Have you heard about purpose-driven companies, those that have built their culture and their brand around a cause and a mission?
We’re one of them and we find that people often look at us blankly when we talk about the concept. Well, here’s where we demonstrate for all to see how we live our values and share our cause in our community.
We threw a big party in our back yard a couple of weeks ago, an annual event we call the Do Good Fest. We had four amazing bands, including Guster and the Adam Ezra Group, on a stage at the bottom of the hill. And 7,000 people came to dance to the music, enjoy the food and fireworks, and have fun with their families.
We paid for the whole thing and we didn’t charge any admission. But we did ask for a $20 parking fee. All of the proceeds from the parking went to Branches of Hope, the cancer patient fund at our local hospital.
This is the fourth year we’ve done this and over that time we’ve helped raise $93,000 for these cancer patients. You see, the money doesn’t go to the hospital. We’ve already supported Central Vermont Medical Center many times over the years, including helping to build the National Life Cancer Treatment Center.
No, this money goes to Branches of Hope, a fund that gives money directly to patients who might be struggling to pay their heating bills in the winter while undergoing cancer treatment. Or they might be out of work while they’re being treated and can’t afford the gas to get to the hospital or the doctor’s office.
There are a lot of basics that we take for granted when we’re healthy. But a cancer patient’s financial health can be jeopardized when he or she has to take time off work to recover.
We know a thing or two about financial health, so this cause fits perfectly not only with our corporate values to Do good. Be good. Make good. It also aligns beautifully with our vision to bring peace of mind to everyone we touch and our mission of keeping our promises.
That’s what we mean when we say we’re driven by our purpose, our mission, our cause. These aren’t buzz words, at least not around here. This is the way we want to interact with each other, our neighbors and our customers.
We’ve also come to realize that part of our cause is to live these values out loud. We tell people about some of the good we do in the community because as a corporate citizen with the ability to do this, we can set an example.