Triskeles is pleased to present Saint-Gobain with its Initial Impact award. This special recognition highlights and celebrates Saint-Gobain for the company’s outstanding achievement during their first year in partnership with Triskeles and the Food For All program network.
In the spring of 2017, a one-year $30,000 grant from the Saint-Gobain Foundation to Triskeles made it possible to establish an attractive 20-bed garden at the company’s North American headquarters in Malvern, complete with deer fencing, drip tape irrigation and a garden shed. Few could have anticipated the bounty that would come from the first year, or how their investment in the garden program would produce such a windfall for recipient pantries in the area.
Colleen Sgarra, a Payroll Specialist with Saint-Gobain, worked in the garden last year and made regular deliveries to a partner pantry in Paoli. “The people there are amazing, and so appreciative. Every time I would go there they would tell me, ‘You don’t understand how important this is. You’re feeding so many families.’” Sgarra added, “Doing that kind of good makes you feel really wonderful.”
The 25+ committed volunteers from the Saint-Gobain community worked to bring in a staggering harvest of 3,731 lbs., a per-bed average yield of 187 lbs., almost double the program-wide average. Determined to exceed the 50 percent required donation, the gardeners at Saint-Gobain built relationships with partner pantries in the area and donated 81 percent (3,027 lbs.) of their fresh organic produce to benefit neighbors in need.
“It’s great to see what a difference the produce makes for the recipients,” said Lynne Watt, a Manager in Risk Management with Saint-Gobain. Watt also had an opportunity to develop a connection with a partner pantry. “I could hear people talking excitedly about the produce, and having a chance to shop between multiple types of produce because we were donating enough to give people options, which is incredible. When I spoke with the director at the pantry she told me, ‘Getting this produce, for many of our clients it’s like Christmas.’”
The partnership between Triskeles and Saint-Gobain has had an immediate and meaningful impact on hunger and food insecurity in our community, and provided employees with new opportunities for development within their work environment.
Miles Miner, a Lead Accountant in Shared Services, was instrumental in establishing the garden and saw in it a chance to grow not only organic produce but a new set of skills as well. “I wanted to have a direct impact on the community and to continue honing my own growing skills. It gave me an opportunity to develop a leadership role, and I definitely believe it has been a benefit to my own career development,” Miner said. “I saw an opportunity to align my efforts in the garden with the attitudes Saint-Gobain promotes as part of our corporate culture.”
Miner added, “I think it shows that Saint-Gobain is a caring community partner. They want what’s best for the local community.”
“You’re doing something which helps other people and affects your own well-being, and that reflects well on the company, so it’s a win-win-win,” noted Sgarra. “It’s a good feeling. It makes me proud to work here.”
It’s a partnership that Triskeles is proud of, too, and we’re happy to recognize Saint-Gobain for their incredible Initial Impact!