How CQ Cares Is Making a Difference With Lynn and Tammy as Co-Chairs

Lynn Owen At CQuence Health Group, employees from all levels of the company strive to support a number of worthy charitable causes.

We’ve talked before about such events as the World Vision 6K benefiting clean water in developing nations, the sports ball drive partnership with the American Heart Association that encourages children to become more active, and the Salvation Army Angel Tree Toy Drive that provides children with gifts for the holidays, to name a few.

But where do all these great causes come from, and how does CQ get involved?

It’s all thanks to the CQ Cares Committee, an internal group that meets regularly to champion nonprofits and help CQ employees and families give back to the community.

Tammy NelsonAlthough CQ Cares has been led by a variety of people over the years, the job currently falls to two dedicated co-chairs: Tammy Nelson, Sales Contract Manager, and Lynn Owen, HR Business Partner. Thanks to their passion for charity work, ability to lead and creativity in supporting all manner of causes, CQuence Health Group and its partner companies, Cassling and Ensocare, continue to be at the forefront of charitable giving in the Omaha area.

A Charity for All Stripes

One of the coolest things about CQ Cares is the wide variety of charities they donate to in a given calendar year. And that’s only possible thanks to an open forum where employees can express their ideas freely and speak up about the causes they’re most passionate about.

It’s employees themselves who come up with the events CQ will take on in any given year. And Tammy and Lynn are happy to share stories about some of the popular things CQ Cares has been responsible for. It’s a combination of new and old that makes the CQ Cares Committee’s job so much fun.

“We have our staples that people love,” said Lynn.  “Bell ringing for the Salvation Army is an important one, and the Angel Tree.”

“That’s one of the things that I really like!” said Tammy. “I love Christmas, and then the toy drive just ties it all together. You know you’re helping to do some good in the community, providing for children in the area that maybe wouldn’t have as good of a Christmas.”

“We come up with some unique charities to fill in too,” said Lynn. “We really like coming up with new ideas.”

“One time we actually went out and did yard cleanup for Keep Omaha Beautiful,” said Tammy. “They assigned us a few yards and we all went out and did that. Another time we did Habitat for Humanity, where we spent a weekend building a house. We’ve gone to the food bank and volunteered. We make dinners for guests at Ronald McDonald House.”

CQuence Health Group is able to support this level of charitable work thanks to something called Volunteer Time Off, or VTO for short. And it’s just what it sounds like: it gives team members an annual allotment of hours they can use to volunteer for something they’re passionate about and be allowed to use work time to do it.

“You’re always trying to get people to volunteer,” said Tammy, “and some people just don’t have all that much vacation time to take, plus it’s hard to find times where you can volunteer on the weekends. VTO gives people the option to take time to go out and volunteer without having to take vacation or unpaid time.”

Hope TotesHope Spread Far and Wide

One big emphasis of CQ Cares is to make sure remote employees get to contribute to these kinds of charitable causes as well.

As a result, many of the charity events we sponsor offer a way for CQ team members around the country to participate. For instance, for the recent World Vision 6K (and get registration paid for by CQ!), team members were able to run or walk their six miles anywhere in the country, not just the main meet-up location in Omaha. For the annual Golden Can competition, different regions around the country actually compete to see who can donate the most canned goods to their local food banks.

This desire to get people around the country involved is what led CQuence Health Group to participate in the Open Door Mission’s Hope Totes program. As part of this program, the Open Door Mission asks donors to provide toiletries for those in need.

“We thought, ‘what could we do to engage some of the remote people that don’t normally get the opportunity?’ said Lynn.

Members of the CQ Cares Committee knew that many remote employees were going to be in town for Cassling’s quarterly meeting: supervisors, account executives and more. As a result, there was a chance to get people to invest in this cause in a way they hadn’t before. So CQ Cares spread the word to everyone and amassed hundreds of toiletry items. At various points during the week, participants gathered over lunch, breaks and even outside of work hours to stuff tote bags with these items, turning the charity drive into a great teambuilding event too!

Once all the bags were filled, those totes were then delivered to the Open Door Mission by a team of CQ Cares committee members.

“We knew it was going to be a big project because we were going to collect donations and volunteer time,” said Lynn. “But I’ll tell you what, people came through. In the end, our employees always come through.”

In total, the Hope Totes Drive at CQ enabled the team to deliver over 300 tote bags full of personal care items to the Open Door Mission! That people throughout the country were able to participate at our home office made this result all the sweeter.

A Culture of GivingHabitat for Humanity

Both Lynn and Tammy are quick to point out that charitable giving at CQuence Health Group is a collective effort, albeit one that starts at the top.

“I think it helps that Mike Cassling is so involved in the community and that he knows the value of this kind of charity work,” said Lynn. “People always see it, whether it’s here through our CQ initiatives or out at other community events carrying the Cassling name.”

“I would definitely agree,” said Tammy. “It just helps give an awareness as to the needs out there. It gives people an outlet on ways that they can donate and give back to the community. Mike’s the one, and the whole Cassling family very much encourages that level of charitable giving.”

Thank you to Lynn and Tammy for organizing these fantastic efforts to benefit the community. Stay tuned to the CQ blog for the latest charity news and to find out how you can participate!

Marc Costanzo
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