Special Report: The Charity Issue – Photos of Giving

December 21, 2020

USI Insurance Services

USI Gives Back is a corporate social responsibility program where USI associates give their time and talent to their local communities. Since the program’s inception in 2014, more than 8,000 USI associates have volunteered through Gives Back, impacting nearly two million lives. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, USI was unable to host large-group volunteer events this year. Instead, it extended its 2020 volunteer campaign for the entire summer to give associates additional time and flexibility to choose how to give back individually, in a way that was safe and meaningful to them.

Safety National

When volunteering became challenging due to the pandemic, Safety National did not let that stop it from giving back to the community. It just got a little more creative. This year, it has been able to host its own socially-distanced employee-only Variety Bike Build for under-privileged children and children with disabilities, picked up trash along trails to help the Gateway Greening project, and sponsored and placed wreaths on the graves of fallen U.S. veterans as part of Wreaths Across America. It also made substantial food bank donations and hosted several employee virtual fundraising collections to help various organizations.

CapSpecialty

CapSpecialty’s Hartford office volunteers monthly at Foodshare’s pop-up distribution center. CapSpecialty is a specialty insurance provider for small and mid-sized businesses across the U.S.

Holmes Murphy

Holmes Murphy helped Leave Good Footprints in local market communities. In 2020, the Holmes Murphy Foundation Community Giving Back initiative donated more than $100,000 to nonprofit organizations. This year, Holmes Murphy localized its giving approach, asking employees to choose organizations that align with the Holmes Murphy Foundation giving pillars of Youth Education, Health and Human Services, Arts and Culture, and Diversity and Inclusion. Pictured are members of the Wounded Warrior Project in Denver, Colorado receiving the monetary award.

RPM Insurance, an Acrisure Agency Partner

While 2020 was incredibly challenging for everyone, the RPM rose to the occasion. RPM employees continued to volunteer for Meals on Wheels when so many volunteers stopped delivering back in March, understandably so, due to health concerns. RPM also provided meals to the essential workers at community hospitals and nursing homes through the South Shore Kiwanis Club of Staten Island “Thank you” program and provided more than 130 meals to homebound seniors on Thanksgiving. Now, RPM employees are collecting toys to be gifted to children stuck in the hospital or sick during the holidays, partnering with Kids Against Cancer for this annual project.

Trident Insurance Agency

Each year, Trident Insurance Agency holds a Community Service Day where all 70-plus employees give back to the community. One favorite place to assist is Build Jake’s Place. Jake’s Place creates all-inclusive playgrounds which allow children and adults of all abilities to play and interact together. Volunteers clean up different locations and plant flowers. For those employees who would prefer not to work outside, there are mailings for Jake’s Place, and sometimes, lunches are prepared for the rest of the workers.

Robert Wilkens Insurance Agency

Robert Wilkens Insurance Agency participated in the following for 2020: The Community Chest of Bergen County 2020 Virtual Gala, Gold Sponsor, The Community Chest Winter Dinner Project, Lasagna Mama Project for local neighbors in need, contributed to Habitat for Humanity as a co-sponsor with Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Co., donated to Oasis New Toy and Clothing Drive, and to the Demarest PTO gift card drive. By giving back to the community, employees feel a sense of satisfaction in helping others solve problems, seeing the amazing results that are possible just by coming together as a community and looking out for each other and all of those in need.

Wiglesworth-Rindom Insurance Company

Wiglesworth-Ridom Insurance Company is very proud of its monthly charity referral program. The firm randomly picks a winner from the clients that refer customers to us that month and gives them the opportunity to donate $500 to a charity of their choice. This year, Wiglesworth-Ridom donated $4,500 and intends to donate another $1,500 for the last quarter. The donations support different charities and causes in the community. Over the course of the program, Wiglesworth-Ridom has donated a total of $34,000.

JGS Insurance

Since 2018, JGS Insurance has participated in Operation Sleighbells, a holiday collection for a local non-profit called Family & Children’s Service (FCS). Employees are provided with a child’s name, age and three wishes to fulfill such as pajamas, coats, books and toys. In 2020, the organization had to pivot the way it ran its program, asking for monetary donations so it could purchase gift cards for the children and families. JGS employees rallied together to organize a collection, and JGS agreed to match the donation amount. JGS presented FCS with a check for $4,450 to purchase 178 $25 gift cards.

Higginbotham

This year in response to the pandemic, Higginbotham launched the Higginbotham Helps program to purchase meals from local restaurants and donate them to feed front line workers, first responders and neighbors in need in local areas most challenged by COVID-19. In total, Higginbotham Helps purchased more than 12,000 meals from 38 restaurants in 16 communities. The meals were paid for by grants from the Higginbotham Community Fund, which is 100% funded by donations and pledges from Higginbotham’s employees.

Church Mutual Insurance Company

In May 2020, Church Mutual Insurance Company, S.I. (a stock insurer), created a $500,000 “COVID-19 Protecting the Greater Good Recovery Fund” to address pressing needs throughout the nation stemming from the global pandemic. The funds are distributed through the company’s charitable foundation, CM CARES®. The Fund prioritizes donations to support essential needs provided by 501(c)3 religious, education, nonprofit/human services, senior living and camps organizations that are experiencing increased demand for services and/or supplies caused by the pandemic.

Holmes Murphy

Members of Dream Center, Peoria, show their monetary award from the 2020 Holmes Murphy Foundation Giving Back Program. Dream Center’s mission is to impact individuals and families, starting with kids and youth, in poverty.

Hylant Gives Back

Giving back to the communities it serves is embedded in Hylant’s culture, and the need has been great in 2020. Nationally, as the Red Cross raced to help those displaced by wildfires and hurricanes, Hylant employees and the Hylant Family Foundation responded with more than $50,000 show of caring. Hylant’s United Way drive this year far surpassed prior years with financial commitments in excess of $130,000. In light of the circumstances, more than 30% of team increased their giving for the year ahead. Regionally, Hylant became a founding member of West Michigan’s “100 Businesses That Care,” an organization that annually gives two nonprofits each a $50,000 donation.

Risk Placement Services

As 2020 comes to a close, RPS chose to take a moment together to give back and give thanks by holding a nationwide drive to support Feeding America. The organization split its 80-plus U.S. offices into fundraising regions to compete against each other, and employees volunteered to be champions for their regions. The goal was to fund 100,000 meals, which equated to $10,000 in donations. Within the first week of the drive, RPS had already reached 60% of that goal. Throughout the drive, offices challenged each other to donate meals, hosted touchless food drop-offs and held socially-distanced competitions, like parking lot mini-putt outside RPS’ Atlanta office. In the end, RPS blew its goal and ended up funding 253,575 meals. Plus direct food contributions of more than 5,000 pounds to local food banks.

ProSight Specialty Insurance

At ProSight, employee recognition and charitable giving is combined through its Ambassador Award. ProSight presents this award to employees who embody the company culture of teamwork, mentorship and bringing out the best in each other. Each Ambassador Award recipient identifies a specific charity, and ProSight makes a donation in the employee’s name. Its first Ambassador Award recipient, Angela Zippi, selected Good Grief in Morristown, N.J., as her charity. An organization that provides emotional support for families to grow from loss, Good Grief was a personal choice for Angela as she was a long-time volunteer who helped facilitate the healing process in children. Not only did ProSight make a monetary donation, the company also sent care packages of art supplies.

RightSure

Although 2020 proved to be a difficult time for RightSure to maintain normal community activities such as preparing meals for the homeless, participating in Special Olympics and cleaning up local neighborhoods, employees were able to participate in its regular Ronald McDonald House Chef for a Day Event and give back to the many families who stay at the Ronald McDonald House for much needed relief during a difficult time in their lives.

ProSight Specialty Insurance

Jared Eber, one of ProSight Specialty Insurance’s Ambassador Award recipients, selected the New Jersey chapter of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation (CCF) to receive his donation. CFF holds special meaning for Jared as his oldest brother Scott was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis 20 years ago. Jared saw first-hand the toll this disease took on Scott’s daily life. Conversely, Jared also saw the support his brother received through CCF—so much so that Scott dedicated his time with the organization to help others like himself. ProSight was able to facilitate a donation in Jared’s name.

RightSure

RightSure’s normal charity and volunteer schedules were greatly impacted by COVID this year. Overall, this independent agency was able to conduct only one in-person event prior to March with Ronald McDonald House Chef for a Day Event. The agency held an offsite meeting event in early March to plan for how it would allocate charity dollars and which causes to support. It’s focus shifted from in-person and on the ground events to simply sending funds and offering moral support This image was captured during its annual charity planning event.

Kaplansky Insurance

Kaplansky Insurance will be donating more than $1,000 in medical-grade masks to local medical professionals at Newton-Wellesley Hospital in Newton, Mass. Founded in 1974 and headquartered in Needham, Mass., with 14 locations throughout Massachusetts, Kaplansky Insurance is an independent insurance agency offering a suite of insurance solutions including auto, home, business, life and financial services.

Holmes Murphy

The Battle Within in the Kansas City-area offers services and resources to veterans, first responders, and ER personnel. Pictured, members of The Battle Within display their monetary award from the Holmes Murphy Foundation Community Giving Back initiative. In 2020, the Holmes Murphy Foundation Giving Back initiative donated more than $100,000 to different nonprofit organizations.

TrueNorth

On the afternoon of August 10, the entire state of Iowa experienced a powerful storm system called a derecho, or a “land hurricane,” with sustained winds and damage that, in this case, closely resembled a Category 4 hurricane. In its wake, the storm left 20 counties in a state of disaster. TrueNorth decided to funnel contributions through the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation. Its disaster fund provides rapid-response grants to meet the basic needs of vulnerable populations and adapts to the community’s evolving needs. With financial support from its carrier partners, TrueNorth coordinated a donation to the Greater Cedar Rapids Community Foundation amounting to $150,000.

York International Agency

York International has a history of community involvement with a focus on Westchester County and is a sponsor of the Boys and Girls Club of Mount Vernon Thanksgiving Community Dinner Event. For the past 10 years, York International employees and family members have helped prepare and serve more than 200 meals to club members, as well as the elderly community and veterans. This year, York donated boxed meals to continue the tradition and spirit of the event.

Mackoul Risk Solutions

Mackoul Risk Solutions donated food to the staff of several local hospitals. In addition, the firm donated an iPad to Northwell LIJ Hospital so sick patients/nurses could FaceTime with the families of those patients whose families were not able to visit them. Many food banks in the local area also were running short of food, so Mackoul donated to several orgnanizations, including St. Mary of the Isles Food Pantry, Long Beach High School and Long Island Harvest. Many of Mackoul’s own staff have first responders in their immediate families, so the agency sent food and treats to all to acknowledge and support their work during this time.

Security First Insurance Company

Security First offers employees the opportunity to donate to 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations of their choice and have their donations matched dollar-for-dollar up to $500 per year, per employee. Organizations and initiatives supported this year include: American Cancer Society, Camp Boggy Creek, Halifax Humane Society, Jewish Heritage Festival, Kiwanis Score One for Kids, March of Dimes March for Babies, Ormond Beach Chamber of Commerce, Pace Center for Girls, and Tomoka Elementary virtual 5k run/walk. Most recently, it donated more than $50,000 in technology to meet Osceola and Ormond Elementary Schools and 100 smartphones for Beacon Center, which helps survivors of domestic abuse.

West Bend Mutual Insurance

“A mainstay of West Bend Mutual Insurance’s philanthropic efforts is its biennial golf outing to raise funds for the Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer (MACC) Fund. This September’s event raised $1.15 million, and to date, the event has raised more than $3.7 million for the MACC Fund. Kevin Steiner, president and CEO of West Bend (second from right), presented a check to the MACC at this year’s event. He was joined by West Bend employee Ryan Dove with his wife, Erin, whose twin daughters are cancer survivors, and John McGlocklin (far left), co-founder, MACC. Fund.

Fisher Brown Bottrell Insurance

Fisher Brown Bottrell Insurance (FBBI) participated in a virtual food drive. FBBI raised funds in a Virtual Food Drive in an effort to feed families in Northwest Florida. The food that was purchased with the money raised, was donated to a local food pantry, Manna Food Pantry. Manna has served children (and their families), seniors, and veterans in need of food. FBBI provided 195 healthy meals to people in our community.

LassiterWare Cares

LassiterWare Cares is a charitable foundation 501(c)3 established by and for the employees of LassiterWare Insurance and is also dedicated to improving the quality of life, to those in need, in local communities. LassiterWare employees financially donate through bi-weekly payroll deductions, one-time donations, and adhoc fundraisers. A few to receive gifts in 2020: Five LassiterWare employees suffering an unexpected financial hardship; Bids for Kids Annual Fundraiser for Lake Sumter Children’s Advocacy Center, Leesburg, Fla.; Clean the World, Orlando, Fla.; Key Training Center, Inverness, Fla.; and Clear to Hear PPE, Lake County, Fla.

Risk Strategies

Early this year, Risk Strategies’ Boston office partnered with Building Impact to make “Snowman Soup” packs, filled with hot cocoa, treats, and heartfelt letters for the elderly at Minutemen Senior Services. Risk’s employees were thrilled to participate in an event that benefitted 60 local seniors who have been in isolation during COVID-19. As a bright spot in an often lonely situation, they were thrilled to receive these personalized gifts with their Meals on Wheels dinners.

Gowrie Group

Gowrie Group has issued its annual challenge to the local community of businesses and friends to raise $200,000 to benefit The Shoreline Soup Kitchens and Pantries (SSKP). This year, there are twice as many families in need of food, and food pantries like SSKP have served double the number of people than in previous years. To meet this need, Gowrie Group has also doubled its matching gift to $60,000, of which $30,000 is a personal pledge from CEO Carter Gowrie. Gowrie Group is committed to helping people who are food insecure during these difficult times, and since 2004, has raised more than $1.8 million through this initiative.

Risk Strategies

Since 2007, Risk Strategies’ RSC Foundation has sponsored a region-wide Thanksgiving Fundraiser. What began as a single laundry basket rippled into hundreds of baskets of food for families every year. This year, Risk’s employees donated $148,500 to 38 charities across the country. Soup kitchens, food pantries, and other charities have been struggling with the hardships brought on by the pandemic. Risk Strategies is committed to helping end hunger and is proud of its employees for stepping up to help even more families in need during an especially difficult holiday season. This year, engagement was so high that the Foundation was able to double its match from $37,500 to $75,000, all driven by the generosity of employees from across the country.

Lockton Companies

In 2020, Lockton launched the Lockton Cares COVID-19 Community Impact campaign – a global effort that raised $1,125,124 to support 130 associate-chosen beneficiaries around the world. These organizations continue to fight food insecurity, support healthcare facilities and first responders and provide mental health and social services during the pandemic. During the pandemic, Lockton’s people have donated thousands of personal protective equipment items and given volunteer hours and donations to local organizations. Lockton has a history with United Way and raised more than $1.68 million for United Way this year.

Holmes Murphy

Foundation 2 is a nonprofit human service agency in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, committed to positive youth development, suicide prevention, and helping build a foundation for healthier and stronger families and safer communities for all. Pictured, Foundation 2 members with their 2020 Holmes Murphy Foundation Community Giving Back initiative award. Despite the struggles and hardships many have faced this year, Holmes Murphy localized their giving approach, asking employees to choose organizations that align with the Holmes Murphy Foundation giving pillars of Youth Education, Health and Human Services, Arts and Culture, and Diversity and Inclusion.

Liberty Mutual and Safeco Insurance

Liberty Mutual and Safeco Insurance created the Independent Agent Giving program to champion the charitable work of its independent agency partners. The program gives agents a platform and the financial backing to support nonprofits in their local community. This year, Agent Giving quickly responded to the impacts of COVID-19 with $1 million earmarked for emergency community support grants. In less than two months, it received more than 3,300 nominations from independent agencies aross the country and distributed the $1 million through nearly 150 grants.

Bongiovanni, Sloan & Paradiso

Bongiovanni, Sloan & Paradiso (BSP) Insurance, based in Meriden, Conn., is committed to the Choose Love Movement, a nonprofit inspired by 6-year-old Jesse Lewis, his final acts of love, and his mother’s path of forgiveness after Jesse was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. The organization offers no-cost programs for schools aimed at teaching character development and social and emotional learning. In addition to the agency’s ongoing support, this year, BSP Insurance earned a 2020 Make More Happen Award, including a $10,000 donation from Liberty Mutual and Safeco on behalf of the agency.

Haws Insurance Services

After losing his grandfather to ALS and experiencing the toll the incurable disease takes on individuals and families, the owner of Haws Insurance Services, Jesse Haws, and his wife, Eliza, founded Tossin’ Away ALS. The nonprofit helps patients and families in Arizona create positive experiences and raises funds through its annual cornhole tournament — the bag-throwing game that gives Tossin’ Away ALS its name. In the seven years since its inception, the event has raised more than $115,000 for families and ALS research. This year, the organization raised a record $38,000 during the tournament.

Home Loan Insurance Agency

Challenger Baseball is an organization that is personal for Carma Brown, a personal lines manager at Home Loan Insurance Agency. The Little League program gives kids with developmental and other disabilities the opportunity to participate in organized sports, an experience Brown’s younger brother didn’t have growing up. Brown is the director of Challenger’s Grand Junction division, which has grown to eight teams and an average of 90 players each year. Through her director work and a $10,000 donation from Liberty Mutual and Safeco, Brown continues to foster the Challenger Baseball community.

Alliant Insurance Services

Northwest Harvest is a hunger-relief agency in Washington state. Last year, the Alliant team volunteered in-person, putting together more than 6,000 meal kits. While health and safety concerns have paused volunteering for Alliant, the agency remains committed to supporting Northwest Harvest through donations and other virtual efforts. That commitment earned Alliant Insurance a 2020 Make More Happen Award, which comes with a $10,000 donation to Northwest Harvest from Liberty Mutual and Safeco on behalf of the agency. More than 4,700 meals can be created with that funding, serving more than 450 families.

Strachota Insurance Agency

Strachota Insurance Agency has worked with Michelle’s Place, which is a local resource center for people dealing with cancer. Strachota held events on a boat taking a group of approximately 20 cancer patients (all stage 4) out into Mission Bay cruising around eating, drinking, dancing, singing, laughing, celebrating life, and yes, crying, up until this year due to COVID restrictions. The agency also participates in Michelle’s Place’s cancer walk, where the entire company is invited to join along with their family members to walk as “Team Strachota.”

IMA Financial Group

The IMA Foundation continues to carry on the legacy of its founders by supporting organizations that better the communities where IMA associates live, work, learn and play. In 2020, the Foundation donated a total of $300,000 to nonprofits in the foundation’s giving pillars in its major markets: Dallas, Denver, Kansas City, Mt. Pleasant, Pittsburgh and Wichita. Additionally, the IMA Foundation contributed more than $100,000 to organizations supporting front line responders and those most affected by COVID-19. In addition to these donations, the IMA Foundation raised nearly $120,000 during its fall fundraising events in Dallas, Denver, Kansas City and Wichita.

Pennsylvania Lumbermens Mutual Insurance Company

This year was Pennsylvania Lumbermens Mutual Insurance Company’s 125th year in business, and it was supposed to be a year dedicated to volunteerism. Though the pandemic threw a wrench in the plans for in-person volunteering, after the Cristo Rey Choir performed during PLM’s 125th anniversary dinner in February, the company made a donation. Reinsurance broker partner Guy Carpenter offered to donate $20,000 to the Cristo Rey Choir in honor of PLM’s anniversary, and PLM was able to increase their donation to match the $20,000 for a total of $40,000 to the Cristo Rey Choir this year.

IAT Insurance

IAT’s Human Resources and Marketing & Communications teams volunteering at A Note in the Pocket in Raleigh, helping to process 1,200 pounds of clothes for local children in need. IAT Insurance Group is a privately owned, specialty insurance company providing property, casualty and surety products for niche markets. IAT goes to market through eight business units – Commercial Transportation, Specialty, Programs, Inland Marine, Excess Casualty Mid-Market, Reinsurance, IFIC Surety and a newly formed Management Liability division.

Ansay & Associates

Ansay & Associates supports the communities in which its employees live and work through a variety of different programs. Each employee receives four paid days to volunteer their time in the community at a non-profit of choice. This year, each employee received $100 to use to partake in a local fish fry or other take out/delivery of choice. Many employees selected local businesses, and some chose to donate their $100 to the organization directly. Lastly, each regional office location was provided $1,000 this year to give back to a charity or event local to their regional/community offices.

TWFG Insurance

Over the past 20 years, TWFG has supported many organizations, including: Abundant Harvest; American Heart Association; BP MS-150; Breaking Strongholds – Reflective Media; Coast Guard Museum; Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children (CASA); Feeding The Frontline; Fellowship of Christian Athletes; Interfaith; Mighty Oaks; National MS Society; RBC Gran Fondo Texas MCO Safe-2-Save; Susan G. Komen; Texas Children’s Hospital; Texas Ironman; The Inspire Film Festival – The Woodlands; The Woodlands Marathon; The Woodlands United Methodist Church; TWFG Muddy Trails Bash; YMCA; and Young Life.

Acentria Insurance

Acentria is dedicated to serving local communities – and that goes beyond insurance. #AcentriaCares was born because the firm is passionate about contributing further to the neighborhoods Acentria helps protect daily. Since inception, #AcentriaCares has donated more than $1.5 million to more than 125 local nonprofits through corporate contributions, fundraising events and carrier partner relationships. The company sets aside more than 4,500 volunteer hours annually for employees.

IAT Insurance

IAT’s Surety team in Anaheim, Calif., volunteering at Second Harvest Food Bank. IAT Insurance Group is a privately owned, specialty insurance company providing property, casualty and surety products for niche markets. IAT goes to market through eight business units – Commercial Transportation, Specialty, Programs, Inland Marine, Excess Casualty Mid-Market, Reinsurance, IFIC Surety and a newly formed Management Liability division.

NFP

NFP employees came together to raise awareness and funds around cancer prevention throughout the months of September, October and November through the NFP Cares program. NFP focused its charitable giving on the following organizations and was able to raise more than $54,747: Children’s Cancer Association by being the title sponsor of its 2020 Wonderball; The American Cancer Society by Wearing It Pink for breast cancer awareness; and Movember, in which employees grew moustaches to raise awareness and support efforts to “change the face of men’s health.” The NFP Cares campaign complements ongoing educational information and resources that support employee well-being, including bonus points on its employee health tracking platform.

Parker, Smith & Feek

Parker, Smith & Feek has a long tradition of local community involvement, encouraging active employee participation through both volunteer time and funding. Corporately, Parker, Smith & Feek supports more than 100 different charities meaningful to its clients and employees. In 2020, the agency gifted every employee money to donate to the charities of their choice. Its 2020 employee giving campaign contributed to more than 270 charities in 20 states. These charities focus on a variety of issues, including health and human services, the environment, animals, civil rights, arts and culture and education. Parker, Smith & Feek also provides each employee with paid time off to volunteer in the community.

Intact Insurance Specialty Solutions

In April, Intact Financial Corporation committed CAD$2,000,000 for COVID-19 relief efforts throughout North America, with USD$500,000 targeted to U.S. nonprofits; $200,000 was donated to Feeding America, a hunger-relief organization. An additional $300,000 was contributed to local nonprofits within those communities where the company’s employees live and work. Intact’s motto was to assist organizations that supported people in need due to the pandemic. In early summer, Intact’s U.S. home office city of Minneapolis was in the global spotlight due to the tragic death of George Floyd. Intact committed AD$500,000 in donations across North America.

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Insurance Journal West December 21, 2020
December 21, 2020
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The Charity Issue; Photos of Your Organization Involved in Charity Work