Though its impact has been devastating on the economy and societies throughout the world, the pandemic has placed pre existing issues under an earth-sized magnifying glass, namely how low-income and homeless families need additional support during these times. Recently, the Creative 7 Designs team wanted to do something about these pressing issues that have been affecting families around the world.
It could be easy to develop the mentality that we’re just one small business in the really big world. But it’s important to understand that small actions create big impacts when supporting a cause. While donating to one community in the country might seem infinitesimal, the reality is that every good act counts. This is something every individual needs to understand in order to make a difference. We started in our community, Redlands, and donated to the Family Service Association (FSA).
The FSA is an organization that supports low-income and homeless families in the Redlands and Yucaipa communities. “While we consider our organization a frontline service provider,” the FSA website says, “we are continuing some our crucial and vital services to low-income, homeless, and at-risk homeless families in the region.” These services include emergency support, case management, education, and referrals that focus on helping families become more self-sufficient and prevent homelessness.
Small businesses in the community can support organizations’ increased efforts to support struggling famlies during the economic crises
The FSA has been a longtime website and design client of Creative 7 Designs, but regarding the actual donations, Joseph learned that the local service clubs were hosting a friendly competition to see which club could get the most food donations. In addition to that, he learned that the food pantry at FSA was despairingly low. Joseph remembered his motto “service above self” and decided that if givers gain, this was the perfect opportunity to give.
C7D office administrator and donation-spear header, Lauren, recalls the reaction of the team when Joseph proposed the idea of donating to the FSA. “The entire team was immediately involved,” she says. To avoid donating items that weren’t being accepted, the FSA provided a list of dos and don’ts. Some team members grouped together and planned a trip to the grocery store to get food as donations the next day.
“The funnest part about getting the donations was, of course, being able to grocery shop together as a team,” Lauren says. The act behind helping our community as a business was also enjoyable. “It’s important to support the community that you work in — being a good person is important for the progression of society, in general,” she says. “Knowing that the company we work for is having a share in that progression makes me proud.”
Having a purpose when supporting families during the pandemic makes a difference to everyone
This is more than donating items — it is a personal boost for us. A boost for us to continue to support our communities as individuals and collectively. “I’ve always thought that a business should be a mission,” says Joseph. “There is so much more to life than money.” Our involvement with the Redlands Family Service (also referred to as the FSA) and other nonprofit organizations around the community give us an opportunity to be a business that is on mission. It also gives our team an opportunity to get out of the office and do something that is different than the day-to-day routine and impactful for the community.
The FSA has recently announced the reopening of its Redlands donation center on October 1st, resuming with adjusted donation drop off hours, a limitation of how many bags one donor can drop off, approved items, and additional policies.
For anyone interested in donating to the FSA, whether individually or as a group, the website provides an extensive list of foods and items in which they are in immediate need. This list includes perishable and non-perishable (perishables in efforts to promote healthy families and programs), clothing and shoes, and new hygiene items, in addition to items that they cannot accept. For further details on how you can support, please view their needs page, volunteer page, and donate page.
Lauren also recommends that you plan what you are donating in advance by making a list of items, the amount of each item, and a rough estimate of how much each item (grouped) will be. If you aren’t sure about pricing, and want to be as accurate as possible, looking up item prices online prior to making the trip is also beneficial. It’s also recommended to have more than one person available if you plan to donate several bags. For our trip, one person focused on gathering the inventory while another handled the budget and the other pushed the cart. Designating set roles to each person will make the trip easier to manage.
Though we are a website design and marketing agency, Creative 7 Designs is actively involved in supporting, serving, and providing discounted services to many organizations around Redlands, including the FSA/RFS. Other organizations we enjoy supporting is the Rotary Club of Redlands, Optimist, Kiwanis, Redlands Touch a Truck, Redlands Oktoberfest, Redlands Run, Redlands Bicycle Classic, Music4Health, Vibe Fest, and more.
For us, it’s about making real differences for the real people around us whom we may never personally meet or know.