“I have a whole different level of commitment now, not just because of the benefits like paid leave and fertility support, but because of the culture of care.”

Nestlé’s Parent Support Policy has only been in place a year, but it’s already making a difference in the lives of employees like Meghan

In 2012, my husband and I began trying to get pregnant. After several unsuccessful years, we decided on In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) but didn’t know how we’d pay for it.

At the time I was employed by another company. My benefits didn’t cover any of the costs of treatment, so we actually talked about launching a Kickstarter campaign to raise money. That’s when Nestlé offered me a full-time job. Shortly after accepting, I learned about the Nestlé Parental Support Policy and the fertility benefits. A major portion of our infertility costs was covered, and we got pregnant on our first round of IVF. It was an amazing feeling! In May, we celebrated the first birthday of our son, Theodore.

My manager was incredibly supportive of our good news. She encouraged me to take the full six months of available leave. My colleagues really stepped up to cover for me, even though four or five of us on the HR floor were pregnant at the same time. My manager’s manager also encouraged me to use the full extent of the benefits as soon as she heard I was pregnant.

My manager was incredibly supportive of our good news, and my colleagues really stepped up for me.

My husband and I are California transplants — I’m from the East Coast and he’s from Utah. When Theodore was born, we began to wrestle with the thousands of miles separating us from our extended family. Thankfully, the time I took with the PSP allowed us to spend time with his grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. When Theodore was three months old, we took him to New Jersey, where my family was able to relish three weeks getting to know him. Afterward, we headed to Utah for three weeks, where my husband’s family was able to do the same.

The PSP has also helped us care for Theodore in the way that suited our needs. My husband and I had planned to enroll in a day care close to home. But during my six months off, we decided that we wanted one of us to be home with our son full-time. So we came up with a whole new plan, all because we had the time to experiment and see what would work best for our family. Now, my husband is a stay-at-home parent.

Because I deal with benefits every day, I always want to make sure every Nestlé employee knows all the benefits available to them. I start by reminding moms about the lactation consultant covered by our company’s insurance. A lactation consultant is available by phone any hour of the day. Mothers often give up on breastfeeding after a period of understandable frustration, but the consultant made a big difference for me.

I enjoy my job, spending time with my colleagues and coming to work every day. But I have a whole different level of loyalty and commitment now, not just because of the benefits the company provides all employees but because of the culture of care.

Learn more about Nestlé’s first year of the Parent Support Policy.