Many corporations today are socially responsible, giving a portion of their profits to charities. At the top of a recent list of charitable companies, Wells Fargo and Walmart gave away millions to charity. Sometimes the donations are in services or in durable goods. Global industries that manufacture products in third world countries improve the living conditions in the cities where they locate factories, for instance, bringing in clean water and building roads. Other businesses support a plethora of charities. Sometimes, though, there is a connection between a company and a particular charity and the two form a partnership to maximize the impact of their contributions.
Of course, giving back is good for a company’s image, but it makes a positive impact in other ways. It improves the communities and the resources in the area where employees live. Businesses also find that engaging together with their employees to give back builds corporate cohesiveness. The largest beneficiary, though, is society and the charity the company supports. Many times corporations choose charities with which they have a natural connection.
An example is Palmco and ACCO. The last acronym stands for the American Childhood Cancer Organization. Palmco is a utilities corporation based in Brooklyn, New York, that supplies electricity and gas in Connecticut, Illinois, New Jersey, Maryland, Massachusetts, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The 75 year-old business is family-owned and family is at its heart, so it seems natural that the two formed a partnership that allows customers of the energy company to participate in the giving. Palmco donates a dollar for each registered account each month. That allows people who otherwise would not give or who could not give to participate and their small gifts are multiplied in the program. The partnership began in December of 2013 and by January of 2014 it had surpassed its initial goal of $10,000.
Robert Palmese, the president of PALMco, explained the affinity his family feels with ACCO in these words: “Being a family-owned business, we feel a special connection with ACCO not only because it was founded by a group of parents, but also because it is a strong voice and pillar of support for all families of children with cancer.”
Whether a company can give a hundred dollars, or a hundred million dollars, the concept is the same. Corporations that give back to society improve the world for themselves and for those they serve.