Community Servings is dedicated to providing free home-delivered meals throughout eastern Massachusetts to people homebound with acute life-threatening illnesses, who are unable to shop or cook for themselves. Each day, Community Servings provides critically needed nutrition to clients fighting devastating diseases, along with their children and/or caregivers.
As Community Servings’ pro bono PR agency for the past six years, PAN Communications partnered with the non-profit organization for one of its most important endeavors, a two-year capital campaign to build a new 13,500 square foot industrial kitchen. This vital project would enable Community Servings to expand its mission and serve the needs of twice as many people in the community suffering from critical illnesses. Community Servings set out to raise $4 million to make this dream come true.
To do so meant reaching influential members of the business community. PAN’s goal was to gain coverage in local business publications that would capture the attention of potential donors. There were limited venues likely to cover such a story, so the agency needed to make an impact with each targeted publication.
Previously, the agency had gained positive coverage by focusing on the personal stories behind Community Servings clients, but the team knew the business press would want something more hard hitting. To that end, PAN reached out to key area reporters at the Boston Business Journal and Boston Globe, highlighting Community Servings’ keen business acumen. The team touted how Community Servings’ careful and creative budgeting enabled the organization to apply 96 cents of every dollar raised from its fundraising events directly to its mission.
The agency highlighted the needs of the critically ill clients in the community while also promoting how Community Servings runs a tight ship, managing its finances in an extremely efficient manner. To demonstrate continued momentum, PAN continually issued news releases announcing key campaign milestones. Whenever the organization reached a new tier in its fundraising or earned a new challenge grant, the agency issued a release to keep the issue in the forefront of reporters’ minds. Further, the team shared key finance numbers to illuminate to reporters just how well Community Servings was doing at delivering on its promise to the community and to its donors. This made a strong statement to potential donors: Your money will be put to very good use and be applied to its maximum advantage, right here in your own backyard.
The team’s efforts paid off. Community Servings received positive and timely coverage in the local business press. Coverage included:
- Large feature story in Boston Business Journal about the capital program, complete with a rendering of the planned facility.
- Boston Globe article profiling a Community Servings facility
- Boston-Bay State Banner article about the need for Community Servings to expand its facility, complete with photos of the Community Servings kitchen.
- Boston Business Journal article announcing that Community Servings had reached is $4 million goal.
- Bay Windows article talking about Community Servings’ move to Roxbury
- Boston Globe and In Newsweekly stories covering the groundbreaking event.
The coverage brought about much needed attention among Boston’s elite business members about the dire need for a new home for Community Servings. Soon the organization surpassed its $4 million goal. Today, Community Servings owns its new facility, mortgage free, and is able to serve nutritious meals to more than 700 critically ill people across the community every day.