Welcome to “The Good Stuff”, where we highlight positive news and ways that NAED employees and member companies go above and beyond to give back to their communities! If you have some “Good Stuff” that you would like to share with tED, find out how below.
Today we’re looking City Electric Supply.
BOCA RATON, Fla. — City Electric Supply (CES) is a national partner of Make-A-Wish®. Team members across the country jump to the challenge each year to raise money for the organization, coming up with unique ways to get people involved. Recently, CES National Solutions Division team members decided to raise money for the organization in a new way: A Spartan Race.
It all started with an idea at a team dinner when CES Vice President of Operations Gary Smith decided it was time to find a new exciting way to fundraise for those in need.
“We thought it would be fun and challenging to do something different,” said Smith. “I had this epiphany idea of a Spartan Race…and the team was excited about it.”
“What started as a dinner amongst colleagues turned into something much bigger,” said Social Impact Manager Karen Gray. “The National Solutions Division discovered a clever way to raise funds for Make-A-Wish and strengthen team relationships that will last a lifetime.”
Regional Sales Manager Amber Headley, who was on board from the jump, spearheaded the event. The team decided to head to the coastal town of Boca Raton, Florida. Twenty-four CES members signed up for the event, plus another 15 to 20 people showed up to support.
“Even people who thought they weren’t athletic enough wanted to do it for the cause,” said Headley. “Some CES team members and their spouses even lost up to 20 pounds to prepare for the event. The team building that went on with this was phenomenal. So, it was a win-win.”
The team was full steam ahead—planning began with logistics, and that meant planning and training for the race and assigning employees into groups.
Next was raising the money to make it happen. CES created different levels of sponsorship with varying benefits, including social media posts and sponsor names on the shirts worn in the race. The planning took less than six months from that initial dinner conversation, and the team raised a total of $31,500.
“Being able to raise this money and have our vendors support us shows the relationship we have with them,” said Amber.
The team decided early on to raise the money for Make-A-Wish.
“It’s always inspiring to see people rise to a challenge in service of a worthy cause like Make-A-Wish,” said Jared Perry, chief revenue officer at Make-A-Wish America. “We know that wishes have the ability to improve the emotional and physical health of children with critical illnesses, but they wouldn’t be possible without community supporters like CES and its employees.”
“Being able to touch people’s lives through this is a great feeling,” said Smith.
“I hope this inspires others to find unique methods to get involved with Make-A-Wish through activities they are passionate about,” said Karen. “CES Cares wants to thank National Solutions for being torchbearers leading by example and finding a new and different avenue to raise funds.”
The Spartan Race, which lasted about two hours, was more than just a fundraising event: It also helped with team building.
“It was very much of a bonding experience,” said Smith. “Before the race, during the race, and definitely after the race, seeing the team members help each other go through these obstacles physically and from a motivational point of view.”
Five teams, made up of four to five participants of varying ages and abilities, had a team leader to ensure everyone could lift each other up and cross the finish line together.
Leading up to the race, a lot of people were nervous, including myself,” said Smith. “But after everyone did it, they are ready to do it again!”
Not only are the CES members who raced this year ready for next year, but several others are ready to join a team next time. Smith hopes to take the next Spartan Race to the next level to increase participation and raise even more funds.
“It starts with an idea,” said Amber. “Start with that and go from there. If you don’t try, you’ll never get there.”
CES looks forward to making the next Spartan Race even more successful and continuing to give back to Make-A-Wish and other charities across the community.
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