Expanding Our Grant to Maximize Social Impact
Since our Idaho brand agency was founded in 1991, Oliver Russell has contributed nearly $1.8 million in competitive grants to worthy causes. We’ve helped create community gardens and human rights memorials, provided air conditioning for seniors’ homes and swimming lessons for at-risk youth. We even helped support the gold-medal-winning U.S. Olympic women’s fencing team.
It’s been a great 24 years, but it’s time for our grant to evolve and be more reflective of our current efforts. Today we’re excited to announce Call to Action. More than just a grant, this new program pulls together all our existing social impact measures—and even adds a few new ones.
We’re kicking things off with our revamped Call to Action Grant. In the past we’ve offered up 10 percent of our before-tax profit in the form of a grant to a deserving nonprofit that was generally used for socially responsible marketing. But legal status is no longer indicative of an organization’s social impact. With the rise of B Corps, Benefit Corporations, and socially responsible companies (all things we support), we figured it was time to expand our possible grant recipients to include social ventures and entrepreneurial individuals that are making positive social and environmental change.
So if you or your organization are ready to make some change and need some help in the form of marketing services like identity development, marketing campaigns, website development—or even if you just need some cold, hard cash - watch our site for information about our annual grant. The application deadline has passed for 2016, but will open back up at the beginning of 2017.
Grant criteria: We want to work with people who are out to change the way the world works. Each application will be given careful consideration based on these criteria, among others:
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Every month, Oliver Russell employees coordinate a company-wide volunteer event in the community. Whether it’s packing bags at a food bank, serving meals to the homeless, or picking up trash along our beautiful Boise Greenbelt, we’re game for pretty much anything that makes Boise a better place to live for everyone.
We’ve also made it easier for our employees to support their personal causes by matching the hours they volunteeroutside of work with hours they can use to volunteer during work (up to four hours a month). On any given day, it’s a good bet you’ll find our folks mentoring kids, serving on boards or maintaining trails up on the Foothills.
In 2015, Oliver Russell employees gave 920 hours of their time to the community.
We have big plans for Call to Action, including investing in companies making positive social impact, and an educational marketing series geared at aiding triple-bottom-line companies. We also hope other companies will hear our rallying cry and use their business as a force for good—and support others who are working towards positive social and environmental change.
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We broaden our grant program to include for-profit social ventures and internships.
Creating positive social change, one grant at a time.
We chronicle 12 months of measurable impact in our first public benefit report.