Our 2nd Annual Abstrakt Gives Back Day was a huge hit! On August 3rd, we partnered with organizations throughout St. Louis and surrounding areas in an effort to give back to the community. We granted all Abstrakt employees paid leave to participate in the event. We kicked it off with a quick breakfast in the morning, then headed out to our designated spots at each organization. Afterward, we held a reception at Morgan Street Brewery with food, drinks and live music from JABAM!
Learn more about our day of volunteering at each organization:
Volunteers were definitely “Lovin’ It” at the Ronald McDonald House! “We did a lot of cleaning and organizing throughout the house, but we also baked cookies! It was a great learning experience and team building opportunity for us.”
Gateway Pet Guardians rescues strays from East St. Louis and adopts them into new homes. We love the paws-itive impact this organization is making in our community. Plus, we are a sucker for cute, furry friends so our day of cleaning flew by fast!
Mission: St. Louis works to eradicate poverty by empowering individuals and their families. Volunteer Danny Beene said, “We were greeted by Markell Jones who gave us a quick brief of the Mission: St. Louis history. She explained how much their organization helps the young men of the St. Louis City community. Guests and volunteers alike are welcome to stay in the residential area of the building if they need to. The building turned 100 years old this year! Since it’s only occupied/refreshed every so often, it was a little worse for the wear. We painted the foyer, elevator landing area and the main hallway with some fresh, clean colors. Once we were done, it just felt happier. The place looked brand new!”
There’s no place like home, which is why Gateway 180 works so hard to support people as they move on to stability, independence, and permanent housing. At Gateway 180, we were able to play with kids as well as assist with cleaning the facility to make it feel more like home!
“We were welcomed by Longmeadow employees and provided a list of chores they needed assistance with at the farm. They not only rescue horses but an array of farm animals such as pigs, goats, and llamas. We cleaned out pig, goat, and llama pens. We all worked hard, and we were able to finish the whole list!” -Jan
St. Louis Effort for AIDS
We’ve found a new favorite spot in St. Louis besides Ted Drewes! Our group who volunteered at St. Louis Effort for AID
S learned a lot about the organization, AIDS and those affected by the disease. They assisted the organization by folding t-shirts and putting together kits for clients. One of our favorite parts about this organization was the PAWS program they offer!
“Volunteering at PALS is unique because not only are the human workers grateful for all the extra help, but the four-footed people are grateful as well.” -John
We did a lot of gardening on Give Back Day, with the majority of it happening through Gateway Greening. We helped out at Southside Wellness Center Garden, Maplewood-Richmond Heights Elementary School Garden, Columbia Elementary School Garden, Fountain Park Community Garden and Metropolitan Village Garden.
A little less garden, a little more farm action. The Maplewood-Richmond Heights Elementary School Garden was especially intriguing as we were able to help plant not only flowers but food as well. At the Southside Wellness Center Garden, our volunteers transformed the garden with new plants, tilling, pulling weeds and adding mulch. A congressman was visiting the center later in the day, so we were glad we could help fix it up!
Just for kicks and grins! Our volunteers spent their day with Special Olympics athletes playing kickball. “Seeing the joy on all the athlete’s faces really made me feel fulfilled and made me realize how enjoyable it can be to give back to the community,” said Aaron Graue.
We’re on our way, (Almost) Home Sweet Home! Almost Home is a place for motivated young mothers who want to make a change for themselves and their baby. It was a very inspiring environment for our volunteers who were able to spruce up the outside of the building!
One of our interns, who participated in Give Back Day for the first time, said, “Working with Angels’ Arms was an awesome experience! We were able to see how much they care for each of the families in their care, as well as how dedicated they are to making transitions as smooth as possible for both the children and their foster families.”
“Sometimes it’s easy to forget how the little things make such a difference. Getting 10 people in a room to crank out 100 binders saved Epworth coordinators HOURS of work – allowing them to spend more time influencing Epworth Youth and making an even greater impact on the community! We ended the day noshing on some super yummy quesadillas and spending some time with the Youth. It was a really great experience and I can’t wait to do it again next year!” -Kristin
Friends of Kids with Cancer has been a favorite for each Give Back Day so far. Our volunteers go out shopping for toys and other items and deliver them to kids who are fighting for their lives. It’s definitely an emotional, yet rewarding day for these volunteers!
Volunteers for Habitat for Humanity came ready to work! These 10 volunteers were able to help install the foundation of a house during their volunteer hours!
St. Louis Crisis Nursery felt like a Safe Haven for these sweet kids, said volunteers. Here, volunteers spent the day sharing and sorting donation items and even got to interact with the kids for a little bit.
Our day at Operation Food Search was very eye-opening, to say the least. It is truly amazing how much food they are able to collect and distribute ($35 million worth!) to heal hunger in the Greater St. Louis Community!
We volunteered at organizations that help a wide range of causes, with hopes that our team members would find an opportunity fitting their passions.