Before we rush headlong into the season of Meaningful Use task completion and flex-account deadlines (on the job) and holiday preparations and parties (in the rest of your life), let's pause a moment to give thanks. It's been a great year, hasn't it?
Our November-December issue, online now and coming your way soon if you're a subscriber, has a roundup of optical good deeds as its Big Story. But that article just hints at all the good works going on in our industry. We just got a press release from Ginter Eyecare Center of Lubbock, TX, which is taking part in its community's U Can Share Food Drive. "Our participation in the South Plains Food Bank's annual drive is a way for us to ensure that we do our part to help alleviate hunger in our neighborhoods," Dr. Jewel Ginter says. "Our annual drive helps to fill over 5,000 Christmas boxes with a week's worth of food for a family of four. It also provides food well into the New Year for struggling Lubbock area families." (You're sending out news releases about your holiday helping efforts, too, right?)
We also heard from Brain Squad member Dr. Rick McGuirt of 20/20 Vision Clinic in Lake Charles, LA, who is the community coordinator for Operation Christmas Child in a five-parish area of southwest Louisiana. "I meet with other business and community groups to encourage participation with this charity," he says. "I also made my office a pickup and drop-off point for the gift boxes that go to children all over the world -- over 10 million last year."
Of course, it's good to be "good for nothing," expecting no reward in return. But more and more, people want to do business with businesses that work to make a better community and world -- so your charitable activities can help boost your bottom line, too. At Ginter Eyecare, they're offering a 50 percent discount on a new frame and standard lenses to anyone who brings in 24 cans of food by Nov. 30. And at 20/20 Vision Clinic, McGuirt reports that Operation Christmas Child "is a widely recognized charity that generates a lot of buzz and activity for me and my office," adding that Facebook posts (with photos!) help spread the word. "Community outreach is still a very effective means of giving back and taking your message outside the office," he adds.
I couldn't agree more, and I'd love to hear more stories of your vision care business's charitable projects. Please post them in the comments below. And have a wonderful Thanksgiving!