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Team-Building through Community Service: Solver Service Trip 2023

Team-Building through Community Service: Solver Service Trip 2023
Posted on Monday, June 12, 2023 by Carrie Clogg

What does service mean to our Solvers? Eleven of my colleagues joined me for a once-in-a-lifetime team-building opportunity to find out.

In May of 2023, the Businessolver Foundation hosted its first Solver Service Trip. The idea was to select a small group of Solvers from all over the country and meet in a central location for a weeklong volunteer team-building experience. After months of planning, the idea became a reality and 12 Solvers traveled to Louisville, KY to embark on the adventure of a lifetime.

The Service Projects

Prior to the pandemic, Businessolver had an office in Louisville where we were (and remain) active in the non-profit sector of the community. In fact, we’ve strengthened these ties even further since our workforce went fully remote with Workspace Anywhere. We continually forge new relationships with non-profits in need. Allow us to provide you with a small glimpse of the organizations we volunteered with and the ways in which we contributed to the community:

  • Hand in Hand, an organization led by the fearless Marla Cautilli, serves some of the most vulnerable communities in West Louisville, building everything from wheelchair ramps to mailboxes. We were lucky enough to assist with the construction of a deck awning for a local women’s shelter, providing relief for the young women from the elements—sun, rain, and a walnut tree. We also constructed a wheelchair ramp for a recent amputee. And, created planter boxes and a picnic table so neighbors could grow, and enjoy fresh produce together.
  • The Hope Buss is a mobile food pantry founded by Stachelle Bussey, feeding the underserved communities across all of Louisville. We were fortunate enough to work on Stachelle’s second bus, a mobile community center for unhoused people.
  • Tip It Forward was created by Kammaleathahh Livingstone to provide healthcare to the underserved communities in Louisville. We assembled over 200 holistic care boxes filled with essential oils, stress relief balls, and more, to distribute them to those in need and promote self-care and good mental health among the recipients.
  • Make-A-Wish has been a longtime community partner of Businessolver. We have committed to granting wishes all over the country each year and felt immense delight when we synchronized with them in person, witnessing the impact of years of dedication and donation.

What our Solvers had to say about the experience

According to Christie Thornton, Sr. Workforce Analyst at Businessolver, “While no one thing we did was greater than the other, the Make-A-Wish alumni event sits heavy on my heart each day. The faces of the beautiful kids, their excitement, and their joy made all my own personal dilemmas disappear. I remember sitting with another solver and watching one sweet kid smile and laugh. I can’t imagine what they felt, but I am thankful to be a part of a company that helps to provide the tiniest bit of relief to the parents and children of Make-A-Wish.”

A pleasant surprise for all of us was the experience of arriving in Louisville with “just our co-workers” from varying levels of relationships, acquaintances to long-time friends, and leaving with a new family. And I mean family—people from different backgrounds, ages, cultures, job titles, time with the company and experience, wholeheartedly doing service work together. According to Becky Hayter, Consumer Experience Strategist at Businessolver, “before the trip, this group of people were somewhat strangers to me,” but by the time we left we were planning future visits, shedding tears, and ideating about our next trip.

Becky went on to say that “one aspect that exceeded my expectations was the connection I made with my fellow Solvers. Personally, I have always felt comfortable sharing my own lived experiences and who I am as an individual. Yet, during this time, it reminded me that not everyone has had the opportunity to open to empathetic listeners, free from judgment or scrutiny. Witnessing every person in our group dismantle their walls and embrace vulnerability during the moments that unfolded was a truly beautiful experience. The bond formed with these individuals, who now feel like family, is something I will forever cherish.”

So, what’s next?

As a Foundation leader, and as a passionate member of society, I implore other organizations to use our template as a model. Whether your organization is remote, in-person, or hybrid, seize this opportunity to demonstrate empathy in your company or organization, and extend it to your local communities.

This experience was a valuable, impactful adventure that the Businessolver Foundation plans to repeat in future years, in hopes of including our clients and other members of the Businessolver community. The goal is team-building through service to create a ripple effect—to not only give back when we have a week to do it, but to make time to gather our fellow employees to serve the community. Until then, I will be looking forward to planning the next adventure!

Read more about our Foundation efforts here.