Growing the Good: By Adjusting the Sails

Growing the Good: By Adjusting the Sails

Sailing with Albemarle

Albemarle employees across the globe are using volunteerism to make a difference. We asked several Albemarle employees, who use the Albemarle Foundations Volunteer Grant Program, to share how they are making a difference.

A short distance from our plant in Langelsheim, Germany, a water reserve provides cooling water for the plant and recreation for many in the surrounding area. The Wassersportverein Innerstetalsperre, or Water Sports club, has used this area to organize races and offer training and activities for local community members.

Albemarle Employees Brigitte Heinl and Ralph Opitz are both active volunteers with the organization. Offering their skills in sailing and planning to create an environment where families and community members can thrive and learn together.

Since the age of six, Ralph Opitz has been a sailing club member. His passion continues into adulthood, volunteering his time to train adults and youth in sailing. He puts in about 160 volunteer hours almost every year.

Brigitte Heinl isn't too far behind Opitz. She's been active with the organization for 14 years and serves 100 hours a year as a sports administrator for the sailing department. She has organized many regattas and other activities to keep the community active.

"The most important department inside the Wassersportverein Langelsheim is the youth department," said Opitz. "Every year we train young people starting at age 6 to learn water sports. The Volunteer Grants Brigitte and I earned were used to buy a new sailboat for the talented youth sailing group. They often don't have the financial means to buy a boat; that donation allows them to continue training in the sport."

Volunteers exemplify Albemarle's Core Value of Care, as they play a vital role in contributing to the well-being of the communities where they live and work. To honor those who give of themselves and their time and increase their impact, Albemarle Foundation awards volunteer grants of up to $1,000 per calendar year. All eligible participants may request $200 for 15-plus hours of service, $500 for 35-plus hours of service, or $1,000 for 70-plus hours of service, payable to the same or different organizations.


Brigitte Heinl, Quality Control Technician & Ralph Opitz, General Maintenance Supervisor

Volunteer Organization: Wassersportverein Innerstetalsperre (Water Sports Club)