Our business is built around revitalizing communities, and we care deeply about leaving a positive impact. We wanted to come up with a program to give back to our communities in a way that resonates with our employees. Thus, The Giving Gorilla was born. Each month Gorilla Capital will make a monetary donation to 1-2 charities, organizations, or programs nominated by our employees. We will donate up to $5,000 this calendar year to employee chosen programs. We left the definition of “community” up to the individual employees to interpret for themselves, as they may consider their community to be the world, the nation, the state, or their local neighborhood.
I would like to nominate Pearl Buck Center. Pearl Buck Center, a non-profit headquartered in Eugene, offers people with various abilities and their families quality choices and support to achieve their goals. They have several programs that they offer within our community such as: preschool, adult day services, production facilities, supported living, and community employment. Its a tough decision to decide which program to support within Pearl Buck Center, but I’m choosing the Preschool/Parent Support Services program. Because these kids don’t qualify for any government assistance because they don’t have disability technically. But they are at a huge disadvantage because their parents aren’t able to adequately teach them life skills.
Preschool: When adults with developmental disabilities have children, they often have children with normal abilities, however the parent is not able to provide the intellectual stimulation the child needs from ages 0-5 and the child can be severely behind in abilities when entering kindergarten. Since the child is labeled “normal” by the government, the child does not qualify for any support. This is where Pearl Buck Center comes in and provides intellectual stimulating environment from ages 1-5 for free to the parents. This significantly improves the child’s chances of not getting left behind when they enter kindergarten.
Adult Day Services: The Life Enhancing Activites Program (LEAP) aims to broaden creativity, stimulate intellect and to promote healthy living through a variety of small group activities. The program includes community integration to build social skills and to encourage participation in the community. Our staff has extensive experience with a wide range of disabilities and strives to bring out each individual’s potential.
- Arts and crafts
- Music and dance
- Enjoying movies
- Reading and story-telling
- Cooking club
- Recreation and games
- Community outings, including visiting local businesses and parks
Supported Living: This program aims to help build a healthy and safe lifestyle through regular visits by our staff. Depending on each person’s preferences and needs, we help to build skills needed to successfully thrive in the community independently.
- Securing an apartment or home
- Household cleaning and maintenance
- Meal planning and preparation
- Grocery shopping
- Doctor visits
- Medication management
- Money management
- Activities and outings
Community Employment: Pearl Buck partner’s with local businesses to help find jobs in the local community for adults of various abilities. Pearl Buck will assist in the training of the employee and provide guidance to the employer as to what type of job will work best for both the client and the adult. Pearl Buck also helps it’s participating adults with building their resume and enhancing their interview skills.
Production Services: Pearl Buck partners with various local outstanding businesses, such as Mountain Rose Herbs, Glory Bee Foods, and Red Ape Cinnamon, to provide manufacturing services for these businesses. Pearl Buck has a full onsite manufacturing floor and has several clean rooms where they can properly handle food. They find ways that work for their employees to fill product, put labels on containers, package and ship product for the business partners. They also have new computer design and laser etching equipment so they can produce awards, plaques, name tags, name plates, etc for businesses throughout the state.
I would like to nominate the Churchill Equestrian Team for a Giving Gorilla nomination. There are multiple reasons for nominating this organization. I believe that equestrian teams are great at building self-esteem, especially given that most equestrian teams are primarily female. I look at all of the strong equestrian people I have met throughout the years (including you!) and I have found that people that ride are very successful in life. Another important reason is that the Gorilla co-founder’s daughter is riding with the Churchill equestrian team. We have watched Maddie grow up from a little girl to a young adult. This company exists because of Ben and the vision that Ben and I shared. I make this nomination both for a worthy cause and for a child we have watched grow up.
I would like to nominate the Triangle Lake Robotics team for 2019’s Giving Gorilla program. They were also recipients of a 2018 Giving Gorilla sponsorship. Their 2019 program just started and they are busy designing and building their robot(s) 6-7 days a week. Following the announcement of the tasks, they are given 6 weeks to build at least one, but hopefully two robots that can perform the tasks outlined in the challenge. One robot will be the competition robot that cannot be touched after 6 weeks, while the other is a practice robot to train the team members on driving and maneuvering the bot. Each team is given equal budget constraints and timeline for their robot to keep things fair. The team is tasked with building a robot to achieve different tasks from year to year. Their program resonates with me because they’re constantly forced to challenge the status quo and innovate year after year to excel in their matches with a very short timeline and strict deadline. All of those skills are great to develop before entering the “real world”. As a small school graduate, I sympathize with clubs and teams struggling to earn enough
Gorilla Capital also proudly supports the following programs and events annually in Eugene:
Since its inaugural year 10 years ago, we have been proud to be the mile marker sponsor for the Eugene Marathon, Half Marathon, and 5k. Look for the big blue mile markers along the race track and the Gorillas handing out water and bananas around mile 8! We are also proud to say that each year we have employees and/or their family running the races.
This is serious stuff folks. For the last 5 years we have sponsored the reigning champions of the Eugene Women’s Volleyball League, Team Gorilla Capital. The team includes 2 of our employees and as well as the interior designer for our office space! In May this group of women clinched their 6th title in as many years. How long can the streak last? They’re not getting any younger out there…