As Commonwealth home office staff and advisors count down the days to a new year, we’re pausing to reflect on our giving back efforts in 2019. Beyond exceeding business milestones and welcoming new faces into our fold this year, Commonwealth’s commitment to philanthropy is something we’re especially proud of. Serving the communities where we live, work, and visit is not just part of our core values, it’s a reflection of Commonwealth’s spirit of indispensable service, too.
In honor of the season of giving, we’ve rounded up 12 memorable moments from this past year of giving back.
Want to keep up with the latest news and views from Commonwealth? Subscribe to the Commonwealth Independent Advisor.
1) Chemo Caps for Kids. Commonwealth’s Waltham home office received a special visit from a nurse at Boston Children’s Hospital for World Cancer Day in February. She came to collect 100 hats knitted by Commonwealth staff and friends as part of our Chemo Caps for Kids program. This homegrown initiative was started in 2009 to help children cope with hair loss caused by cancer treatments. With on-site knitting and crocheting workshops and involvement far beyond our home office, we’ve donated thousands of caps to date.
2) The HOPE Center. Whitesell Financial Group, LLP, of Rapid City, South Dakota, held its first annual chili cook-off fundraiser to benefit the HOPE Center, a local nonprofit that provides a drop-in day center to those living in poverty and without homes. The February fundraiser raised much-needed donations for the center, supporting its mission of providing crucial services like laundry and storage facilities, as well as advocacy and mentoring programs.
3) The Nashville Food Project. Commonwealth’s Business Experience conference in Nashville, Tennessee, gave attendees an opportunity to lend a helping hand to the Nashville Food Project. Advisors and staff participated in preparing balanced meals and snacks for local families in need, rolling up their sleeves to chop, slice, and cook donated food. And we didn’t stop there! In addition to preparing meals, volunteers helped build planting space in the Nashville Food Project’s new community garden plot.
4) Think Pink. Homegrown initiatives like a paint night and a family photo day helped us raise money for the Ellie Fund and the Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
5) Nickel from Nicole. Global Wealth Advisors of Dallas, Texas, held its second-annual volunteer event in service of Nickel from Nicole, a nonprofit started in memory of a local teen who lost her life in a car accident. The organization’s mission is to promote safe driving to teens and their parents. Volunteers put together “nickel cards” that encourage young drivers to tape a nickel to their car’s dashboard as a reminder to drive safely.
6) San Diego Beach Cleanup. Over on the West Coast, Commonwealth’s San Diego office took Commonwealth Cares’ Meaningful May to the beach for a day of giving back with San Diego staff, family, and friends. Our volunteers teamed up with Surfrider Foundation San Diego, a grassroots nonprofit committed to the protection and enjoyment of ocean and beach ecosystems, and San Diego Coastkeeper to clean up one of California’s iconic surf and sun spots, Ocean Beach.
7) Relay for Life. Midwest Financial Group once again sponsored the Lafayette County Relay for Life team, which raised more than $40,000 for one of the American Cancer Society’s marquee fundraising events.
8) Home Base. Part fitness challenge, part pledge drive, members of Commonwealth’s Compliance team held a push-up competition to raise funds for Home Base, a joint program from the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital. With $0.10 pledges for every push-up, a pair of our Compliance employees pressed on in support of the organization dedicated to healing the invisible wounds of war for veterans and their families. In addition, 13 of our Commonwealth teammates—along with friends from our sister firm Advisor360°—proudly participated in the annual Run to Home Base.
9) Conscious Alliance. Commonwealth’s National Conference in October brought together advisors, guests, home office staff, and valued partners for camaraderie, learning, and giving back. At this year’s event held in Aurora, Colorado, volunteers packaged more than 10,000 nutritious dried soup meals for Conscious Alliance. This movement of artists, musicians, food makers, and music lovers has a mission rooted in putting food directly in the hands of children and families in Colorado and throughout the U.S.
10) Padres Pedal the Cause. Inspired by a staff member whose child is currently battling cancer, our teammates from both coasts put their cardio prowess to the test with Padres Pedal the Cause, an event held in San Diego’s Petco Park. Eight volunteers took part, including Joni Youngwirth, managing principal, practice management. The San Diego team ran and biked, raising their heart rates and thousands of dollars for the cause! The proceeds from this event will fund life-saving cancer research projects locally.
11) Adopt-A-Family. For more than 20 years, Commonwealth has teamed up with the Waltham Boys & Girls Club to help brighten the holiday season for local families. This year, we also “adopted” two families from REACH, a local organization that assists families struggling financially as they deal with the effects of domestic violence.
12) The Walker School. Commonwealth’s Marketing team flexed its creative muscles to spark some holiday magic by decorating and stuffing 70 Christmas stockings and gift bags for children and teens staying at the Walker School over the holidays. The Walker School is a nonprofit behavioral health organization located in Needham, Massachusetts, that offers a place of safety and stability for children in crisis.
Keeping the Good Going
The best part? This year-end wrap-up includes only a fraction of all the good deeds done, money raised, and hearts warmed by our community’s commitment to giving back. Keep up with our advisors, home office staff, and friends as we strive to do even more in 2020 by following our charitable organization, Commonwealth Cares, on Twitter at @CommCaresOrg.
Did your firm participate in a giving back initiative this year? If so, what were some memorable moments? How do you plan to serve your community in 2020? Share your thoughts with us below!