their social reality. This center also allows them to follow short-term training courses in the areas of hospitality, baking and sales.
In addition, I participate in the Technovation Girls Brasil mentorship program, which enables young girls around the world to learn and apply their skills to solve real-world problems through technology.
Lucas: As far as I'm concerned, I've been offered to volunteer for the Reciclare program. The mission is to help young people from disadvantaged backgrounds learn English and to make them aware of the behaviors to adopt in order to get off to a good start in their professional and personal life.
In Brazil, helping disadvantaged people is very important. Why?
Graciele: Brazil is a country of great contrast with its wealth of natural resources on the one hand and its extreme social inequalities on the other. Access to learning and to school is also very unequal. Lucas also agrees to say that it is important to develop this type of program to reduce these inequalities by investing in education and solidarity.
Besides yourself, how many BNP Paribas Personal Finance employees are involved?
Lucas: About ten employees are also involved. And for my part, I hope to stay that way for as long as possible.
Graciele: I would add that these are very structured programs, with pre-established themes and clear objectives to achieve. One of the big strengths is also that the management team succeeds in clearly identifying the complementarity of the mentee and mentor profiles.
What motivates you to get involved in these programs?
Lucas: When I was young, I would have liked to have had this kind of support to easily achieve goals that were not very clear to me at the time. Today, I want to contribute at my level to the society in which I grew up by getting my hands dirty and helping financially.
Graciele: I believe that on an individual level you can't change the whole world, but you can change someone's life, that is my goal.
In your opinion, what are the benefits for the company if its employees are involved in these initiatives?
Graciele: I was discussing this with Lucas earlier and we have the same opinion. Businesses are part of the community. Thus we believe that by getting involved and by involving its employees in actions to help society, the company not only participates in sustainable social and economic growth but also benefits from the recognition of its customers and employees.
Are you proud to be part of a company that is so involved socially speaking?
Lucas: I agree with Graciele on the fact that BNP Paribas Personal Finance Brazil is a company particularly concerned with the social and economic environment. By making it possible to carry out mutual development actions in a serious and efficient manner, it proves its dedication to its employees. We are very proud of it.
Will these programs continue? Maybe with more collaborators?
Lucas: Of course. It’s only a matter of time before other collaborators would join us.
Graciele: We would like to educate more employees to participate in these programs and why not join new ones with different goals. Speaking of creation, the "Budget Responsible" program on the theme of financial education will soon take shape at BNP Paribas Personal Finance Brazil.
Do you have a final word?
Lucas: Graciele and I are very grateful to BNP Paribas Personal Finance Brazil for giving us this opportunity to participate in these types of programs. These programs are very beneficial to the people supported, but also to the company, its employees and more broadly to society.