Poking fun at controversy is often good for business, as a Pennsylvania candy maker has just discovered. Making fun of the Patriots’ “Deflategate” scandal, Sarris Candies of Canonsburg just auctioned off a deflated chocolate football.
As Sarris said on Friday, “What started out as an internal little joke ended up picking up momentum and excitement. It’s going to a good cause, so that’s the best thing.” He originally posted the football on Facebook as a joke and didn’t intend to sell it.
He named the ball the Bradie ball (in reference to Tom Brady but with a different spelling so as not to get into trouble). The Facebook caption read, “Net weight 13 lbs … Oops! We meant 11.2 lbs.”
Richard Bazzy spent $5,000 on the package which included the deflated chocolate, two regular shaped chocolate footballs and two chocolate helmets. In total, $20,000 was given to the Dollar Enery Fund which provides utility help for poor residents. As Bazzy said, “It doesn’t get any better when you can poke fun at an AFC rival while knowing that you are also helping families in need. We expect to display the football in one of our dealerships with pride.”
Many institutions and organizations create partnerships with non-profits and it is always heart-warming when they do so. One such organization, Oasis Management, where Seth Hillel Fischer is the Chief Investment Officer and portfolio manager, has close ties to the Karen Leung Foundation. As a founding sponsor of the nonprofit, Oasis has invested time and money in this Foundation.
The Karen Leung Foundation was founded in memory of Oasis trader Karen Leung. She died in October of 2012 at the age of 35 after fighting metastatic cervical cancer. The Foundation was founded to help fund and promote education, prevention, research and treatment of gynecological cancers.
Oasis Management, with Seth Hillel Fischer, has been a proud partner in many of their activities. They were a partner in the inaugural Karen Leung Memorial Investor Conference that was held in Hong Kong in June of 2013. All proceeds from the conference went to the Foundation. They partnered again in 2014 at the investor conference in Hong Kong where there was an exciting new partnership between the Karen Leung Foundation and the Sohn Conference Foundation.
Leung was only 34 and engaged when she was diagnosed with cervical cancer in November of 2011. Before she died, she expressed that she wanted to raise awareness among Hong Kong women and girls about gynecological cancers so that others might have the information to prevent cancer and detect it in the early stages. Certainly, Oasis Management is proud to be part of the Foundation and to help to keep Leung’s memory alive.
Adam Sandoval is on a mission. He’s got his Harley Davidson and his dog, Scooter, at his side and he’s going to stop at every Harley Davidson dealership in the United States this year. That’s 696 stops – all to raise money for kids who have lost parents at war.
As he said, “I never was a soldier, I never served. Always wanted to, and I regret never serving.”
So now, as a way to give back, he’s giving 100% of the money that he raises to the cause. As he said, “That’s my donation, my time my energy…I’m paying for the campaign. Everybody else is paying for money to help the kids, and together we’re doing something that I’m very proud of.”
He said, “Everything I live on fits on a motorcycle. And I’m richer than I’ve ever been in my life.”
Read more about Adam and follow his journey as he crosses the country.
With its work in helping ex-Horace Mann students heal from the abuse they encountered while in the school, earlier this month a group of concerned individuals assembled at Hilltop Cares Foundation’s kick-off event. Attendees included: students, parents and administrators. Chair of the foundation, Marjorie Kaufman, pointed out that the principal part of the work was supporting those individuals who were abused many years ago at school.
A discussion took place at the event on the mission of the organization with school head Dr. Tom Kelly and event participants. Also in attendance was Lisa Moreira, Director of Institutional Research and Enrolment Management.
One particular advantage of the foundation is that it was established independently from the school. This renders it more accessible to school alumni and survivors. As Kaufman pointed out:
“There are significant negative sentiments held by some alumni in the wake of the revelations of sexual abuse at the school. As an independent entity we don’t get involved with that at all, and we are here to directly help people that were hurt.”
The event was particularly timely since the Christmas season places much emphasis on giving back. Indeed, the Horace Mann community feels very much like “an extended family to many people,” as they stand by those who were abused and offer support.
A benefit event for Hilltop Cares is scheduled for May of 2015.
A staggering $850,000 was raised last weekend to support research, education, clinical staff and patient support services at the Hoag Hospital. The Foundation’s 48th annual Christmas Carol Ball included over 520 people who came to the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort & Spa in Dana Point on December 6th. The event included live music, auctions, food and even a performance by figure skaters on an ice rink that was set up inside the ballroom.
The event chairs, Tracy and Roger Kiwan, in a note on the Hoag Hospital Foundation website wrote,
“Tracy and I are honored to be serving as Chairs for the 48th Annual Christmas Carol Ball, benefiting Hoag. In considering attending the 48th Annual Christmas Carol Ball, please know this is not only a special way to celebrate the holiday season, it’s an opportunity for us all to show our support for Hoag, one of our treasured community assets. As health care delivery continues to evolve, community support is more important than ever to assist Hoag in remaining an innovative health care leader. Should you be considering underwriting this lovely event, please note that all gifts of $10,552 or above can be designated to the Hoag institute or area of your choice. Thank you in advance for your support of Hoag. Your participation will make an impact on the success of this year’s event.”
American Truck Showroom employees have opened up their hearts to host a Thanksgiving food drive for a local children’s shelter in Gulfport, Mississippi. Donations were accepted until yesterday and were delivered at that time. The American Truck Showrooms department that is found to have donated the most items will then be rewarded with a company lunch.
When describing the same food drive last year, Ralph Cox, the customer service representatives’ manager for American Truck Showroom said, “They had shown us the empty cupboards and refrigerators from where they simply ran out of food and the food bank was dry. They were being subsidized by the county jail until their donations came in. The food was bologna meat (three different colors), cheese singles and a few apples.”
Today is National Philanthropy Day. It is a day set aside by the Association of Fundraising Professionals to recognize the incredible contributions individuals make to the philanthropic community. In line with this, we thus today take the opportunity to recognize the contributions of two businessmen who have taken time to give back to the community.
Not-for-profit businessman Ed Sayres was recently appointed as Chairman and CEO of the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council. Boasting four decades of experience in the animal welfare industry, Sayres – who is also Principal of Sayres Consulting (a nonprofit management consulting and philanthropic advisory firm) – is passionate about responsible pet ownership, pet sale bans and more. Indeed, it was Sayres who, in his work at the ASPCA, introduced and developed the no-kill animal shelter model he implemented while working at the San Francisco Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SF/SPCA). In terms of his business acumen, Sayres can be proud of the fact that when most nonprofits faced major challenges to keep afloat in the recession, the ASPCA still received substantial donor support, while expanding.
Moving on to something quite different but still with the same attitude of giving back, a week-and-a-half ago churchgoers skipped their services to help out in the neighborhood. Northview Christian Church members raked leaves to help those not up to the task. Around 280 volunteers last Sunday participated in this endeavor, working on 20 projects as a way of enhancing the neighborhood. As Pastor Dave Choutka pointed out, it is a way to “love our community.”
There are many ways that businessmen, students, the unemployed and indeed anyone can get involved in giving back to the community.
On Saturday, November 8th The International Myeloma Foundation will have its 8th Annual Comedy Celebration at The Wilshire Ebell Theatre. They will present Celebrity Autobiography which features celebrity memoirs acted out on stage by an all-star cast. The show won a 2009 Drama Desk Award and a 2010 Bistro Award.
Hosting the event will be Ray Romano of “Everybody Loves Raymond” and “Parenthood.” Performers include Danny DeVito, Lucy DeVito, Patricia Heaton and others.
All proceeds from the event will benefit the Peter Boyle Research Fund and will support the Black Swan Research Initiative.
The event will take place at The Wilshire Ebell Theatre & Club at 743 South Lucerne Blvd in LA.
In a fascinating new study, Chattanoogans came out as extremely generous. The study of tax filings released Monday showed that Chattanoogans on average donated at least 50% more of their disposable income to charities and religious groups than did the typical American.
Those in Chattanooga think there are easy explanations, but it’s still a bit of a mystery why these numbers are what they are. As Pete Cooper, president of the Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga said, “Chattanooga is a generous town and continues with a culture of giving from people of all income levels. Among the wealthy, there has long been a philosophy of charitable giving which helped establish some of the state’s biggest foundations here decades ago. But among low- and middle-income families there is also a commitment to giving because I think our citizens recognize the needs around them and they understand where their gifts go and help out.”
As Eva Dillard, president of the Chattanooga United Way said, “Obviously, during the recession, we had some struggles but Chattanooga has always been known for its philanthropy. Even people that don’t have a lot of money here are willing to give what they can to help others who have less or are in some need. We’ve found as we grow the engagement of people with our work, our giving goes up.”
In general, the highest share of income is donated in Utah and in the South. The least charitable states were New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont. The Chronicle report, that looked at IRS returns, found that Americans who earn $200,000 or more actually reduced their giving by 4.6% from 2006 to 2012. Those earning less than $100,000, however, increased their charitable giving by 4.5% in the same period.
Some people really put their money where their mouth is, and others put their bodies there as well. Bob Barnes, who is VP and head of special assets for DeLand, Florida bank, decided to to 20,000 push-ups last month to raise money for the Neighborhood Center of West Volusia. This center provides food and shelter for people in need. He called it “Big Bad Bob’s Push-up Challenge” and he helped to raise $7300 for the community center.
He had more than 100 contributors and he did 645 pushups a day, every day, for a month.
Of course, he didn’t tell his doctor what his plans were when he was diagnosed with pneumonia on the first day of his challenge. As he said, “I didn’t tell my doctor what I was planning, because she would have said no. So I started, and I just knocked it in the dirt.”
Barnes kept a log as he did the pushups and he updated his supporters on his progress. He did not accept any cheating from himself, as he said, “no cheating — all the way down and all the way to the top.”
58 and clearly in amazing shape, Barnes is not planning a repeat of this next year. He hopes next year to reminisce about his accomplishment from this year. And he explains that he really ended up doing a bit more than 20,000. As he said,
“I did a little more because I wanted to make sure my math was right. Being a banker, my calculations don’t always add up.”