Market Your Business and Help Others, by Valerie Bittner, Model, Actor, Voice Artist

Valerie Bittner 2013

“Hundreds of charities are searching for special businesses to help them in their cause,” says David Frey, President of Marketing Best Practices Inc. On Friday, May 17, 2013 I had the pleasure of helping Scott Gingold, owner of Computer Troubleshooters of Bethlehem and others organize a Food Revolution Day, which benefited Second Harvest Food Bank of Lehigh Valley.

“Did you know there are more then 67,000 children in the surrounding six counties who receive free or reduced breakfasts and lunches? Did you know when school’s out, these children don’t have access to those meals? Each week that’s an extra ten meals per child for a family that may already be struggling to put food on the table,” Scott shared with me at a networking event. He recently had lunch with Sharon Alexander, Development Coordinator for Second Harvest and was obviously touched and motivated to do something. Scott said he would like to host a networking event that benefits Second Harvest. I said I would be happy to help in any way I could.

Food Revolution Organizers

Food Revolution Organizers

What Scott didn’t know is that I was once one of those children getting free meals at school. What an incredible opportunity he gave me to give back! As a business owner, I am constantly being asked to help out in someway to charitable causes and events. Offering my assistance or skills to a charity I believe in makes giving my time almost effortless. Having limited volunteering my time to six charitable causes a year has allowed me to help out with causes I feel passionate about and leave me with enough time to run my business. “Charities today understand you as a business owner have a secondary purpose for participating in their cause and are experienced at helping you receive a return on your charitable investments,” says Dave Frey in his online article Charity Marketing, “Everyone hasa potential affinity with a charitable organization. Hundreds of charities are searching for businesses to help them in their cause. Find them and lend your helping hand.”

Never one to let any moss grow under his feet, I received an email from Scott Gingoldthe following week to join him and others for a planning meeting. It just so happened I also received an email from Food Network promoting Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Day. For those of you not familiar with celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and his Food Revolution, Jamie created a grassroots campaign to fight obesity by teaching children about food and encouraging people to cook at home with real ingredients. With part of Second Harvest’s mission to be a source of education and training for people working to improve availability and nutrition to those in need, I suggested we join Food Revolution’s Global Day of Action on May 17, 2013.

Ours was a simple plan: a networking event with guest donations to benefit Second Harvest. I along with Scott, Sharon from Second Harvest and Dave Reeman, Movement of Performance and Healing called tent, table and chair rentals, potential vendors & sponsors. Once we had enough confirmations to call it an event we created an email and social media campaign to promote it.

As host, Scott Gingold and Computer Troubleshooters erected a tent in their parking lot. The neighboring business generously offered their lot as over flow. Donald Flad of Sam’s Club offered tables & chairs. Karen Malachowski of O’Brien’s Moving & Storage donated a truck and driver to transport our donations to Second havest. Martelluci’s Pizza in Bethlehem made enough salad to feed 400 people and Stewart Kessler of Royal Gourmet Foods showed up we plenty of pulled pork sandwiches for everyone. Our vendors, Lisa Drew Health & Wellness, Mike Lichtenberger, Sherry Raimundo, Alex Gingold ,Twin Pond, Dave Reeman and Maddy Joseph, MD offered free samples. We also appreciated time volunteered by Tracy Yatsko and Shana Kay.

I was humbled to see a conversation at a networking event turn into hundreds of people working together to help other less fortunate right here in our community. Take advantage of a charity partnership and market your business while helping out a worthy cause.

ValerieBittner.com

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Special Thanks to:

Scott Gingold, Owner, Computer Troubleshooters of Bethlehem: http://ctbethlehem.com

Sharon Alexander, Development Coordinator, Second Harvest ofLehigh Valley and Northeast, which, distributes food and groceries to more than 69,000 people each month. Member agencies include emergency food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, child care, rehabilitation and senior centers.

http://www.shfblv.org

David Frey, Charity Marketing: Growing Your Business Through Charitable Giving, http://www.frugalmarketing.com/dtb/charity.shtml

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