Clothing Swap for Charity
Group Benefit Services hosted a Clothing Swap in July 2019. Employees were encouraged to bring gently used clothing for the swap. From the remaining items, the team was able to deliver 14 boxes of clothing, shoes, and accesories for men, women, and children. The team also received gift cards donated by Walmart and Target, and a donation from Kathy Simmons matching the Paint Night donation. With the funds received they were able to purchase socks, underwear and belts for the "guests in need" at Karis Home and Baltimore Rescue Mission.
Maryland Center for Veteran Education Training (McVET)
The mission of Maryland Center for Veteran Education and Training (McVET) is to provide homeless veterans and other veterans in need with comprehensive services that will enable them to rejoin their communities as productive citizens. The 110,000 sq. ft. facility provides housing, mental health services, employment, education, substance abuse support, financial stability, case management, benefits counseling, support groups, after care and now an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP).
Group Benefit Services, Administration, established a Giving Wreath where employees selected from a list of items for donation which included toiletries, non-perishable food, water, and McDonald’s gift cards for the men and women veterans. McVET’s Development Director also gave a tour of the facility and explained the program to our employees that made the delivery to the facility. Click here to read the thank you we received from McVET!
Seven-year-old Liam Fanning was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma in his femur and recently underwent Rotationplasty. Rotationplasty is a surgical procedure used to treat bone tumors in children that occur near the knee. The bottom of the femur, the knee, and the upper tibia are surgically removed. The lower leg is then rotated 180 degrees and then attached to the femur. Liam requires a prosthesis as he continues to grow and is determined to be able to play soccer and baseball again.
Project and Website Manager Candace Fallin is close friends with Liam's family so GBS employees wanted to make a positive impact on his life by hosting a raffle to raise money. They collected $767, which was matched by GBS and brought the total donation to $1,552. Great job, everyone! Click here to read the thank you and update we received from Liam and his family!
Take Your Child to Work Day
In 2019, GBS employees and their children prepared and donated sandwiches to the Faith Tabernacle Food Pantry. On the morning of April 25th, 16 children participated. They prepared sandwiches and Chex Mix in decorated paper lunch bags. One of the children, Hannah Rhodes said - "It was fun. I like helping others because if we help others then other people will see that. it will show them that helping others is cool. Then they will do it and it will become a cycle." The idea for the sandwich event came from United Way. United Way has notified GBS that they plan to include a story about the volunteer efforts of the children in their blog.
In 2018, GBS employees and their children created DIY, no sew fleece blankets for donation to the Neonatal and Pediatric ICUs of St. Joseph Medical Center, Maryland. GBS staff delivered the blankets to the hospital on May 8th. The nursing staff of both units mailed "Thank You" letters to each of the children who participated. Our children certainly made a difference in the lives of both tiny babies and young children their own ages. Click here to read the thank you we received from St. Joseph Medical Center!
On that same day, the children also made 75 "Thinking of You" cards for 14 nursing homes. They colored, stamped and wrote kind words and sentiments to unknown senior citizens. The facilities welcomed the gesture and were pleased to distribute the cards.
The Johns Hopkins Children's Center
Group Benefit Services (GBS) raised $2670 in support of the Johns Hopkins Children's Center which has touched many lives, including those of our employees and children, through excellent care.
GBS team members also volunteered at Mix 106.5's Annual Radiothon which collected $1,304,074.30 from individuals, groups, businesses and corporations. Since its inception in 1989, the Radiothon has raised over $21 million for the Johns Hopkins Children's Center.
The Johns Hopkins Children's Center offers one of the most comprehensive pediatric medical programs in the country, with more than 92,000 patient visits and 9,000 admissions each year. It is Maryland's largest children's hospital and the only state-designated Trauma Service and Burn Unit for pediatric patients.
Eastside Family Emergency Shelter
A Clothing Swap was held among the employees of GBS the week of December 4, 2017. From the generosity and overflow of clothes received from the GBS employees, an abundance of leftover clothing was delivered to the Eastside Family Shelter.
Employees also held a bake sale during their annual Holiday Bazaar, and after the totals were matched by the CEO and Executive VP, the shelter received $770 in cash.
Dogs Day in the Park
Dogs Day in the Park, sponsored by Animal Rescue Inc. (ARI), in New Freedom, PA is planned and hosted by an employee of GBS. The event took place on Saturday, August 26th, 2017 at Marge Goodfellow Park in new Freedom, PA.
Since 1976, ARI has been a refuge for homeless cats and dogs. They make a promise to any animal that comes through their gates that they "will never be homeless again". They hope their residents will find a loving home with a lifelong companion or a loving family; but if they never find that home, the are welcomed into the ARI family. ARI is home to several hundred animals between their different locations. They have many adoptable animals as well as animals with varied medical or behavioral needs. No animal is euthanized due to medical expenses or the inconvenience of care.
GBS employees volunteered by fundraising at a "Hug a Hunk" booth, assisting with registration for the Mutt Strutt, and assisting the event team with the many vendors that
Maryland Food Bank
Each year, since 2017, several GBS employees volunteer at the Maryland Food Bank. They assist with sorting food in the warehouses. It is an amazing opportunity to give back to the community with this organization that meets the needs of all the hungry Marylanders through carefully tailored feeding programs. GBS also donates canned goods to the food bank each year around the holidays.
The Maryland Food Bank had a personal meaning for one of our founders, Bill Simmons. Growing up as a "poor boy" in Charlotte, North Carolina, Bill benefited from a nutritious school lunch. During Bill's career, serving on the corporate fundraising committee of the Maryland Food Bank was very important to him and GBS continues to support this organization that was close to his heart.