On Monday about 150 people from my community came together to help people in Coney Island, NY struggling in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy by preparing 10,000 ready-made meals. This all started Wednesday when I made a phone call to Chris who is the senior graphic designer at Alliant Studios. After we had chatted about the soft launch of my new website he told me that the president of the studio, Kevin Frank, who wanted to talk to me about something. Kevin gets on the phone and goes on to tell me about his morning and how his basement was now dry after Hurricane Sandy, the sun was shining, and he was drinking his morning coffee less than 48 hours after the storm blew through the DC area. He shared with me that he just “didn’t feel right” that so many people in NY and NJ were struggling and here in DC life was back to normal. He then went on to tell me that he was going to do something about it and work with some of his clients to make it happen. Story continued below.
|Fairfax Community Church donated the space complete with tons of windows for natural light–hallelujah! God kicked in some sunshine and fall colors.|
|Some of the generous folks who made this happen. From left: Cat Blakley of Pie Sisters, John Natolly, Owner/operator of the Chick-fil-A at Fairfax Circle, Kevin Frank, President of Alliant Studios, and Alli Blakley of Pie Sisters.|
There’s something you should know about Kevin at this point in the story. First, he likes to dream. Second, he has a strong grasp of the big picture. Lastly, he likes his client relationships to go beyond the project. These are just a few of the reasons I hired Alliant to do my website and branding. You’ll notice my new logo watermarked in these photos.
Kevin and the team at Alliant reached out to some of their clients and found a way to make this happen. It is very cool how he partnered with all of his clients to make it happen. Check it out:
1. Kevin calls Ron at Generosity Feeds, an organization that mobilizes volunteers to make ready-made meals for children in need. Ron tells Kevin that each meal will cost about $1 and that it will take 150 volunteers about 2 hours to prepare 10,000 meals. Great organization, get involved!
2. Next, Kevin calls John who is Owner and Operator at the Chick-fil-A at Fairfax Circle. John agrees to provide snacks before and then feed all the volunteers afterward.
3. Kevin then calls the sisters in Georgetown. No, not the Nuns–but that would have been cool–but Alli, Bear, and Cat Blakely who started Pie Sisters a few years ago. They offered to bring amazing “cuppie” pies (individual size) for everyone.
4. Later, Kevin calls the Pope. But I don’t know where that conversation went. Yes, I am kidding.
Somewhere between Wednesday and Monday about 150 people connected to all of these companies and organizations singed up to volunteer 2 hours of their day and donate 2000 bottles of water, propane stoves, and propane tanks. What did I do in all of this you ask? Take some photos and video and pitch the story to my colleagues at some of the largest news outlets in the country. They didn’t bite but WUSA Channel 9 did show up after the festivities and I was able to hand off my footage to them. I have posted a few of my favorite photos from the event below and the WUSA video is embedded below. This event appears after the 2:30 mark in the video.
Cute kids with a shirt that matches the message are bound to be photographed.
|Ron Klabunde, CEO of Generosity Feeds preps the volunteers.|
|Many little hands contributed as Fairfax County Schools were out for the day. These girls were killing it!|
|These are the crazy awesome folks at Alliant Studios in front of the 10,000 ready-made meals. They took most of the day out of the office to make this event happen.|