Fighting Hunger with Nielsen’s Green Team in the Pacific

Wendi is the Senior Manager of Corporate Services, based in Sydney, Australia. Wendi leads Nielsen’s Green team in the Pacific and recently drove a month-long campaign to support Hunger Action Month. Through these initiatives, Wendi has helped educate our associates about hunger and food waste, reduce our carbon footprint, and make a difference for people seeking relief.

I have been with Nielsen Sydney for 14 years. I came to the company through my background in the printing industry. Back then, Nielsen did a lot of printing for our surveys, marketing materials, and more. My role coming in was to work with our internal stakeholders and our vendors to manage printing for Australia and New Zealand. Looking back, I think this is where my passion grew for the environment, as I was constantly looking for ways to reduce our print carbon footprint.

Fast forward to today, I manage a team of business support staff across Australia and New Zealand. We work across the areas of procurement, vendor management, office management, productivity measures, legal and other ad hoc projects. Nielsen provides me and my colleagues with amazing opportunities to grow and stretch in many areas. I am also the lead for the Green Team in the Pacific, covering Australia and New Zealand. We are a team of 28 passionate people who are dedicated and committed to making a difference in our working and personal environment. We lead the charge in educating our colleagues that a small simple action makes a difference.

This year, the Green Team had the amazing opportunity to “own” our local initiatives for Hunger Action Month, a month to spread the word and take action on the hunger crisis. We knew this would give our team the opportunity to educate people about hunger and food waste, raise funds to make a change for people seeking relief, reduce our carbon footprint, show people how to coordinate their own events, and engage teams across all of Nielsen’s business to participate.

Through the months of September and October, we successfully engaged the entire business, including the Nielsen Sports, Gracenote, and the television audience measurement teams, across four office locations and two countries. We did this by using our internal Google+ network to market our campaigns and educate people on the facts. We also created visual keys around the office to remind people of Hunger Action Month, and we used the TVs in all of our offices to promote our digital marketing campaign. We partnered with three organizations: OzHarvestMission Australia and EatMyLunch, and we raised funds on their behalf through three in-office events.

At the end of October, our Australian team donated 150 full bags of food, which equals 8,240 meals. In New Zealand, we packed over 1,500 meals for school lunches and donated to purchase meals for school children in our local communities. By using tote bags from OzHarvest, we prevented over 1,000 plastic bags from going into landfills. We raised over $12,000 for our partners and educated our staff about how hunger is affecting our community and the world. Through our initiatives, my colleagues and I came together in such a positive and supporting way, and we brought energy and life to Hunger Action Month.

From this journey I have learned that we should never walk past another human in need. We need to help everyone stand up and be respected, while supporting where we can with what we can. This is what Nielsen does for their employees here in the Pacific; it asks what we would like out of our time at Nielsen, and then supports, encourages, respects, teaches and mentors us during our journey with the company.