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Manila Office Launch

Kelly Salance

On Monday of this week, Zendesk announced the official launch of our new office in Manila. It was an exciting day in the office, with many celebrations, photos and conversations highlighting the office as a regional cornerstone for Zendesk. As part of the official launch, the Neighbor Foundation Executive Director, Tiffany Apczynski, spoke about our involvement to the local Manila communities.

While the team in Manila has been working closely we local communities for over a year, Tiffany emphasized our long-term commitment to our partner non-profit organizations by announcing the presence of the Neighbor Foundation in the Philippines.  Through the Foundation, we are committed to granting at least $85,000 USD to local non-profit organizations in 2017. Additionally, we set a goal of providing at least 1,000 hours of volunteer services by the employees.

As part of the launch, we held a CSR lunch with Hands On Manila, one of our non-profit partners, and scholars from our Zendesk Scholars Program, as well as Mikkel, Tiffany and the Manila office heads for a special lunch and presentation. Hands on Manila works to connect volunteers with a variety of nonprofit organizations, and in our case they have helped us work to organize our Scholars Program.  Through this program, we have sponsored 15 students from Gat Andres Bonifacio High School and Nampicuan Elementary School to continue their secondary school education. We began sponsoring these students last year and will continue to sponsor them until they finish their secondary education and potentially beyond that as well. The students sang a beautiful thank you song to all of our staff and the principal from each school spoke about our special partnership. To cap off the lunch, each student was given a care package to take home which included a lunch sack, water bottle and sweatshirt.

As evidenced by the inspiring launch, we are excited to continue to develop strong relationships and expand our impact with our Manila community.


Groundbreaking and Beyond!

Kelly Salance

Today is an exciting day for us in Manila! We had the official Groundbreaking Ceremony for a Daycare center we are building in partnership with Hands on Manila. Located in Pusawan, Bgy. Ususan, Taguid City, the Daycare will serve the children of 2,000 families who live in the community.

Currently, the children in the community attend two existing Daycare centers inside the narrow zone of the barangay – the native Filipino term for a village. The new two-room Daycare will be a much-needed upgrade for the daycares. Located in a centralized and accessible area for the community, the center will have more space, better ventilation and updated infrastructure for the students.

The project will be fully funded by a Neighbor Foundation grant, and even constructed with the help of Zendesk employees. It is expected to be completed by the end of Spring. With a sense of celebration in the air today, we know this project will be a great addition to the community and are looking forward to posting pictures as the project progresses!

New Hire Volunteering In Melbourne

Kelly Salance

Imagine it’s your first day at a new job. Typically, you spend the day filling out paperwork, meeting your team, navigating around the office and trying to locate your desk. At Zendesk, we like to do things a little differently. We still make sure you accomplish the essentials but on Day One, our new Zendeskians head out in the community and volunteer! That is exactly what brought our new hires in Melbourne to Purple Lion at their Little Learners Centre last December.

Purple Lion is a non-profit organization that supports quality education and development of children with autism.  Due to funding, Purple Lion focus on creating a lot of the resources onsite in order to ensure all extra funds are being put towards the care of their students. These types of tasks are quite time consuming and therefore become less of a priority and are often done after hours by the staff.

Our eager group of new hires joined the Purple Lion staff in North Melbourne to help the teachers with these tasks and more. They jumped right in, helping cut and laminate artwork for projects for the Little Learners Program, decorating the building for the holidays, construct new furniture and beautify two areas with themed wall décor. We also must extend a special thank you to the teachers at Purple Lion who were so accommodating to our group.

Being active in our community is a core part what makes Zendesk, Zendesk. New employees go volunteering at the beginning of their career at Zendesk to understand the importance of being a part of our neighborhood as well as bond together as new Zendeskians. It’s our way of saying, welcome to the team!

Zendesk Neighbor Foundation 2016 Annual Report

Kelly Salance

This post is originally from the Zendesk blog. Check out the full post there.

At Zendesk, we believe in building better relationships—with our customers, between our employees, and with our local community. Founded in 2015, The Zendesk Neighbor Foundation works to connect our global offices and employees with the local communities they call home. We take a hyperlocal approach (everywhere from San Francisco to London to Singapore to Sao Paulo) to giving back and focus on addressing homelessness and poverty, technical literacy, neighborhood improvement, diversity and gender equality, workforce development, and education in the communities where we have offices. In 2016, we continued this work and we are delighted to announce the launch of our 2016 Annual Report, which captures our accomplishments throughout the year.

Last year was a fantastic period of growth and achievement for the Neighbor Foundation. We focused on strengthening existing partnerships, as well as seeking to expand our reach and impact. In 2016, the Zendesk Neighbor Foundation donated $1.3 million in the communities where we work, contributing almost four times more this year than we did in 2015. Our employees also spent over 5,600 hours volunteering with out 62 partner non-profit organizations around the globe. We plan on continuing this momentum in 2017 with ambitious goals of supporting our neighbors through 20,000 volunteer hours and over $1.3 million in grants.

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This year, we tried something new and built the annual report using Zendesk's own analytics and data product, Explore. Using Explore allows for a more visual and interactive experience where you are able to highlight specific office engagements, breakdown focus area and visualize our year-over-year growth. With this new platform, our report will no longer be stagnant throughout the year:  We will be able to have greater transparency by updating the report quarterly, providing a living document. 

We want to give a special thank you to all our non-profit partners for their hard work and dedication. As we enter into 2017, we invite our Zendesk communitycustomers, employees and neighborsto join us in continuing to positively impact our neighborhoods. 

2016 Top Volunteers

Kelly Salance

As evidenced by our 2016 Annual Report, this last year was a fantastic period of growth and achievement for the Neighbor Foundation. We want to take this moment to highlight our top volunteers in each region. These individuals have gone above and beyond in 2016, illustrating how to be a socially conscious citizen and exemplary employee at Zendesk.

Overview of our 2016 achievements from our Annual Report.

Overview of our 2016 achievements from our Annual Report.

San Francisco

Aaron Pewtherer - This last year, Aaron was our top volunteer in San Francisco with 59 hours. Impressively, 49 of those hours were with Reading Partners, an organization that partners with under-resourced schools and works one-on-one with students who struggle with reading. Thanks for commitment this year, Aaron!

Lori Gauthier - In 2016, Lori had a fantastic year and was the top volunteer in terms of frequency. As an active Meals on Wheels deliverer, Lori volunteered at 32 of the shifts and overhauled the process for meal delivery, streamlining for efficiency, and helping employees to better connect with the clients.

Lori delivering meals to a resident at the Raman Hotel. Photo curtesy of Leah Millis at The Chronicle.

Lori delivering meals to a resident at the Raman Hotel. Photo curtesy of Leah Millis at The Chronicle.


Erin Hampe - Erin volunteered 54 hours throughout 2016 with many different Madison organizations, always encouraging others in the office to join her. What’s more remarkable, in 2016, Erin was promoted to become a Tier 1 Manager on our Support team demonstrating how you can be successful in your job growth at Zendesk and be a top contributing member in our community.   


Saajan Shah - As a Senior Technical Support Engineer in our London office, Saajan is certainly kept busy with his job. Despite this, Saajan was a regular volunteer with our Team London interns throughout 2016. He stood out as one of the top volunteers because he would always go the extra mile for the interns, continually making sure they all had someone to eat lunch with and generally felt welcome in the office. Great work, Saajan!

Saajan and other Zendesk employees providing guidance at a HeadStart workshop in our London office.

Saajan and other Zendesk employees providing guidance at a HeadStart workshop in our London office.

Nick Peart - With an impressive 71 volunteer hours, Nick was our top global volunteer of 2016 working with organizations like Team London, HeadStart and The Challenge.  

I’m proud of very small part I have played in the great work carried out by all Zendeskians around the globe who strive to make a difference, simply because it is the right thing to do. I am always amazed at how much you can learn, grow and develop simply by giving up a little bit of your own time.
— Nick Peart


Clayton Da Silva - Clayton is a Director of Customer Success in our Sao Paulo office. As an expert in all things Zendesk, it was only natural that Clayton helped to head up our Zendesk Certification program with one of our local non-profit partners, IOS. He helped to get the program up and running including training all of the trainers. Clayton has also visited several of the local orphanages that we partner with and babies love him (evidence below). Thanks for all your hard work this year, Clayton the-Baby-Whisperer DaSilva!


Beverly Festejo - Beverly is a volunteer rockstar in our Manila office! She has volunteered every shift that has been available even beyond her work hours. She has even invited many of her friends to join us in our efforts. 

Thanks to our top volunteers for helping make 2016 our best year yet. Having champions in our offices around the globe are essential to our success in our local communities. Looking forward to 2017!