I was in Indiana last week collecting data collection for a statewide evaluation I have been contracted to do by the State of Indiana on their AmeriCorps portfolio.  Indiana has a state level Habitat for Humanity organization which administers a grant from Indiana’s Office of Faith-based and Community Initiatives to fund HabiCorps.  HabiCorps places AmeriCorps members at various Habitat for Humanity Affiliates around the state to help with volunteer recruitment and management, construction, partner family support, and other projects.
I interviewed David Hatch, Director of the St. Joseph County Habitat Affiliate in South Bend about his experience with AmeriCorps.  When we were done, we started talking about business support of the Affiliate in general.  David was very clear that the businesses that choose to support Habitat also receive business value from their giving, in addition to offering critical resources to help his organization with its mission.  As an example, he mentioned their partnership with Wells Fargo Bank.  Wells Fargo has expressed to him that they don’t want to “just give a check”, they want to be engaged with the Affiliate on multiple levels.  Right  now they are using a three-pronged giving approach.  (1) Regional Wells Fargo has given a cash grant to the Affiliate to help with expenses.  (2) Employee volunteers from the local bank help Habitat build houses.  (3) Wells Fargo employees also provide financial education for partner families.    

How can your business focus multiple resources which you have to support a cause you care about?