Employees at the Warsaw, IN facilities of Milestone AV Technologies have raised more than $5,400 in donations to help local children facing medical challenges. At the same time, employees in Eden Prairie, Minnesota donated 898 pounds of food and $128 for Second Harvest Heartland to fight hunger in the community.
Both fundraising activities were enhanced by incorporating elements of competition to encourage more participation.
The choice to donate to the KC Riley Kids Fund began as a spontaneous competition at the Warsaw facilities last year. The radio station that plays at the facility was hosting a Riley Radio Days fundraising event. Throughout the day, departments donated to the cause and were recognized on the radio. Other departments heard the announcement and joined in by donating as well. The spontaneous competition spurred people to give more.
“We are a very competitive group here, and when it’s for a good cause, that makes all the difference,” said Tarina Agler, human resource supervisor.
The Milestone Community Connections Team, an employee group that guides organizational volunteer and charity efforts, agreed to match up to $2,500 for this year’s fundraiser. This provided even more motivation for the departments in Warsaw. In just under two days, they raised $2,909.30 for a total of $5,409.30.
“In the first year, we were impressed and grateful for the participation of Warsaw employees,” said Mike Bergen, co-founder of the KC Riley Kids Fund. “The second year, we were blown away.”
Back in Minnesota, Milestone employees collected food and funds to help fight hunger as part of National Hunger Awareness Month. To encourage more giving, Milestone held a competition for employees to see what group could create the best sculpture with their donations. The winning entry, as voted on by employees, was a working depiction of an Angry Birds game using Peeps candy as a main element. Games were a running theme with depictions of Plinko and Pac-Man as well. Departments also created a flower in honor (or hopes) of the coming spring, an impressive bridge with lights, and a fully equipped workstation.
“People really get into the competitive aspect of this fundraiser,” said Laurie Englert, vice president of marketing for the Chief brand. “Teams keep their creations top secret until the big reveal date; some even campaign heavily to garner votes, which keeps the momentum going. In the end, it’s all about giving our time and energy to a fantastic local charity to help our neighbors in need.”
This is the third year Milestone AV Technologies has hosted a food drive for Second Harvest Heartland. Employees in the Roseville, Savage and Eden Prairie locations participated.