One of the things that make working at Nationwide so special is our long history of giving back to the communities where our employees live and work. It's the heart of our company, and our employees are passionate about helping others. This tradition of community involvement is a part of the experience of working here.
Each year we contribute approximately $1.4 million to local charities, along with thousands of hours of volunteer time from our employees. There are opportunities to build a house, give blood, teach children, feed the hungry, collect toys, clean roads, or join a board, to name just a few. You will have an opportunity to give back in a number of ways and enrich your work/life experience.
The cornerstone of our community involvement is our long-standing partnership with community organizations. We are a leading supporter of the annual Valley of the Sun United Way campaign and regularly achieve high employee participation rates. We have a partnership with St. Mary's Food Bank, the world's first food bank, where our employees pack and sort food each month during the company's St. Mary's Day. Each year, more than 300 employees volunteer more than 1,000 hours during our St. Mary's Days.
Employees also rally behind our annual holiday gift drive when generous gifts are collected and distributed to community organizations. In addition, our casual dress Fridays are another opportunity for employees to support worthwhile causes.