Omnibus Project: Q3 2021 Results

In April 2017, we launched our diversity initiative, the Omnibus Project, to promote diversity at Busbud and beyond. Every quarter, our team carries out up to 5 actions to help foster diversity and in turn reports publicly on our progress. 

We are thrilled to share the results for Q2 2021, ending June 30th. Here are our actions:

Refugee teenagers from Beirut.

1) Computers donation for refugees in Beirut. 

The Alsama Project started in 2020 in Lebanon with the mission to educate refugee teenagers and empower refugee women. The Project has allowed more than 500 children to learn English, Mathematics, and Arabic.

This September Alsama started a new IT Training Program for which they needed computers. Busbud was on board immediately! We donated a total of 4 computers that are now being used by refugees in Beirut. 

The economic outlook for refugees is bleak- there is 55% unemployment in Shatila Refugee Camp. By donating those computers, Busbud wanted to help create job opportunities for those teenagers. It was really rewarding to see the smiles on their faces.

2) Sustainability-loving green thumbs Project

Two of our Busbud values are Sustainability and Super helpful, so we decided to demonstrate them in the best way possible. Andrea and Nate organized an event named: Sustainability-loving green thumbs, where we had the chance to clean one of the biggest parks of Montreal, in order to give back to our community and also raise awareness about recycling and our environment. 

A group of super helpful Busbud members and family and a couple of Busbud dogs participated. As Oscar Wilde Said once: “The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the greatest intention.” People can always do small changes together to create a big impact. It’s important to remember that if we teach our kids, family and friends to take care of our Earth, we will guarantee a greater future for our generations.

Busbud team cleaning the Mont-Royal.

Organizing volunteering activities is always the best way to connect with our community and our Busbud values. As the current local restrictions are easing slowly, we will be able to organize more activities since Busbud is always willing to give back to our society.

3) The Diversity Library

It’s not always easy to find good sources of information when it comes to the subject of diversity in the workplace. For this reason, we decided to put in place a Diversity Library in our Montreal office. Inclusion, racism, disabilities, LGBTQIA2+, bias, we believe no subject should be taboo in our Work Culture.

Diversity library.

We started the project by buying a total of 13 physical books and are planning to expand the library adding new books/articles/videos each month. Additionally to the common subject of diversity, it was important for us to include and encourage writers from different backgrounds, cultures and with different life experiences. We are happy to say that almost half of the books we bought were written by people from underrepresented groups.

Our biggest challenge for this project was to find a way to share books virtually since most of our team is working remotely. At this moment, we haven’t found a solution for a virtual library but we are still working on the project to make it happen.


4) Donations at Busbud

At Busbud, we have a rewards system which includes busbud gear, gift cards, extra time off and money. For this quarter, we tried to get a better understanding of what our people think of donations and if they would be willing to redirect their reward to some organisms. 

We were pleased to see that almost half of the company participated in an anonymous survey which consisted of questions aimed to understand people’s point of view on donation practices.

Among others, these are a few of the results from the polls:

45,5% of employees are ready to participate in charity by donating money and 40,9%  by volunteering.

The vast majority of participants would like to have an option to pick charity for the company to donate, meaning choosing a charity from a given list for Busbud to give an amount. 

If given money by the company, the majority of people would agree to donate it in full or partially.

These results got us thinking about how we could improve our reward system by inviting more people to donate their reward instead of spending it. While we did find out that most people are interested in giving to charities, we also think it is important for us to leave this choice to each individual so it has a more positive impact.

We are happy to announce that, moving forward, our employees will be given the choice of getting a gift card for themselves or donating their reward (or a part of it) to a charity of their choice.

5) More diverse habits

Busbud has a multicultural team, which means that each person has different habits and routines specific to their culture and beliefs. While it is inevitable for everyone to adapt and change, it can sometimes be difficult to do so.

One of our projects this quarter was to understand how people from different cultures act and react in similar situations on a daily basis. We also wanted to help our team stay connected by teaching one another a bit more about their coworkers culture and habits. 

We created a survey to learn how people greet each other, how they introduce themselves to a new person, how they say goodbye, etc. We feel like knowing and implementing these simple gestures could make some employees feel closer to home.

With the recent events of the pandemic, our relationships became more distant and some greeting habits had to be avoided. Since life is slowly going back to a new normal, we thought it would be a good time to change our old habits and build new, more inclusives, ones.