For over five years, McCormick & Company, Inc. has shown generous and loyal support to the mission of Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland, Inc. (MOWCM) through volunteer engagement and financial contributions. In 2019, McCormick’s employee ambassador group, “Seasoned Ambassador Group of Experience” (SAGE) was formed. The group which is made up of McCormick employees with demonstrated experience, selected MOWCM as their charitable partner. According to Karen Noble, McCormick’s AR Broker Analyst and SAGE Community Service Committee Co-Chair, the pairing, “aligned well with the group’s goals, objectives, and in many cases, personal experiences with aging family members.” In just two short years, the partnership has flourished, impacting MOWCM as well as McCormick employees in profound ways.
In their first year, SAGE deepened the existing connection with MOWCM by sponsoring MOWCM’s annual event, “Night of a Million Meals.” The following year, SAGE enthusiastically supported “Kibble Connection”, a MOWCM program with the Maryland SPCA that provides MOWCM clients with quarterly free pet food delivery. During the 2019 holiday season, SAGE creatively assembled packages with green bean casserole ingredients for interested clients, delivering a unique and tasty meal.
Volunteering in-person throughout the pandemic has been challenging for McCormick employees as many are working from home and are not in the area. However, the team leveraged their ingenuity and found new ways to give back. For instance, they created gift bags with spices to be given to both MOWCM clients and volunteers, recognizing the hard work and dedication of all involved in operations.
When a product, Zatarain’s Jambalaya with Cheese, was discontinued, the SAGE group donated several boxes to MOWCM clients as a surprise treat. SAGE members have also participated in the “Client Wellness Calls” program, allowing them to engage with MOWCM clients in a safe way through friendly conversation.
Each year, McCormick hosts “Charity Day” which is the company’s largest annual giving push. This year, SAGE was invited to speak about their partnership with MOWCM during the virtual event before packing meals on September 29th as an official Charity Day activity. After the COVID-19 pandemic, SAGE is hoping to start a “Lunch Bunch” group in which members will deliver meals to clients during their lunch break.
MOWCM Senior Director of Institutional and Corporate Giving, Bill Fitzgerald, comments, “as the relationship continues to grow and SAGE creates spice gift bags for clients and volunteers during the COVID-19 pandemic develop, we are thrilled with their partnership in serving vulnerable clients in our communities.” Karen agrees, “As McCormick employees have gotten more involved with MOWCM, the impact of their work really starts to hit home as they realize how meaningful their gifts and talents are to clients.”