Community. It's in our culture.
At CoverMyMeds, that’s not just something we say. Rather, giving back to the cities where we live, work and play is integral to who we are as a company.
That “be selfless” mindset is never so evident as it is every August during CoverMyCommunity, our annual month-long service initiative for employees.
And of course, this year was no exception. In total, 220 employees participated in CoverMyCommunity, forming a total of 43 teams — a new record for CoverMyMeds. Together, they spent 1,508.25 hours volunteering to help make an impact with 100-plus organizations in August.
2022 CoverMyCommunity Stats
- Number of teams: 43
- Number of volunteers: 220
- Number of volunteer hours: 1,508.25
- Monetary impact: $41,832.32*
- Nonprofits supported: 100-plus
*Monetary impact refers to the amount of money nonprofits would otherwise have to pay for the work CoverMyMeds employees completed during CoverMyCommunity.
CoverMyMeds’ first CoverMyCommunity occurred in 2018. What started as a small group of employees looking to demonstrate their passion for giving back has flourished into a pillar event in CoverMyMeds’ annual plans. Chrissy Hand, chief operating officer at CoverMyMeds, has watched the event grow every year.
“Our employees truly embody CoverMyMeds’ culture in doing the right thing,” Chrissy said. “The impact we have every August is incredible. 2022’s CoverMyCommunity was our biggest yet, with representation across the entire company. I, for one, can’t wait to see what 2023 brings.”
Working with Besa to bring CoverMyCommunity to life
Per usual, CoverMyMeds — specifically Brooke Berardi, patient support center employee experience project lead, and Maddie Wilming, community engagement lead — collaborated with Besa, a Columbus-based nonprofit, to help pull off CoverMyCommunity plans.
“Besa collects and organizes all our data, which is phenomenal — they convert our contributions to a dollar amount, so we can see how our efforts add up and follow our progress on a weekly basis,” Brooke said. “They also help curate projects on behalf of CoverMyMeds, which is a huge undertaking for a company with 6,000-plus employees.”
Hallie Bawel and Kelsey Mitchell, coordinators of corporate volunteer engagement at Besa, were instrumental in those efforts.
“Kelsey and I started planning CoverMyCommunity in early June — we worked closely with Brooke and Maddie to coordinate six company-wide projects for employees to participate in,” Hallie said.
Those projects — called Associate Projects — included:
- Help with Activity Stations at COSI Farm Days: Aug. 13
- Make Treats for LSS Choices Families: Through Aug. 15
- Donate Blood with Versiti: Aug. 18
- Outdoor Beautification at Holton Park: Aug. 27
- Stock a Little Pantry: Through Aug. 31
- Donation Drive for Student Success Stores: Through Aug. 31
The “Donate Blood with Versiti” event was Besa’s first time organizing a blood drive, which took place at CoverMyMeds’ Columbus campus on Aug. 18. The event’s goal was to encourage 40 employees to donate blood, and we ended the day with 45 donors — 42 of which were first-timers. In total, the blood drive helped save 114 lives.
Of note, blood donated through Versiti helps patients at the Ohio State Wexner Medical Center. The event proved so popular CoverMyMeds is working with Versiti to plan future iterations beyond CoverMyCommunity events.
Employees could opt to join their colleagues at Associate Projects like the blood drive, individually sign up for volunteer activities through Besa or form teams of ~10 and request customized projects to do as a group.
“Sometimes, teams specifically ask to volunteer with an organization like Mid-Ohio Food Collective or First Tee, a nonprofit that aims to make golf affordable and accessible for all kids,” Hallie said. “When that happens, we contact those organizations on behalf of CoverMyMeds to coordinate a team project.”
Hallie and Kelsey helped curate 19 such projects for CoverMyMeds teams, supporting 15 different organizations. Additionally, our employees joined Besa community volunteers at 37 other projects in August supporting Broad Street Food Pantry, NNEMAP, Home for Families and many others.
It’s important we show up to support our shared community, and CoverMyCommunity is also a great way for employees to engage with each other.Cayli Baldwindigital pharmacy operations associate at CoverMyMeds
A chat with two employees who love to give back
Typically, every team has a captain who works with Hallie to schedule those events. For our digital pharmacy operations team, that person was Cayli Baldwin, associate of digital pharmacy operations. Cayli’s been at CoverMyMeds since October of 2018, and 2022 was her second year being involved with CoverMyCommunity.
“CoverMyMeds has such a large presence in Columbus — especially in Franklinton,” Cayli said. “It’s important that we show up to support our shared community, and CoverMyCommunity is also a great way for employees to engage with each other. Working with Besa has provided so many opportunities to help that happen.”
One project Cayli and her coworkers enjoyed was creating snack packs for Feed the Kids Columbus, an organization that provides supplemental groceries to families with children on free or reduced lunch programs. In total, Cayli and her team packed over 2,400 snack packs in two hours for the 2022-2023 school year.
Cayli’s been volunteering through Besa since she joined CoverMyMeds in 2018, but she’s been giving back to her community long before that. In college, she volunteered with the Columbus Metropolitan Library. She said supporting your neighbors doesn’t have to be complicated.
“Some people think volunteering has to mean a ton of commitment, but it can truly be as simple as writing encouragement cards for kids at the Ronald McDonald House, or dropping off donations at your local food bank,” Cayli said. “All those little things add up — the more individuals who take that tiny step, the larger impact we’ll create overall.”
There are tons of remote and virtual volunteer opportunities to take advantage of, such as making cookies at home to drop off at shelters for victims of domestic violence.David Parkisonaccount coordinator at CoverMyMeds
Another person who knows a thing or two about making an impact is David Parkison, an account coordinator on our Patient Services team.
David joined CoverMyMeds in August 2021, so this year was his first experience with CoverMyCommunity. However, he’s no stranger to giving back. As a student at Otterbein University, David helped start Promise House, a student-led community resource center and food pantry that helps break down socioeconomic barriers.
According to David, his No. 1 question during CoverMyMeds’ New Hire Orientation was, “How can I get involved with company volunteer efforts?” Since then, he’s completed about five projects through Besa, and he helps organize a monthly team project with his coworkers.
Most recently, they came together to write letters to governors and senators across the country to implore them to act on gun violence.
“In June, there was a shooting at Tulsa's Saint Francis Hospital — coincidentally, the hospital my mom used to work at,” David said. “That hit really close to home; so did the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. We’ve been working with Sandy Hook Promise to send cards to community leaders to talk about our thoughts on policies related to gun violence and safety laws.”
Although David lives in Columbus, many of the volunteer projects he does through Besa can be completed remotely, like letter writing — which is great for CoverMyMeds employees who live in other states.
“Although Besa is based in Columbus, any employee can volunteer through them,” David said. “There are tons of remote and virtual volunteer opportunities to take advantage of, such as making cookies at home to drop off at shelters for victims of domestic violence.”
Also, David added, if employees want to volunteer with an organization that’s not affiliated with Besa, they can still self-submit their hours through Besa’s website to ensure their efforts are counted toward our company’s overall impact. In August, for instance, CoverMyMeds employees submitted volunteer hours at 224 projects outside of Besa.
I’ve been volunteering since I was six years old — it’s a core pillar of my life. Giving back to others drives me.Trevor Seibelsenior account coordinator at CoverMyMeds
Celebrating CoverMyCommunity’s winners with a closing ceremony
To infuse some friendly competition into CoverMyCommunity, CoverMyMeds always celebrates individuals and teams that go above and beyond during the month-long initiative. Prizes include donations to the winning individuals’ and teams’ nonprofits of choice — $2,000 and $5,000, respectively.
This year, CoverMyMeds’ top individual volunteer was Trevor Seibel, senior account coordinator, who spent 41 hours volunteering during August.
“I’ve been volunteering since I was six years old — it’s a core pillar of my life,” Trevor said. “My first event was at the old Columbus Clippers Stadium. I was so excited to help at the concession stands, knowing my work would equate to families getting a Thanksgiving meal. Giving back to others drives me.”
As for our winning team, it was Cleveland Forever Angels — comprised of Almeida Dye, case manager, and Katy Marshall, project lead — with a whopping 276 hours.
Collectively, our company’s goal was to volunteer 1,000 hours during August. As of Sept. 1, 2022, we hit 1,508.25 hours — blowing that goal out of the water.
CoverMyCommunity 2022 Winners
2022 Individual Winners:
- Columbus: Trevor Seibel, 41 hours
- Atlanta: Deb Randels, 6 hours
- Remote: Dana Anderson, 14 hours
2022 Team Winners:
Columbus: VolunteeRx, 105.5 hours. Team Participants: Kembral Nelson, James Eloff, Katie Conover, Ryan Merrell, Kyle Dresbach, Nick Meeker
Louisville: At Your Service, 41.5 hours. Team Participants: Nikita Patton, Tammy Bradley, Frances Ruiz, Laura Laughing, Mary Mynhier, Tim Markin, Jessica Greenwell, Nadia Maldonado, Gerald Kinnunen
Remote: Cleveland Forever Angels, 276 hours. Team Participants: Almeida Dye and Katy Marshall
Irving: CMM Finance Dallas, 35 hours. Team Participants: Juan Meraz, Valerie Kader, Justin Archer, John McCloughan, Stephen Drennen, Ghouse Sheikh, Kanth Surapaneni, Greg Schulle, Douglas Bedell, Christy Buice
Scottsdale: Team Cox, 15 hours. Team Participants: Taylor Gamble, Kerry Stanfield, Alex Heath, Christy Crestin, Corinne Cox, Morgan Muchiri, Jasmant Singh
The winning individuals and teams were both formally recognized during CoverMyCommunity’s closing ceremony on Sept. 8. There, our employees and nonprofit partners mingled over beverages and hors d'oeuvres while picking up community service swag and celebrating our collective impact.
“CoverMyMeds has an incredibly far reach, especially now with additional locations — our opportunity to make an impact is greater than ever,” Brooke said. “We employ some wildly selfless people, and I’m already excited to start planning CoverMyCommunity with Maddie in 2023.”
Although our volunteer efforts ramp up considerably every August for CoverMyCommunity, employees don’t need to wait until 2023 to get involved with Besa’s volunteer opportunities. To sign up and browse upcoming projects, simply create an account at besa.org.
Learn more about CoverMyMeds’ impact in Columbus and beyond on our community page.