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Over the past several months, we have been highlighting a number of Microsoft partners who share in our mission to empower people to achieve more by investing in their local communities and worldwide. Today, we are eager to share the story of how Joanna Sobran, CEO of partner company MXOtech, is creating job opportunities for refugees and helping build a passion for technology and the business world in Chicago and beyond.

Empowering Global Talent and Success

MXOtech is an IT consulting company focused on providing the mid-size market with managed services and customer software development that their clients need to thrive. As a company, MXOtech is affiliated with several different non-profit organizations, all with the intention of investing in the success of their community.

“I’ve been very blessed with a good company and great clients, so we’ve decided to share the wealth that we’ve been blessed with.”

– Joanna Sobran, MXOtech

Joanna’s interest in philanthropy was born from a desire to give back to the community and help empower others with needs greater than her own. When her family immigrated from Poland at the age of 11, Joanna saw first-hand the struggle many immigrants face to overcome the language and cultural barriers they encounter. This experience brought to life the importance of providing job opportunities for displaced and disenfranchised individuals within her community.

MXOtech partners with the non-profit organization Upwardly Global in helping immigrants and refugees rebuild their careers in the U.S. Their programs result in increased income for job seekers, financial support for immigrant families’ civic participation rates, as well as the tools and connections these individuals need to build a healthy professional network.

Fostering a Passion for Technology

As a technology company, Joanna says that it is very important to MXOtech that their philanthropic efforts contribute to growing the technology skills and passions of their community. They work closely with another Chicago-based organization called Mercy Home for Boys and Girls, which helps youth escape poverty, abuse, and neglect. With Mercy Home, MXOtech works to generate awareness of the good the organization is doing in the community and helps teens find internships, jobs, and training to set them up for professional success.

“What we’ve done is create a training program where the kids can come in, without a lot of experience, and build the skills they need to be successful in their careers. Many of them come from underserved communities or lack a college education, but with this program, they can get the real-world experience they need to get ready for working in a professional work environment.”

– Joanna Sobran, MXOtech

In collaboration with a training program called Year Up, MXOtech offers their trainees with the opportunities for mentoring with senior leadership in the company along with the technical training that will make them more valuable as professionals in today’s competitive job market. They work with many first-generation college students as well as many first-generation white-collar workers to develop a passion for work within the technology and business arenas.

Building on Philanthropy as a Core Value

While it’s clear that their many programs are meaningful to Joanna, it’s also clear that philanthropy has been woven into the culture at MXOtech and is considered a core value. This partner company has even implemented a paid volunteer day for all employees of their company to volunteer with any organization of their choice. In this way, Joanna’s team is able to get out into the community and make a difference for a cause they are individually passionate about – with the full support of their employer.

With that support, employees are able to work toward raising up the local community, help individuals have the same opportunities they benefitted from, and give back in a way that is meaningful to them.

How do you see your company focus on giving back to the community? Share your thoughts in the comments below.