Empowering Communities Here and Abroad

I had only been working at McNary Marketing & Design for a month when the opportunity to travel to South Africa was presented to me. The trip to South Africa encompassed two things I like: giving back and exploring new places. Considering I was new, asking off for a two week vacation seemed like a lot to ask, but I couldn’t say no to this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. When I asked for the time off, Joshua said it sounded like a “great opportunity and a once-in-a-life-time trip” (exactly what I was thinking) and the time off wouldn’t be a problem, “we’ll make it work so you can go”. I booked my ticket that night.


The Outreach

I traveled to Limpopo, South Africa with an Iowa non-profit, Blessman International. I am thankful to have been able to take part in some of the wonderful things they are doing while building meaningful relationships with fellow Iowans. One of my favorite outreach activities was giving eyeglasses to high schoolers. Glasses have made a huge impact in my life, I started wearing them when I was eleven, and the look on the students’ faces when they could see better was heartwarming and relatable. We visited several schools where we had craft days with students, as well as two orphanages where we held babies and gave out shoes to the older children. Blessman International supplies all of the formula for the babies at the orphanage and I am thankful to have played a small role in their mission in South Africa.

The Experience

Every day was different and we mixed things by enjoying the native plants and wildlife by taking part in tourist activities that included a safari, petting a cheetah, walking with lions, and visiting an elephant rescue center where we interacted with and rode elephants. My South Africa trip allowed me to give my time to a humanitarian cause, see breathtaking views of one of the oldest mountains in the world, and see animals in the wild I had only ever seen in zoos. Without Blessman International and my McNary Marketing team, I would have never been able to experience this rewarding trip.

Reflection

One of the reasons I enjoy working for McNary Marketing & Design is they care about their employees, clients, and community. I like to give back to my community and world as does McNary Marketing & Design. They give back to the community by lowering rates for non-profits clients, sponsoring events like Operation Overnight and 1 Million Cups and Joshua speaks at many local events like Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance, EntreFest, and more. These are just some of the ways McNary Marketing creates win-win-wins. Sometimes that means giving employees time off to recharge and come back refreshed (ok, jet lagged) with new perspectives that they can incorporate into your business. Which will help create a win for us by creating a win for clients, helping them create a win for the community.

I’ve come to find that working for McNary Marketing means they care about your personal and professional development. Which can come in the form of a flexible schedule to accommodate something as big as a trip to South Africa or as small as working from home because you’re snowed in.


If you would like to talk about McNary Marketing & Design, Marketing Technology or travel experiences email me or say hi to me at a community event.

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