Giving Back on #GivingTuesday

December 1, 2020

Today marks #GivingTuesday, a global movement to inspire people to do good and give back in their communities. 

Every day, everywhere around the world, Caterpillar people – the doers – use their time and talents to support communities where we live and work. From local volunteer efforts, to supporting United Way or other important causes, to our worldwide disaster responses, our global team is helping build a better world. 

Today we celebrate you, Caterpillar team. There are countless examples of generosity from around the world. Here are just a few.

(Note: Some of the photos pictured below were taken before the COVID-19 pandemic and prior to masks being a requirement in Caterpillar facilities.)

Alex Brackett

Alex Stokman – Cary, North Carolina

Retail Development Manager, Building Construction Products 

Alex is assistant team lead of the Central North Carolina Chapter for Sheep Dog Impact Assistance. The organization is a national nonprofit that engages, assists and empowers the nation’s "Sheep Dogs" – veterans, law enforcement, fire and rescue, and EMS personnel – to reengage and live a meaningful, productive life with a renewed sense of purpose. Alex helps engage local veterans and first responders by supporting and encouraging participation in service opportunities and adventures that offer physical challenges and the camaraderie often missing after a tour of duty ends. 

As a retired Marine with severe injuries, Alex first became involved when she met the organization’s founder during a Spartan race. At the time, she was discouraged, thinking she couldn’t ever participate in the race. As she watched the Sheep Dogs work together to help an amputee overcome each obstacle, Alex knew she wanted to be part of their community. 

Andreza Teixeira

Andreza Teixeira – Piracicaba, Brazil

Material Planning Analyst, Earthmoving

Andreza volunteers for two local organizations – The Army of Little Ants and the Lionser Institute. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Andreza has helped The Army of Little Ants campaign for funds and distribute food, clothing, furniture and medication to those most in need. The organization has distributed more than 4,200 baskets with supplies, including cleaning kits, masks and sanitizer. They even helped rebuild a home that caught fire. 

Through her work with the Lionser Institute, Andreza provides emotional intelligence training, giving individuals tools to help address struggles and find inner strength. Andreza dedicates her time and energy to this work because it leaves her extremely fulfilled. She enjoys seeing others find new meaning in life and achieve personal goals. 

Artur Jeronimo

Artur Jeronimo – Piracicaba, Brazil

EHS Analyst, Oil & Gas and Marine

Artur first began volunteering through Caterpillar. He was so inspired to do more and give back, he joined Rotary International and Rotaract – a global movement of young leaders who develop innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. In support of his Rotaract club, Artur visits retirement homes, helping spread suicide prevention awareness. He also participates in the organization’s podcasts promoting community projects. 

One of Arthur’s favorite things about volunteering is being able to use problem-solving skills to create innovative and sustainable solutions that help his community. He also enjoys helping develop others so they, too, can help make an impact.

Cristiane Motta

Cristiane Motta – Sao Paulo, Brazil

HR Consultant, Financial Products

Cristiane volunteers for a local nonprofit, Famizza, that makes pizzas for fundraising events hosted by various philanthropic organizations, supporting causes that benefit families, children and the elderly.  

Cristiane says she gives back to her community because she is grateful for everything in her life – family, friends and a great place to work – and wants to make a difference in others’ lives. Plus, she loves spending time with her son and daughter, who volunteer alongside her. Cristiane says putting a smile on someone else’s face makes it all worth it.  

Don Kinsey

Don Kinsey – Franklin, Indiana

Facility Manager, Oil & Gas and Marine

As a pilot, Don lends his time, talent and financial resources to Grace on Wings, the nation’s only charitable air ambulance service that reunites families that have been separated due to unexpected and sometimes tragic medical conditions. He was inspired to get involved after seeing a story on the local news several years ago that captured the spirit of utilizing one’s gifts to give back to the community.

Don says serving Grace on Wings is the most rewarding service work he’s ever been a part of. One of his favorite things about volunteering with the organization is the amazing experience of having a family member of a patient climb out of the back of the ambulance with tears in their eyes and give him a big hug of thanks. 

Eduardo Costa

Eduardo Costa – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Account Manager, Solar Turbines

For the last several years, Eduardo has donated time and money to Casa de Apoio a Crianca com Cancer. The organization focuses on providing medication, proper nutrition, and temporary housing for children in need who are being treated for cancer, ensuring they can focus on getting better. 

Eduardo says he and his wife were inspired to give back to the organization in part because they don’t have children of their own and wanted to make a difference in the lives of those suffering in their community. 

Fernando Limonge

Fernando Limonge – Piracicaba, Brazil

Category Buyer, Earthmoving

Fernando believes in the power of giving back and volunteers with an organization focused on supporting homeless people in the local community – providing food, personal hygiene products and clothes. He also assists with an annual pizza fundraiser directly benefitting the organization, and enabling it to continue its mission.

Fernando says his children are his biggest inspiration for giving back. He’s focused on leaving a legacy that instills the importance of exercising gratitude and using that power to help those in need.   

Jason Becker

Jason Becker – Cary, North Carolina

Marketing Manager, Building Construction Products

Jason is the executive director of Hunting with Heroes, a nonprofit founded by him and his father in 2011 that focusses on the physical and emotional healing of our nation's military heroes through community support, camaraderie, and various outdoor pursuits in the rural communities of northern Iowa and southern Minnesota. In celebration of the organization’s 10-year anniversary, they hosted 10 Wounded Warriors for an all-expenses paid week of hunting and comradery. The charity also hosted over 300 local veterans and their families for a socially distanced drive-through, providing all veterans with full Thanksgiving meal kits and gift baskets. Local dealer Ziegler Cat also provides equipment each year to cut miles of paths to assist the Wounded Warriors as they traverse the fields of Iowa. Additionally, with the help of Ziegler, BCP and many other supporters, the organization procured a Cat UTV that is used to safely transport the wounded warriors and local veterans during their multiple annual events.

Jason was inspired to create Hunting with Heroes after visiting Arlington National Cemetery where he encountered families visiting recently sodded graves of fallen servicemen and women. Recognizing he couldn’t help those already fallen, Jason was inspired to support those who had come close to losing their lives and began the charity. Since its founding, Hunting with Heroes has engaged and supported nearly 3,200 local veterans and visiting Wounded Warriors from all over the United States as they heal from the physical and emotional injuries of war.

John Janes

John Janes – Cary, North Carolina

Marketing & Sales Support Manager, Building Construction Products

John is a big supporter of Habitat for Humanity, helping build affordable houses for those in need in his local community. He first got involved when BCP partnered with the local organization to build a home in Raleigh. John dedicated nearly every Saturday during the 10-week period to help with the construction. He was so inspired by the project that he’s continued to volunteer for the organization, dedicating 184 hours of his time this year alone.  

John finds motivation in making others happy and building communities. You can learn more about his passion for Habitat in this story.

Jude Castell

Jude Castell – Wimborne, UK

Customer Service Representative, Oil & Gas and Marine

Not long after joining Caterpillar 10 years ago, Jude got involved with the charity events at the Wimborne facility and now leads the facility’s charity team. Employees are invited to suggest charities close to their heart, then the entire facility votes for the one they want to support for the next two years. Jude and the team help coordinate various volunteer events and spread awareness in the community about the nonprofit. While they haven’t been able to host as many events this year due the pandemic, the team looks forward to making up for lost time next year.

Jude says her favorite thing about giving back is helping others and connecting people that otherwise wouldn’t have. She loves inspiring others to pay it forward. 

Kris Nagy

Kris Nagy – Denver, Colorado

Industry Representative, Building Construction Products

Kris is a certified EMT and firefighter, volunteering for the community of Golden, Colorado. He volunteers alongside 90 other men and women, dedicating between 36-72 hours per month responding to some of the more than 2,000 emergencies within the region annually. To stay proficient with his craft, he trains 250+ hours annually for fire, medical emergencies, extractions, swift water and high angle rescues. 

Kris gives back because it is how he was raised. He takes great pride in helping make people’s lives a little better during what is often one of the worst times in their life. Even after 29 years as a first responder, Kris says he’s still amazed by the trust and faith strangers continue to put in him and his crew to solve their emergencies – be it critical, such as cardiac arrest, or the unusual like a duck stuck in a chimney (yes, they saved the duck). Kris also uses Caterpillar’s safety culture as a platform to provide real-life safety shares through his weekly “5 Minute Friday” product updates distributed to more than 200 Caterpillar and dealer employees. 

Kundavai Mani

Kundavai Mani – Thiruvallur, India

Manufacturing Engineering Manager, RI Operations & Product

For Kundavai, the joy of giving back to her community has always been a priority. Her primary focus is supporting education for village students. She also donates to several organizations that support the elderly, youth education, and cancer patients. Kundavai recently volunteered at a STEM event through an engineering college and mentored female students 

Growing up, Kundavai’s mother instilled the belief that educating others enlightens entire generations. Over the years, Kundavai continues to give back because she loves to see smiles from those she’s helping. She believes in living life to the fullest by making others happy.

Lara Fernandes

Lara Fernandes – Piracicaba, Brazil

Intern Co-op Student, Earthmoving

Lara is project director of the Rotaract Club of Piracicaba, a Rotary International program that includes a global network of young people sharing ideas and leading projects that address humanitarian challenges in new ways. 

Lara discovered her passion for giving back 10 years ago when she began volunteering for the Leo Club, a youth service club and Lions Club International program. Lara continues to practice an important lesson her parents instilled in her as a child – do good without looking at who and put service above self. One of her favorite things about volunteer work is meeting people from around the world. 

Marcos Souza

Marcos Souza – Piracicaba, Brazil

Section Manager, Earthmoving

Marcos volunteers for an animal shelter that provides care for 150 previously mistreated rescued dogs. Marcos believes that time is the most valuable asset and wants to make the world a better place. He was inspired to support this organization because he believes that compassion for animals is one of the most honorable types of respect, and dogs should live a dignified life, free of suffering.  

Pictured here with Marcos is Hanssen, one of the dogs cared for by the shelter. Marcos says if it weren’t for the fact he and his wife live in a small apartment, Hanssen would be an integral part of their life!

Patrick White

Patrick White – Island Lake, Illinois

Business Development Manager, Kemper Valve & Fitting Corp, Oil & Gas and Marine

Patrick is a board member and campaign chair for the local United Way of Greater McHenry County. In this role, he is focused on raising awareness and funds for 33 United Way partner agencies in the area. Patrick has also led Kemper’s United Way campaign for the last three years, helping achieve a 100% respondent rate and over 90% donor participation for the past two years. As a result of continued hard work, Patrick received the 2019-2020 Volunteer of the Year Award from the McHenry County United Way. 

In addition, Patrick’s neighborhood participates in a porch food drive. This year, in response to the pandemic, Patrick worked with Walmart and Target to coordinate deliveries to the Crystal Lake Food Pantry, limiting the need for door-to-door interactions.

Patrick says one of his favorite things about working with the United Way is inspiring others to give by educating them about the needs in their communities.

Sue Wheddon

Sue Wheddon – Dorset, UK

Facility Manager, Oil & Gas and Marine

Sue is enterprise advisor for the local secondary school in Wimborne where she works closely with the careers advisor to educate students on various careers, including those in our industry. She arranges tours of the facility, coordinates problem solving activities and provides opportunities for Caterpillar apprentices to share their experiences. She’s helped the organization adapt to the challenges presented by the pandemic by hosting virtual facility visits for the students.  

Sue strongly believes in the power of diversity and loves inspiring children and young adults to pursue careers in STEM, particularly because many wouldn’t get the exposure otherwise. She says the positive feedback she receives from the students after visiting the facility inspires her to continue giving back. Sue is also grateful for the support she receives from the Caterpillar team, including Sandra Orchard, the apprentice supervisor, and the entire apprentice team.

Vijay Thanraj

Vijay Thanraj – Thiruvallur, Tamilnadu, India

Section Manager, RI Operations & Product

Vijay lends time to his local community distributing dry rations and vegetables to those most in need. During the pandemic, he’s helped support the local police force in late night and early morning hours by providing coffee and snacks and donating grams, tree leaves and grains for the animals supporting the Circus team during the COVID-19 curfew.  

Vijay says his inspiration for volunteering is the satisfaction he gets when he sees the happy faces of those he’s helped. He doesn’t think of it as a donation, but rather, simply sharing what he has. 

BCP Athens GA

Building Construction Products – Athens, Georgia

Each year, the Athens team comes together to support the United Way Day of Caring, volunteering their time and talents to support various organizations and causes in the local community.

Despite the pandemic, the team completed multiple projects around the community this year. They helped build an outdoor classroom for a local elementary school, built benches for walking paths, constructed a chicken coop for a summer camp, assembled activity books for families, and more. The local newspaper even recognized their efforts!

BCP Japan

Building Construction Products – Japan

The Mini Hydraulic Excavator (MHE) commercial team hosted a cleanup event at Katase Higashihama Beach in partnership with Caterpillar customer Kanagawa Coastal Environmental Foundation, and local Cat® dealer NCD Shonan. Kanagawa Coastal Environmental Foundation owns three Cat® 914K compact wheel loader beach cleaners. The Caterpillar team provided a Cat® 302CR MHE and Cat® 308CR MHE to assist with woodchips and seaweed removal during the event. 

BCP team members also volunteered to pick up trash on the beach, resulting in a strong collaboration that enhances, sustains and serves the local community.  

Caterpillar Thailand

Caterpillar Thailand 

RI Operations & Product & Caterpillar Rayong Thailand Tractors 

A team of 20 volunteers from Caterpillar Thailand visited The Garden of Eden – a rehabilitation community for people living with HIV/AIDS who no longer have the support of their families. The Caterpillar team planted vegetable gardens and installed a sprinkler system, promoting the center’s goal of creating a self-supporting community. 

LSP Lafayette, Indiana

Large Power Systems – Lafayette, Indiana 

Quality Team

The Lafayette Quality Team is all about giving back and has supported several organizations in the local community. During the pandemic, the team found creative ways to continue serving the community safely – team members prepared 10 dinners from home with the help of their families for Lafayette Transitional Housing, a local homeless shelter. In total, the team will have provided 1,000 meals during a six-month period!  

They recently helped with various projects at their local Girl Scouts camp, building a railroad tie retaining wall and clearing walking trails. Another group used their volunteer day to help walk and take care of 28 dogs at Natalie’s Second Chance Dog Shelter. A third group helped organize a COVID-19-friendly block party fundraiser with their neighbors, raising around $1,600 for Food Finders Food Bank. 

Nate McPherson, quality manager, says it’s important for the team to continue supporting their local community during this time when so many face challenges. His advice to anyone considering safely volunteering for a cause within the community?   

“Go for it.”

LPS Tianjin, China

Large Power Systems – Tianjin, China

The Caterpillar Tianjin Limited (CTL) team participated in a Walking for Love fitness challenge to benefit Tibet Primary School. The result – a total of 480,000 steps taken, resulted in a donation of 60 dictionaries to the school. 

The CTL team strongly believes in giving back to the community and is proud to help build a better world through their philanthropic efforts. 

Aurora, IL

RI Operations & Product – Aurora, Illinois 

The RIOP Aurora team goes above and beyond to support the local Fox Valley United Way. Last year, the team logged over 750 volunteer hours painting, stocking shelves, and doing yard work for the organization. During the pandemic, 50 team members helped provide essential donations, as well as collect 300 children’s books to support the United Way chapter’s focus on early childhood education. The books were distributed to 10 partner agencies and “free libraries” throughout the Aurora community.