Twenty employees from Sundt’s Tempe and Phoenix offices donated their time last week to help ensure that area military families have a Merry Christmas. They spent 40 hours (combined) unloading and sorting toys that had been donated to Military Assistance Mission (MAM). MAM is a non-profit organization that provides help to current Arizona active duty military members and their families throughout the year – particularly one-time financial assistance with rent, bills, vehicle insurance and other needs. MAM also holds Operation Holiday Open House, an event in which parents can select from new, donated toys to give to their children for Christmas.
“This was our first time participating in Operation Holiday Open House, and it was really wonderful,” said Mary Norton, an employee working in Sundt’s Tempe office. Norton was looking for a way to help military families during the holidays when she stumbled across MAM’s request for volunteers on its website. With help from the Sundt Foundation, she distributed a notice to her colleagues and was pleasantly surprised at the response. Many of the volunteers came from Sundt’s federal division, which performs federal government construction projects across the country.
“The organization needed help getting ready for their big event last Saturday. The families come together, and while the kids visit with Santa and have milk and cookies, the parents are able to pick out new toys for them. Then they’re wrapped by volunteers so that the parents can take them home and be ready for Christmas – without the kids even realizing what’s happened. It’s such a great event. Next year I hope to expand it by collecting toys in our office in addition to helping sort and organize them prior to the event.”
The Sundt Foundation was established in 1999 by Sundt Construction, Inc., as a way for its employee-owners to give back to the communities in which they work. In addition to sponsoring volunteer activities, the Foundation distributes grants every quarter. The money to fund those grants is raised primarily through contributions from Sundt employees, which are then matched dollar-for-dollar by the company.
Since its inception the Foundation has made grants totaling more than $5 million to hundreds of worthy organizations. Most grants are awarded in communities where Sundt has an established office or major project underway. Employees can also earmark their donations for charitable organizations that benefit members of the military and their families.