Santa Barbara’s Unity Shoppe continued to bring holiday cheer to the community’s low-income children and seniors Thursday with the help of employees from LogMeIn who delivered two carloads of Wish Tree Gifts to the Shoppe.
Ambassadors from LogMeIn’s Mission Possible program, the company’s philanthropic arm, drove over a pile of gifts to fulfil “wishes” the Unity Shoppe received as a part of their Wish Tree Gift program, one of the programs with which the Shoppe needs the most help.
This is the second year LogMeIn, a software company specializing in collaboration, IT management and customer engagement, has collected gifts to fulfill Unity Shoppe “wishes.”
LogMeIn took 100 wishes from infants to seniors in the form of ornaments with information about what was needed and who the gift was for. They placed the ornaments on two trees in their buildings in Goleta. Employees selected wishes that they wanted to fill, taking time out of their day and money out of their pocket to shop for the families helped by Unity Shoppe.
“It was a resounding success because a week in all 100 were gone,” said Anne Salgado, Co-Chair of LogMeIn’s Mission Possible program.
LogMeIn went back to Unity Shoppe for more, and ended up fulfilling an additional 50 wishes.
“All of the stuff that we have here, it’s all brand new. Other times of the year we could do used clothing drives and things like that, but at Christmas it’s all about brand new, and this is it. Our employees really went for it, I’ve got to say,” said Ms. Salgado
Employees were donating up to the last minute, even the day of the drop-off, to make sure all the gifts were accounted for.
“You can’t leave a wish unfulfilled!” said Sarah Jaimes, co-chair for Mission Possible.
The Wish Tree Gift drive is an opportunity for LogMeIn to engage with the community, a priority for the company and part of their “small acts, big impact” philosophy. Around the world, LogMeIn’s Mission Possible is getting their young employees involved with their neighbors to help meet the needs of their home cities and towns. By working with organizations like Unity Shoppe, employees have been inspired and have begun to donate their time and resources on their own, said Ms. Salgado.
The effort was a part of LogMeIn’s “Season of Giving,” their last hurrah for volunteer work before the end of the year. More than 200 employees volunteered to help fulfill wishes, in addition to collecting food for Unity Shoppe’s canned food drive.
“We’ll take help in any way shape or form. Like today, we recruited our friend Tony (Elia) because he has a big truck, and that was awesome just to have more employees engage in different ways,” said Ms. Salgado.
Not all are able to fit in a holiday shopping spree, and so Ms. Salgado and Ms. Jaimes also collected cash donations or went out shopping on behalf of others. In addition to buying toys and clothing, employees fulfilled $1,391 in cash wishes.
“We had a lot of Venmos,” laughed Ms. Jaimes.
The toy drop off Thursday is part of Unity Shoppe’s mission to provide 10,000 low-income households a year with food, clothing and gifts for the holidays while reinforcing the family. Around Christmas, about 100 to 150 families a day visit the Shoppe, and efforts from locals like the employees at LogMeIn ensure that their shelves stay stocked and the doors open.
For more information on the services at the Unity Shoppe and how to get involved, visit www.unityshoppe.org.