By: Jill Taylor
2020… Who could have ever imagined what a challenging year this would have been? Families, businesses and schools faced adapting and changing so much of what was once daily routine. Brown & Crouppen also rose to meet this challenge. While we were working to seamlessly support our clients and staff, we also brainstormed on how to help our community.
Brown & Crouppen has a long history of supporting community activities and charitable organizations throughout the metro St. Louis and Kansas City areas. This year we watched countless organizations struggle when regular life came to a halt due to Covid-19. Local charities rely on community involvement to keep their doors open, to keep feeding and housing those in need, and to continue important and necessary community and outreach services. They rely on the generosity of business sponsorships, personal fundraising, and volunteer work.
During the pandemic, Brown & Crouppen wanted to stay true to our community outreach commitments by maintaining our existing relationships and sponsorships. But volunteering was no longer possible- at least not how we were accustomed to doing so. Attorneys, paralegals, legal assistants, and people from all over our firm were previously dedicated to volunteering at numerous, large, in-person events like Sista Strut, Habitat for Humanity, United Cerebral Palsy Wing Ding, Pride and Annie Malone Parades, Bark in the Park, Meals for a Million, St. Louis Crisis Nursery, BAMSL’s Motion for Kids Holiday Party. We knew we would have to pivot as the safety and health of our employees and their families remained our highest priority.
We found ourselves asking what else we can do when we’re all still at home? We stayed in touch with charity organizers and found ourselves amazed at their resilience and creativity. We started taking our kids and dogs out for Virtual Walks around our backyards, neighborhoods and parks to support HDSA, MADD, St. Jude, Autism Speaks, Out of the Darkness Suicide Prevention, Share Walk for Pregnancy Loss, and the JDRF One Walk. The Arch City Defenders Race Against Racial Justice 5k raised over $12,000 for their clients and we had one of the largest virtual corporate teams. We made snacks, logged into Zoom and learned how to play Virtual Trivia to benefit UCP Heartland, Arch City Defenders and BAMSL’s Motion for Kids. UCP Heartland was able to exceed their goal of $5,000 with a small number of participants, Arch City Defenders trivia night raised over $10,000 in one evening, and BAMSL raised funds to support children in foster care affected by the criminal justice system.
We were also proud to partner with the American Red Cross. Beginning in May, we collaborated to bring awareness to the need for blood donations. Not only were hospitals filling up and blood shortages critical, but tornado season was also upon us. We shared their mission, sponsored their efforts, and our employees donated blood. Over 20 paralegals and employees have donated blood to the Red Cross, with multiple individuals going as many as 4 times, once every 90 days as allowed.