We strive in our business every day to help people transform experience and space. We want to take our passions to the next level for community betterment by focusing our deep relationship with customers in the areas in which we live, work and play.
Transform Community is a program we designed to foster collaboration and encourage support of local initiatives that strengthen communities. Throughout the year, our account managers and marketing and product development teams organize local community service opportunities bringing to life part of our company’s mission to transform spaces and human experiences.
Patcraft has historically been known for offering great service and valued partnerships with clients. Transform Community is intended to nurture those relationships, bringing communities together for greater impact.
“Being actively involved in our communities is a passion of mine. It is not just about giving back. It is about connecting with our community and those around us,” says Austyn Ball, digital and communications specialist.
Here are a few highlights from our 2020 Transform Community events.
On Halloween, Resilient Fabrication Manager Dustin Barrett, Client Engagement Manager Elissa Moore, and Communications Manager Tara Currier, participated in Bartow Backpack Buddies 5K. Barrett took home first place in his age group, and was 13th overall out of 665 runners. Since 2010, Bartow Backpack Buddies has provided children from food-insecure homes that attend one of the local school systems with weekend meals throughout the school year. Through the support, donations and time provided by local corporations, civic groups, churches and individuals, bags are packed weekly with kid-friendly, non perishable food and provided to students to take home every Friday. Currently, over 1,100 students from two local school systems take part in this program each week. Since 2017, the Downtown Cartersville 5K has served as a fundraiser for the program, drawing several hundred participants annually, with all proceeds going to support Backpack Buddies.
Our DC account managers, Erin Kelly, Nathan Neri, Rob Shank and Nena Goozner and their Regional Vice President, Angie Gilp worked together this year to support their community in a new way. In years past, this team has held a tradition around the holidays for the whole team to get together and spend a day or two hand dipping, decorating, and bagging pretzel sticks as holiday gifts. It's become very well known and something that their customers look forward to receiving each year. In light of what's going on in the world, this team thought it would be best to focus their efforts in a different direction and spend that time putting together a canned food drive for Shepherd's Table, a local charity. The team put together a list of items Shepherd's Table was in need of and dropped these off to their customers in the area so they could collect items in their own boxes. Each list included a QR code that linked to the organization's Amazon wish list which would allow people to scan the code quickly and bring them right to the items in need. Participants were able ship supplies straight to Shepherd's Table in just a few clicks. A large amount of Shepherd's Table items have already been purchased and the team hopes to see even more donations come in. "It's been really nice to see the outcome from all of our hard work over the past few months. I think 2020 has been a lot about finding the positives in a whirlwind of negatives, and while we didn't get to do our fun pretzels this year, we still get to bring joy to people just in a different way," says Erin Kelly.
In December, our product development and marketing team members also volunteered with Marietta Must Ministries Toy Shop. VP Marketing Jeff West, Marketing Manager Patty Jafolis, Marketing Director Kieren Corcoran, Communication Specialist Austyn Ball, Product Designer Amanda Hopkins, Marketing Coordinator Carlene West, Graphic Designer Lauren Halbrooks and Marketing Coordinator Sara Richards, committed 5 hours to work in the Toy Shop. Our team volunteered in multiple areas including checking in participants to ensure all were healthy and safe to enter the building, assisted shoppers in finding toys for their children and checked out to help load the toys into cars. This was a great experience for our team to help the community and spend time together while doing it. “I really enjoyed working at the toy shop because it was very heartwarming to see all of the generous donations from the community and to see how excited the families were to be able to provide a great Christmas for their families,” says Sara Richards.
Wisconsin Account Manager Joni Juergens co-chaired Sole Hope again this year. Although they may not be able to donate as many shoe kits this year due to difficulties raising funds, Joni still commits her time to this charity. Joni also worked on Food For Kidz for the 15th year. This also looked much different from other years because they were unable to hold a big event with hundreds of volunteers in one location. However, they still successfully made 7500 meals. Food For Kidz also raised money to support the local school district’s free and reduced lunch program. The schools have not been open, which means they do not get Federal funding for free and reduced meals but those students and their families still need the food. Food For Kidz raised money to keep this local program going through the rest of the year. “Volunteering looks very different this year, but it is still really important to me and my family,” says Joni.
Scott Martin, Indiana Account Manager, and his family started a local youth baseball travel team 2 years ago when his son was six years old. Scott says, “the first year we played mostly seven year olds teams and we went 0-10-1. It was rough getting six olds to focus.” Fast forward to this year and his team has been 18-13 and placed runner up in the last two tournaments. Seeing the kids get better over the last two years is what Scott enjoys the most. He admits that at times it’s been stressful to commit to extra work but he says it is worth all the time he has put into helping his team. “This year with COVID restrictions I feel like the baseball fields have been an escape for me and a place where we can give back to the youth in our community,” says Scott.
Georgia Account Manager Kenny King has continued to volunteer for Boy Scouts of America for the last four years as an assistant Scoutmaster and as an Eagle Scout Advisor. The Boy Scouts of America is one of the nation’s largest and most prominent values-based youth development organizations, providing programs for young people that build character. Kenny guides many young adults to reach their goals of becoming an Eagle Scout.
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