It has been 22 years since the development of Team 1 Plastics’ Championship Dream. Created in 1999 with input from all its team members, this mission statement includes four core values and “is how the company lives and breathes as it conducts its business.” Amongst these four core values are Customer Service Excellence, Team Member Success, Freedom to Succeed, and Positive Community Member.
Within the value of being a Positive Community Member, it states “Team 1 will focus its financial contributions to the local community. Members of our families or communities will never hear: ‘It is not our problem;’ instead, they will hear: ‘We will work together to make a positive difference.’” This holiday season, Team 1 has continued two long-held traditions of contributing to the South Michigan Food Bank (SFMB) and helping one of its own families for Christmas. Additionally, they began a new tradition of holding a toy drive for the Marine Corps Toys for Tots Program. Through these kind acts, Team 1 has held true to its value of being a Positive Community Member.
Since 2012, Team 1 has made annual contributions to the SMFB around the holiday season, allowing the company to make a local, positive difference in Calhoun County and the community of Albion. With their mission “to enhance the quality of life for those struggling with hunger in South Michigan,” the SMFB has seen a greater need this year than ever before. Food distribution for 2021 has gone up 60%, when compared to pre-pandemic numbers. Last year the SMFB was able to distribute 4,030,967 pounds of food to Calhoun County alone. With the contribution being made in the names of their customers, this also provided Team 1 an opportunity to acknowledge their customers’ business and thank them, in lieu of gifts.
Another long-held Team 1 tradition stays even closer to home. Their team members are given an option to contribute part of their earnings each December to one struggling team member’s family. That family receives this contribution before Christmas; helping to make their holiday a bit brighter.
The Marine Corps Toys for Tots Program goal and mission is to “bring the joy of Christmas and send a message of hope to America’s less fortunate children,” by “collect[ing] new unwrapped toys and distribut[ing] those toys to less fortunate children at Christmas.” Here you see Team 1 Plastics’ Craig Clem, a former Marine himself, presenting an overflowing donation box to local retired Marines from the partnering organization, Albion American Legion Post 55. This new tradition provided toys to the Marine Corps Reserve located in Battle Creek, serving Calhoun County. In 2020 the Battle Creek/Kalamazoo site was able to support 10,156 children in need.
If you or someone you know lives in South Michigan and are struggling with hunger, look at the resources available in your county on the South MI Food Bank – Food Resources Page. More specifically, within Calhoun County there are 22 food pantries (1 in Albion), 14 fresh distribution centers (2 in Albion), and 3 soup kitchens. You can find those locations in the 2021 Calhoun County Food Distribution List.
Visit the Marines Toys for Tots’ Ways to Donate Page to see how you can make a difference for children in your area. If you are looking to donate locally or need to apply locally for toys, you can access the Battle Creek/Kalamazoo site.