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Making a Difference 1 Percent at a Time
While 2020 was a challenging & unusual year in many ways, here at Odyssey we were fortunate to continue honoring the firm’s corporate giving policy. This policy is based on the Pledge 1% program and was further refined using Nicholas Kristoff’s, of the New York Times, annual giving guide.
Each year we ask our team (management excluded) to choose the organizations to which we give, similar to Mr. Kristoff’s approach. We’ve further modified the Pledge 1% model from 1% of profit to 1% of the firm’s total revenues. The actual contribution is made by the firm’s owners. We want to highlight the organizations selected by the Odyssey team this year for our pledge below and share why each team member chose them.
“I chose the Alzheimer’s Association because my great-grandfather had Alzheimer’s and it is a horrible disease that I believe can be cured in the near future with the right funding and awareness.”
“The Brain Injury Association is for my brother who passed away in June of 2015 unexpectedly from a traumatic brain injury.”
“Dog Star Rescue is a volunteer-run organization, based in Hartford, CT that works with shelters in the South as well as New England states to save loving dogs who have lost their way. They provide medical and emotional support for these dogs and have placed over 3,000 dogs in loving homes. Additionally, Dog Star has a program which seeks to match deserving veterans with the perfect canine companion at low or no cost to the veterans as well as provide training and low-cost veterinary services (through Dog Star’s veterinary partner).”
“In the developing world there are still millions of children who die from preventable causes. It is estimated that half of these preventable deaths are related to hunger and malnutrition. Feed My Starving Children provides fully prepared (just add water) meals to children around the world. Using volunteers to pack the meals, they can deliver meals around the world for an average cost generally less than $0.30 per meal.”
“For many people in the world the basic needs of food and water are difficult to come by. Fight for the Forgotten seeks to build wells and develop sustainable agriculture for the Pygmys in the Congo with the goal of breaking the chain of poverty, suffering, and slavery they currently endure. The charity is a very small organization that dedicates as much as possible to this goal without excessive overhead.”
“Kidsave International is a U.S. based organization, which focuses on finding families for older children (ages 7 to 18) who are in institutional care in the US or overseas. Kidsave organizes events which allow children to meet potential host families in fun and safe environments, arranges meetings between host families and children, and provides support for the children and potential adopters throughout the entire adoption process and after adoptions are completed. Additionally, Kidsave matches children with mentors to ensure these children have an adult in their lives who they can trust regardless of whether they ultimately find an adoptive family.”
“No Kid Hungry is an organization working to end childhood hunger. They do this through a number of methods: including funding school breakfasts and summer meals, working with legislature to improve existing programs and teaching people how to shop to make their money go further. I chose No Kid Hungry as my organization because I think the work they are doing is so important, especially now when so many are struggling. All the charities we chose are great and there are so many important causes, but it’s good to know that while kids can’t help their situation, they’re still being fed.”
“Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.) Rescue’s mission is to permanently eradicate child sex trafficking through coordinated rescues, recover planning and education. After hearing the story of their founder, Tim Ballard, who left his position in Homeland Security to establish the organization, I knew I had to help in some form because child slavery is a very real issue that has long gone unnoticed. As a mom, I can’t stomach the reality that there are innocent children being targeted, abducted and abused with no one there to help them. If anyone is interested in learning more about them, you can watch their videos here.”
“The Adirondack Scholarship Foundation provides tuition assistance to children/families for the Pok-o-MacCready Camps in the Adirondacks. While I never went to the camp personally, it is very close to the location my husband and I have been visiting for years.”
“World Central Kitchen has been providing meals to communities after disasters around the globe for many years. When the pandemic hit earlier this year, they partnered with restaurants in over 400 communities across the country to not only provide tens of millions of hot, pre-packaged meals to those in need, but to help support those affected in the restaurant industry as well – providing work for chefs and support staff whose industry has been decimated by stay-at-home orders, and generating revenue to help keep these small businesses afloat. I think the work WCK does is incredibly important, but by partnering with independent local restaurants and companies, the impact of this charity is that much more profound and far-reaching.”
“World vision helps communities in the developing world by sponsoring children to go to school and have enough to eat. They also support communities in the developing world by digging clean water wells and helping local communities develop their own sustainable agricultural systems to provide for their own needs for the long term.”
We hope by sharing this that it will shed light on these organizations and their incredible work and encourage others to join the Pledge 1% movement. Our commitment, even from a small firm, has helped make a lasting impact in our community and our world. Even if only one more firm, company or person joins us in taking the pledge – it will make all the difference.