Last month, IMI Cornelius, Inc., the world’s largest supplier of beverage dispensing and cooling equipment and a subsidiary of IMI plc, raised a company record of nearly $17,000 in monetary and in-kind donations to support a total of nine charities in the DuPage County, Illinois, area.
The fundraising was part of celebrating IMI’s 150-year anniversary and goal of making a global impact through local outreach. On June 13, 2012, 15,000 employees around the world simultaneously participated in the IMI Way Day, a company event that involved in-depth employee training on the company’s code of ethical and responsible business conduct. All IMI Cornelius facilities worldwide then demonstrated these values by giving back to their respective communities through local charity work.
More than 300 IMI Cornelius, Glendale Heights employees worked in competitive teams to stuff a total of 648 backpacks for school supplies to be delivered to all 1st and 2nd graders within Marquardt School District 15 Elementary Schools, made 260 blankets for My Stuff Bags Foundation, and donated 22 pints for blood for LifeSource to help save 66 lives.
In addition, more than $6,000 was raised in internal donations, which was divided up and provided to DuPage County Animal Care and Control, Kids in Need Addison, HesedHouse, Shriners Hospital for Children, Chicago, Project H.E.L.P., and Northern Illinois Food Bank.
“Our employees went to their own pockets to buy raffle tickets for a long list of prizes that were generously donated by our suppliers and customers,” says Jeff Lumsden, president of the Americas for IMI Cornelius. “We raised over 40 percent more money than last year. The idea was that if we exceeded our goal, there would be a ceremonious shaving of my hair—and I now have one of the worst haircuts I’ve ever had!”
“It was a successful day on all counts and I’m so proud of the work that our team did and the way we came together. IMI Way Day 2012 allowed our employees to put our core values of excellence, innovation and integrity into action through charity work with results that will benefit so many in our community.”
“Many of the charities sent representatives to our event to participate in the day with us. We were overwhelmed by their stories and truly impacted by the remarkable things they are doing to help so many children, families and animals in need,” says Mike Piehl, communications lead for the IMI Way Day, IMICornelius. “Having them there with us brought a new level of enthusiasm and motivation, which was exhibited in the money our employees donated and the work they did making blankets, stuffing backpacks and giving blood.”
“I could see it on the faces when I met employees and shook their hands–they were all smiling,” says Warren Gnau, founder of Kids in Need. “That’s amazing for people to be at a corporate event and have that feeling of participation so in my mind, IMI Cornelius deserves a badge of honor.”
“For many middle class families, these are difficult times,” explains Jerry O’Shea, assistant superintendent Instructional Services for Marquardt School District 15. “The school supplies that IMI Cornelius has provided will be used by our students every day. It’s also a tremendous help for the parent population as it’s allowed us to eliminate the extra burdens for some of those parents who are struggling.”
“Most people don’t realize that animal control is not taxpayer funded as we rely heavily on donations to take care of the roughly 5,000 animals in our shelter each year,” says Kristie Lecaros, foundation coordinator, DuPage County Animal Care and Control. “We are so grateful to IMI Cornelius for helping us out with a donation and for getting the word out about our center and about animal adoption.”
According to Sara Klaas, development project coordinator for Shriners Hospital for Children, Chicago, “Ours is a not-for-profit hospital, so a lot of what we do is based on charity work. This helps a child stay in hospital for rehab, a parent stay close to their child if they are coming from a farther distance, or helps pay for a surgical procedure. One of the neatest things I saw during the IMI Way Day event was the team building and talking about what’s important to the company then putting that into action by helping others.”