1,000-Plus Hours: Collaboration and Inspiration on the Pro Bono Front

Collaboration has been on my mind a lot since we kicked off the new year. As cheesy as it may sound, I can’t help but see it everywhere, particularly at Greentarget. Our team has been working tirelessly to put 2017 plans in motion for our clients, including those we serve on a pro bono basis.

We’ve been so busy that, with March almost upon us, I’m just now getting around to recapping the highlights of Greentarget’s great work — and collaboration — with our pro bono clients in 2016. Last year we set our annual Billion + Change donated-time target at 700 hours and exceeded that by 150 percent. That means we donated 1,055 hours or roughly $300,000 worth of Greentarget’s time, talent and energy to pro bono and community investment causes. Here’s a quick summary:

Pro Bono

  • DC Affordable Law Firm: Our media relations and content teams worked with DCALF — a low bono, nonprofit law firm in Washington, D.C., representing low- to moderate-income individuals — to develop an entry for the American Bar Association’s 2017 Brown Award.
  • Domestic Violence Legal Clinic: The GT team proactively positioned DVLC Executive Director Margaret Duval around high-profile domestic violence cases in sports in top-tier publications such as Forbes and The New York Times, all the while providing content and social media support for events.
  • Fabretto: The GT crew worked with the international NGO, which serves more than 18,000 children and youth through work in seven Fabretto Education Centers and more than 250 local public schools, to promote the organization’s annual Night for Niños events that raise funds to provide services to underserved children and their families in Nicaragua.
  • Gigi’s Playhouse: The team developed a comprehensive media plan for Gigi’s, a Down syndrome organization with an established network of 30 centers across the U.S. and Mexico. Our media plan included strategies to support the business operations of the brand, expand national education and awareness programs and provide real-time support for the national launch of their Generation G initiative. We also published a Q&A with the CEO/Founder, Nancy Gianni.
  • Greenhouse: Our media relations team helped this nonprofit consultancy lay the groundwork for drawing attention to the transformative work it’s done in education. Our content team helped Greenhouse shape an editorial strategy around its unique perspective on the assumptions we make in our everyday behavior.
  • Heartland Alliance: The GT team conducted outreach for Heartland’s Housing Division, which develops and manages sustainable, innovative and high-quality affordable housing. The team positioned executives Michael Goldberg and Nadia Underhill to garner exposure around specific projects and promote thought leadership on the affordable housing debate.
  • Plant Chicago: GT helped promote Plant Chicago’s August 2016 “Closed Loop Food Festival,” which included farmer’s market vendors, food trucks, music, beer makers and more. Event details were published in 11 Chicago event calendars, and we secured three media placements and developed a social media plan.
  • St. George Island: The team, working on behalf of Native Americans living on St. George Island, Alaska, raised awareness among national and regional media concerning the danger of this community dying out if a promised fishing harbor is not advanced by the federal government.
  • Women for Afghan Women: The GT Team provided PR support for WAW’s annual gala, 15 Years of Spirit Indestructible. Additionally, we provided media support for major events impacting the organization such as the brutal murder and rape of a 6-year-old Afghan refugee girl and a town hall meeting in response to the Orlando massacre. Furthermore, we’ve interviewed the executive director about communicating from an international war zone.

Community Investment

  • Chase Corporate Challenge: The GT team bonded through a hot, sweaty 3.5-mile Chase Corporate Challenge run, which benefits a different Chicagoland nonprofit each year.
  • College Possible Visits: GT coordinated two visits to the Kelly and Lake View High Schools to help students with their special circumstance essays. This essay is one of the key components of a college application and empowers students to share their stories and recognize their college potential.
  • Ronald McDonald House: A GT crew volunteered at the Ronald McDonald House near Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago to make a delicious breakfast for dinner — mountains of pancakes, breakfast casseroles, baked oatmeal and fruit — for families in need.

Even as we’re moving at warp speed through 2017, it’s inspiring to look back at the teamwork that took place last year across Greentarget to support our pro bono clients. Stay tuned, as we have many exciting partnerships in the works for 2017, including Barrel of Monkeys, KIND and the Cameron Kravitt Foundation, to name a few.

Abby has built a successful career providing clients with top quality support in communication strategy, media relations, crisis communication, social media management, project coordination, executive positioning, writing and editing.

She enjoys horseback riding, either training in the northwest suburbs of her hometown of Chicago or exploring the trails of Montana.