We tried this type of project two years ago and it didn't work too well, because all we gave away was one chicken per family. This year as part of our giving back to our community, we decided that we’d put together complete Christmas meals for 500 families who couldn't afford them. Our marketing director contacted local businesses and churches to see if they would contribute food items to our Christmas meal drive. She also contacted many church ministries to have them get in contact with people they know who couldn't afford to buy a Christmas meal for their families.
We decided that we would purchase 500 whole chickens and ask that the local businesses and churches provide the rest. Our goal was to provide, at a minimum, a can of green beans, a package of mashed potatoes, stuffing, corn, brownies and a chicken for each family. The response was fantastic. We had several individual persons and churches contribute money. Many businesses did food drives in their businesses and collected canned and prepackaged food items. The grocery store chain we worked with on the chickens gave us a really good price on them. In the end, at 4 of our offices we gave away 450 complete meals. The remaining 50 meals were contributed to a local food bank.
Since we started selling ACA health insurance in November, we simply worked with the people who we were giving meals to and helped them get health insurance. So, in the end we helped a lot of people twice with one project. All in all, we gave away 450 meals and assisted about 100 people in getting health insurance.
The office staffs at the 4 offices where we gave away Christmas meals, volunteered their time to assist with this project. A lot of friendships were made between the staff members and the people they assisted.
We believe that we had a significant impact in our local community by doing this project, and plan on doing the same thing next year.