Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Amazing Race

Two posts in one day! ::Gasp! But this was such an amazing day and I couldn't wait to share. In May our shareholders did an amazing race on their retreat and when they came back to share we wanted to do it too. We decided instead of donating our blue jean Friday money every month we would pool it so we could do something at the end of the year and we also decided to forgo our Christmas party and use the money to give back. Luckily for us, our CFO who organized the first Amazing Race is in our office so she helped coordinate this one.

So today 9 teams visited over 19 organizations giving funds, shopping wish lists, participating in activities and all while having a wonderful time. My team went to the Senior Center and did an exercise/bone strengthening class that was truly phenomenal. I think I am going to have lady come do a class in our office. Our second task was to buy gift cards for kids in group homes who are also one of my favorite audit clients. They use cards to give the kids when they go "home" for the holidays to make sure they get a meal. Fast food may not be the best but it is better than nothing. We were also able to bless them with the copy machine we replaced today. We received our final clue and it was $50 to spend how we wished. We gave $20 to the young man we met in the group home and he was so touched, but not as much as we were to meet him. We took our remaining $30 to buy cat litter and cat and dog food for the animal shelter. (Don't worry dad, we bought Fresh Step!!!! for $7.96!)

Several of our groups were able to negotiate deals with the stores they bought from. One restaurant we went to wished he had known we were coming in and he would have had gift certificates that were special to his store instead of franchise cards that he would have donated so we could spend more in other places. He told us if we do it again to let him know so he could help out too. We all gathered back at the office for dessert and to share all of our stories. It was totally a success and it sounds like we want to do something in the summer time again. As an extra surprise 4 of us won the prize of getting an additional $75 to donate to the group of our choice. I was very excited to be one of those people. You can bet that I am going to direct my funds to some more gift cards for those kids.

The non-profit organizations in the area do such wonderful work for so little and there were a few tears shed by co-workers today. It may be the season of giving, but today really opened our eyes to the needs of these groups throughout the year when people aren't thinking about these groups and the people they serve.


ksuJennyP said...

Volunteering is so rewarding.