23 January 2007
The good guys...
I work for Unilever, a BAC (Big *** Company). We do stuff all over the world. Most of what we produce is used in a daily fashion by folks everywhere. I am proud of my firm. We do things in an ethical manner, take care of our people, and operate ahead (meaning better than) the laws and regulations of our host nations.
We also do a fair bit of volunteer work. One of my colleagues, someone I have never met has a program to help soldiers stay connected while deployed.
If you can help Art, that's great. If not, do something in your community (I know many of you already are!) to help maintain the greatness that is our nation.
“Adopt a Soldier Platoon” Helps US Troops Connect
Through “Operation DVD” American soldiers in Iraq & Afghanistan can send videos to their friends and families back home.
Thanks to the Adopt-A-Soldier Platoon (AaSP) – a grass-roots initiative launched by Unilever USA employees in New Jersey and Connecticut – more than 25,000 troops stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan have the opportunity to make DVDs to send to loved ones back home. This was made possible by the Platoon’s latest initiative, “Operation DVD,” which was started almost one year ago and is the most far-reaching project the group has tackled to date.
Alan Krutchkoff, a Unilever employee, is the president and co-founder of the Adopt-A-Soldier-Platoon. “A video is powerful. It allows friends and family to see and hear a loved one far from home,” stated Krutchkoff. “It’s better than an email, a picture or a distorted webcam image. And if a picture is worth a thousand words, what is a DVD worth to the families and friends of these brave Americans? One of our ‘adoptees’ in Iraq suggested this ambitious project, so we gave it a try.”
After hearing about the program, Valhalla, NY-based Fujifilm U.S.A. wanted to be part of this effort and donated 25,000 DVDs. “Sending home a video is a natural way to bring the soldiers and their families together, which was especially important around the holidays,” said Gene Kern, Director of Advertising and Marketing for Fujifilm.
However, getting the several thousand pounds of DVDs to Afghanistan and Iraq was costly. The Army and Air Force couldn’t ship the DVDs and the shipment needed to be paid for privately. “It was getting a little depressing,” said Krutchkoff, “We had the DVDs but couldn’t afford to get them to Iraq, even with the special rate DHL was giving us. So, I made one last plea to our more than 200 members for help.”
And then another generous company stepped in – the Pepsi Lipton Partnership (PLP), a joint venture between Unilever and Pepsico. PLP makes all the Lipton branded ready-to-drink teas. “We had a great year,” said Joe Bigos, chief financial officer of PLP. “We wanted to share our success with America and the troops.”
“Thanks to everyone’s generosity, we’ll have helped these brave Americans send messages home, share their feelings, show they’re okay and connect with those who love them and miss them,” added Krutchkoff. “Now that’s a great picture!”
Click on the following AaSP link and find out how you can make a difference in the lives of our brave troops: Adopt A Soldier Platoon, or you can send an email to Alan.Krutchkoff to participate.