THANK YOU! A look back at our 2020 Simply Giving Campaign
Let’s be honest: 2020 was a challenging year for many of us, including local organizations working hard to strengthen our communities. We were all caught off guard with the coronavirus pandemic, but there was a silver lining in watching how communities and nonprofit organizations adapted to the new challenges. Through creativity and ingenuity, many of the community organizations Great Midwest Bank supports with our Simply Giving program reimagined how they could continue serving those in need. Even with limited resources and an ever growing number of people who needed their help, these organizations found ways to make an impact. We’re so proud to be associated with them as they inspire a brighter year to come.
Simply Giving Background
With the Great Midwest Bank Simply Giving initiative, our purpose has always been simple: To give back to our local communities through volunteering, education, and donations.
Simply Giving: Volunteer
We encourage our employees to invest their time in volunteering with local organizations and events. While opportunities were very limited this year, many of us found creative ways to share our time and lend a virtual hand.
Simply Giving: Educate
We always emphasize educating our communities on the topic of good financial health and common-sense mortgage lending, including opportunities with local housing agencies to assist first-time homebuyers. This year we were able to partner with SHARP Literacy for a financial education campaign for teaching children about money.
Simply Giving: Donate
We support many local organizations and charitable initiatives through donated funds, gifts, supplies, and more. While we don’t publicly announce all of our charitable donations, we’d like to call your attention to our Casual For A Cause program. This employee-lead initiative is a shining example of how much we care about the communities we serve. Each month our employees donated out of their own pockets to local organizations of their choosing.
At Great Midwest Bank, we strive every day to carry out our Simply Giving mission because we have always had the amazing support of our communities. It feels good to be able to give back!
1250AM The Fan’s Annual Toy Drive
Once again, we were privileged to help sponsor the 1250AM The Fan 2020 Toy Drive benefiting Children’s Wisconsin Foundation. Children’s Wisconsin is the region’s only independent healthcare system dedicated solely to the health and well-being of children. They work to ensure that every child and family receives nothing but the best care.
While in years past we had new toy donation boxes set up in all of the branch locations, this year the toy drive went virtual. This was the safest way to give back due to COVID. Children’s Wisconsin made it easy to order specific toys through the wish list or simply make financial donate with just a couple clicks. All in all, we’re proud to announce that the Toy Drive collectively raised over $35,000 cash for the kids at Children’s in need this holiday season.
Annual Stuff The Bus
Great Midwest Bank teaming up with Elizabeth and Radar from 99.1 The Mix for Stuff The Bus, Wisconsin’s largest food drive! All donations benefited Feeding America of Eastern Wisconsin.
The team set a lofty goal of providing 125,000 meals for families in need. On behalf of Elizabeth & Radar, their listeners, and all of you that donated, we’re so proud to announce that over 127,000 meals will be provided. That’s a new record and equal to seven buses full!
From the bottom of our hearts thank you for making this event possible and for thinking of others during this difficult year.
FHLBank Chicago Targeted Impact Fund
Great Midwest Bank has been community focused since 1935 and we’re privileged to support local organizations making a difference here in the Great Milwaukee Area. Through a partnership with Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago, we’re providing the following organizations impacted by COVID-19 each with a $5,000 grant:
Housing Resources, Inc to help them continue providing quality home counseling services to prospective low and moderate-income home buyers.
Acts Housing so they can continue providing financial counseling to individuals and families become ready to buy a home.
Clarke Square so they can continue creating a strong, vibrant neighborhood so families and small businesses can thrive.
Casual For A Cause
Each month Great Midwest Bank co-workers donate to a charity or local organization of their choosing and in turn can wear jeans on Friday to ease into the weekend. It’s an initiative we call Casual For A Cause. Donations go to a variety of charities each month, helping us ensure individually we’re giving back to as many local organizations as possible.
Here are the following organizations we were proud to support in 2020:
- Make A Wish
- Gilda’s Club
- Fisher House
- Walker’s Point Youth & Family Center
- Camp Hometown Heroes
- The Women’s Center
- HAWS (Humane Animal Welfare Society)
- Habitat for Humanity
- Harbor House
- Pets Helping People
- Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin
- Milwaukee Vietnam Vet Center
Watch for the organizations we’ll be supporting with our Causal For A Cause in 2021.
Financial Literacy with SHARP Literacy
Through our partnership with SHARP Literacy, we helped students learn about the importance of financial literacy. We teamed up with SHARP to create a video to help parents talk about money with their kids. We even created some fun activity pages as part of the financial education.
SHARP Literacy partners with educators, fostering a love of learning and brightening futures for K3 through fifth grade students. Through innovative STEAM-based experiential programs, students learn STEAM concepts through arts integration while promoting curiosity, discovery, communication and perseverance. By building knowledge and understanding in different ways, these lessons create an engaging and collaborative classroom environment.
Garding Against Cancer
Great Midwest Bank proudly supported Coach Greg Gard and the Wisconsin Men’s Basketball Team this season with Garding Against Cancer.
Garding Against Cancer was an initiative started by Coach Gard and his wife Michelle. They have traveled near and far raising awareness and money for cancer research and those affected by cancer across Wisconsin.
Great Midwest Bank was pleased to donated over $4000 to the Garding Against Cancer efforts for the 2019-2020 season.
You can learn more about Garding Against Cancer at gardingagainstcancer.org.
As we begin the new year, we’re excited about finding new opportunities to volunteer, donate, and educate in our surrounding communities through our Simply Giving program. Watch for updates on Facebook, Twitter, and our Blog.