KBR Building Group Employees Show Holiday Spirit by Giving Back to Those in Need in Local Communities
January 4, 2012

The holiday season is a time for giving, and most importantly, giving back.  Amongst the chaos that the holidays bring, KBR Building Group employees participated in many charitable organizations across the Southeast. 

“KBR Building Group is proud of the efforts put forth by all those who participated in helping others this holiday season and throughout the year,” said Candace Watson, Human Resources Director.  Giving back to our communities is very much a part of our culture which we expect to continue in 2012!”

Here is a recap of activities companywide:

Washington

Due to the overwhelming response last year, KBR Building Group’s Washington office in Vienna, Virginia, again sponsored a family for the holiday season.  Our employees connected with a local family through Interfaith Works of Rockville (Maryland)’s Holiday Linkage Program.  The program helps families by purchasing the extra food and gifts that make this time of year a true celebration.  KBR Building Group was linked with a local family of nine, including seven children, and given gift suggestions for each family member.  The gifts, along with a full cart of food for the holiday season, were delivered to the family on Friday, December 16, 2011. 

Interfaith is a nonprofit agency and a non-sectarian interfaith coalition of more than 165 affiliated congregations of diverse faiths, working together to meet the needs of the poor and homeless in Montgomery County, Maryland.  The programs include providing shelter, clothing, and feeding neighbors in need and provide supportive services with the goal of helping them achieve self-sufficiency.

Orlando

KBR Building Group’s Orlando office hosted a toy drive at its annual employee holiday party, with all proceeds donated to the Orlando Coalition for the Homeless.  The largest provider for homeless services in Central Florida, this organization helps a total of around 700 men, women, and children every day.  The Coalition for the Homeless serves as a safety net for families, but the group’s ultimate goal is to return the Florida residents to self-sufficiency.  Counseling, job training, and educational programs are offered, as well as transitional housing and daycare for the children, until families are ready to move back into the community.  In addition, the day before Thanksgiving, several employees from our Orlando office, together with their children, volunteered for the day at the Orlando Union Rescue Mission for the second consecutive year. During the all-day event, over 1,200 homeless men, women and children were served a holiday meal, and they also had the opportunity to enjoy a wide range of activities.

Charlotte

With much consideration, KBR Building Group’s Charlotte office decided to help out a local organization known as The Relatives of Mecklenburg County.  The Relatives organization shelters youth 7-17 years of age whom are homeless, have run away, or are experiencing serious family conflict.  The mission of the organization is to keep youth safe and families together.  Founded in 1974 in the basement of the Dilworth United Methodist Church, the organization houses nearly 300 youth per year who have no other safe place to go.  The Relatives provides walk-in-crisis counseling to youth and their families, a 24-hour crisis hotline, and free parenting classes designed to help eliminate the family conflicts which cause family break-ups, resulting in youth running away or being kicked out onto the streets. 

The Relatives gave a children’s wish list and also expressed a need for home supplies including recreational and educational items such as balls, board games and educational software, linens, kitchen and hygiene items, clothes, diapers and other baby supplies, as well as various household items.  Led by Lisa Williams, the collection began in November 2011 and continued through December 3.

Raleigh (RTP)

For over six years, KBR Building Group’s Raleigh area office located in Research Triangle Park (RTP) has participated in collecting items for Toys for Tots, a nationwide program sponsored by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve to collect new, unwrapped toys during the last three months of each year and distribute those toys as Christmas gifts to needy children in the local community.  Led by the RTP Giving Back Committee, collection began this year at the office’s annual Thanksgiving “pot-luck” luncheon. Each employee was asked to bring an unwrapped toy to the event.  Continuing collections until mid-December, the office collected the largest number of toys in its six-year history.  Three boxes filled with toys were taken to the 2011 Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) of the Carolinas holiday gathering in downtown Raleigh on December 14 where attending Marines gladly accepted the donated toys with great appreciation. 

The RTP office’s Giving Back Committee plans three or four events throughout the year to raise funds for the American Cancer Society, Susan G. Komen, Habitat for Humanity, and Toys for Tots.  Committee members include Nancy Bard, Jonathan Mouton, Dave Rouse, Larry Wade, Lisa Watkins, Bob Wheeler and Clay Woodward.

Greenville

KBR Building Group’s Greenville office employees were consumed with the holiday spirit this Christmas season as they donated to the Salvation Army Angel Tree Project, the local Food Bank, and participated in Christmas Shoes! 

At the employee Christmas party on December 9, organizers added a little excitement by raffling off an Apple iPad2 — with all proceeds donated to the local Salvation Army’s Angel Tree project, which helps many families in need of food, clothing and shelter.  The Angel Tree project was able to distribute collections on December 22 to more than 2,100 needy children in Greenville County.  The lucky winner of the iPad2 raffle was Tom Templer, Director of Project Controls.

To support the local Greenville food bank, Greenville employees collected canned goods and non-perishable items.  To make the effort fun and to add extra incentive, those who donated supplies received an entry into a company drawing for fabulous holiday prizes.

A dozen Greenville employees participated in the annual collection for the Christmas Shoes Program, a community initiative coordinated by Cheryl Carpenter, wife of Executive Vice President Mac Carpenter.  The program began many years ago with a list of children and their siblings from a Child’s Haven.  The children originally ranged from ages 2-5, and included kids who were developmentally delayed due to poverty, neglect, and/or abuse.  Most of these children were wearing shoes that were too small or had been worn previously by other children in the family.  Today, the list of children helped by Christmas Shoes Program has grown to include children from the ages of 6 months to 18 years old in various other local organizations.

Greenville’s Boeing South Carolina project team in North Charleston planned a special fundraiser to support the local Toys for Tots program. The team held a hot dog sale, charging $6 a plate for two hot dogs, chips and a drink.  Many people participated and enjoyed a hot dog lunch.  The sale raised a total of $326 which was used to purchase 51 toys to make some special children very happy. 

Nashville | Atlanta

KBR Building Group’s project team for Piedmont Newnan Hospital near Atlanta, Georgia, organized an effort that hit especially close to home this holiday season.  Our Nashville-based team, and its supporting members from the Atlanta office, decided to “adopt” a former employee who faced a personal disaster after only a couple weeks of being in the KBR Building Group family.  In April 2011, the man’s family’s house caught on fire.  The man not only lost all his possessions, but he also got severely burned in the fire.  In the spirit of the season, the Piedmont Newnan team obtained his two young daughters’ Christmas lists, and proceeded to collect all items, food, and then some.  Together with the electrical subcontractor on site, the team was also able to collect and donate food, clothes and toys for the local Abused Women’s Shelter. 

Our team at the Benjamin Russell Hospital for Children project in Birmingham, Alabama, volunteered at the existing Children’s Hospital’s Sugar Plum Shop, which serves as an in-hospital holiday toy store for inpatients and their families who have to spend the holidays in the hospital.  Parents are invited to shop free of charge for gifts for their child who is a patient, as well as their other children.  In 2010, 345 children received gifts through this program, each receiving five toys, a book, a stuffed animal and a board game.  Our project team hopes that their help in the effort allowed for more gifts for a larger number children this 2011 holiday season. 

Children’s Hospital also hosted a fundraiser known as the Illuminations Ball, for which our project team was the presenting sponsor.  The Illuminations Ball was established in 2002, following the 20-year run of the Festival of Trees.  The Festival features designer trees displayed in the hospital lobby for patients, visitors, and families to enjoy during the holiday season.  After a three-week display, the trees are auctioned off to each sponsor’s business, residence, or favorite charity.  Many trees are donated back to the hospital after the auction to bring holiday cheer for the season.