Salesforce has long been known for supporting philanthropic efforts and encouraging other large corporations to do the same. In fact, charity is such a large point of emphasis in the Salesforce culture that employees are given 56 hours of additional paid leave per year to volunteer for charity. So, when the Geopointe team signed on to join philanthropic forces with Salesforce for this year’s Light the Night Charity Cruise, a successful outcome was almost a foregone conclusion.
As it turns out, our instincts were right, as the event was a success in more ways than one! The amount of money raised – over $41,000 – exceeded expectations, the night’s events emotionally resonated with those in attendance and the weather was picturesque, providing a clear view of Manhattan and The Statue of Liberty.
In her first year coordinating the event, Paloma Lara, Salesforce’s lead coordinator for the event, expressed how ecstatic she was over the outcome, “I couldn’t believe it when I calculated the numbers,” she said. “That’s like a salary, right?”
Interestingly enough, the most eye-opening result of the event may not have been the funds collected, but the awareness raised. A huge part of that awareness can be attributed to the victims, their loved ones and the survivors who were in attendance. Several shared their story with the group, providing a vivid portrayal of the struggles they endured and the importance of the cause.
One man shared his story and artistic talents with the group. “We had a singer whose father had died, and he had written a song about the struggles that they had faced during that time,” said Paloma.
On the official Light the Night website it says, “We are taking steps to end cancer. WE LIGHT THE NIGHT,” and light the night they did, as everyone in attendance raised the lights on their Geopointe key chains in the air to honor the cause and close out the evening.
The event’s energy didn’t end when it commenced though. In fact, Paloma was taken back by the positive vibes the event brought to the Salesforce Tower in the days after. According to her, their chatter feed was filled with pictures, videos and stories from the cruise.
Speaking to Salesforce’s fundraising efforts, Light the Night Campaign Specialist, Clare Kerrigan, shared some eye-opening numbers. “Last year, they raised over 2 million dollars nationwide, and $230,000 in New York,” she said. She went on to tell us that those donations were being used to provide direct financial assistance to 259 patients in the New York City chapter area, while also supporting 49 research projects in the state of New York.
Going outside of the day-to-day grind of the business world to make a real impact on the lives of people in need brings out the best in people – both professionally and personally. Light the Night’s Charity Cruise was a true testament to that.
Interested in making a difference and attending a Light the Night event? Check out Light the Night’s annual New York City concert, filled with entertainment and celebrations of patients, survivors and the strides they are making to find cures!