August 9, 2019
Citizens Energy Group and Bowen Engineering have partnered up for a Day of Caring for seven years and continue to choose United Way of Central Indiana for their valuable community service. Both Bowen and Citizens support United Way through giving campaigns and volunteerism.
This year, their joint effort benefitted Christamore House Early Childhood Center. The center hosted between 80-100 volunteers, all collaborating to revamp the Center’s playground and other outdoor areas. Through this Day of Caring, they support children with their early education, when important development begins. We know that providing a safe, loving and nurturing environment and age-appropriate learning experiences are critical factors in ensuring the success of children before they start school.
“Today is very important to Christamore House because it means that we have increased the ability to provide opportunities to the residents of Haughville and the Near Westside,” said La’Toya Pitts, CEO of Christamore House.
Bowen and Citizens have a long history of supporting education and programs for children, and especially share an interest in STEM.
For example, Robert L. Bowen, the company’s founder, and his team helped envision, found, and fund a Purdue/IPS partnership that connected low income students with careers in engineering, technology and science through mentoring, internships, and scholarships.
Continuing Bob’s vision, Bowen Engineering also supports other programs in the community such as Big Brothers Big Sisters, Outreach, Inc., Tindley Accelerated Schools, Women’s Fund/CICF, Ivy Tech and of course, United Way.
“We feel our support of these types of programs that empower young people to reach for their potential & foster personal growth are key to shaping our community into a better place to live and work,” said Doug Bowen, president and CEO of Bowen Engineering.
One way Citizens focuses their commitment to community and education is through their Partnership for Excellence in Research and Learning (PERL) Initiative. PERL encourages graduating students to remain in Indiana, creates professional development opportunities for students, and improves the exchange of industry and collegiate data to better address research, technology, and industry challenges—ultimately resulting in more valuable, efficient, and sustainable business and community solutions. PERL currently has seven partner universities, seven business partners (including Bowen Engineering) and has engaged over 600 students.
“Our Day of Caring with Bowen and United Way is a rewarding project for all of our volunteers,” said Molly Tilka of Citizen’s President’s Office. “The playground is a place where children can develop, as they learn to work together to build a mound of dirt, to take a risk by jumping off the equipment, to negotiate taking turns on swings. Knowing that we will contribute to their learning and growth is very special to all of our volunteers.”
CEG and Bowen need skilled workers, so they are committed to helping develop the talent pool in Central Indiana. That means starting early and being inclusive. Together, they hope to inspire young people, especially young women to pursue careers in STEM.
“It’s important to be present in the community and for kids to see themselves represented. When a young girl sees a woman in a hard hat, she can believe there is a place for her in a STEM career,” said Bowen intern Karly Bronk.
While the weather ordered up a hot day, which means a long, hard day of physical labor, both groups said knowing the playground would contribute to the joy and well-being of children today and in the future makes it all worthwhile. Volunteering is always a rewarding endeavor—and even more so when connecting service to company mission.