More than 30 employees of Westport-based Terex Corporation recently took a break from their office routines to work at Norwalk's Open Door Shelter, where they prepared and served three separate lunches to the shelter's more than 200 clients.

The Open Door Shelter serves three meals a day, seven days a week, to people struggling to make ends meet.

"Without the support and dedication of volunteers like our friends at Terex, our work would not be possible," said Frank Concepcion, director of the facility's volunteer programs.

Terex Corp.'s latest volunteer effort represents a growing trend among companies which recognize the importance of corporate social responsibility. Terex's Beth Pelican and Lee Alvarado coordinated the effort on behalf of the company, together with United Way's Community Engagement Team.

"We see this as a wonderful opportunity for our employees to work side-by-side for the betterment of the community," Pelican said. "They truly enjoyed the experience, and found it to be very rewarding. In fact, many of our volunteers have asked if we can do this more often."

In addition to offering employees the chance to lend a helping hand in their community, Terex Corp. and a number of employees provided funding for the meals.

"A project like this is really a win-win for everyone involved," said Cheryl Bieling, United Way's Manager of Community Engagement. "The shelter clients clearly benefit, the company benefits from the boost in employee morale, and the community-at-large benefits. This project in particular supports United Way's work in the local Norwalk community, where we are preparing with others to unveil the 10-Year Plan to End Homelessness."