The first week in December is always a busy one for 501(c) Services, the administrator of 501(c) Agencies Trust. Every year during this time the staff of 501(c) Services comes together for our annual meeting, holiday party and community service project. This busy week tends to be a lot of work and a lot of fun.
It all begins with a year-in-review all-staff meeting. Our CEO, Darren Bowman, presented a report on our 2016 growth and the successes of 501(c) Agencies Trust. We also reviewed the health of our ESOP – 501(c) Services is a tax-exempt employee owned organization.
Traditionally, following our all-staff meeting is our year end service project. In the past, we’ve worked with numerous nonprofit organizations in and around San Jose such has local food banks and Habitat for Humanity.
This year we teamed up with Child Advocates of Silicon Valley (CASA) to build and donate some bikes to local children for the holidays. CASA provides stability and hope to children who have experienced abuse and neglect by being a powerful voice in their lives.
Notice I wrote, “build bikes.” This bike build proved to be very…interesting.
We have a helpful supply of nonprofit tax, unemployment and human resources experts in the office, but many of us are lacking in areas that require “mechanical” skills. Plus, our planning committee decided we couldn’t just build the bikes; we had to incorporate a team building exercise into the activity as well.
The bike parts were organized into sections and the staff was divided into randomly determined teams. In order for a team to obtain a section of the bike, they had to complete an exercise. Some exercises involved “beer pong-like” skills, while others required abstract thinking or basic team work.
In the end, we had assembled five wonderful bikes for the team at CASA, while at the same time reinforcing our workplace culture of high adrenaline innovation and generous cooperation.
That evening we celebrated another successful year with a happy dinner and some healthy dancing.
We hope that you and yours have had similar successes in 2016 that you can celebrate. We look forward to all the coming achievements of next year – yours and ours. Happy Holidays.