Earlier this week, I posted this on our Facebook page:
Hey, friends! We need some help! Who do you know that might be willing to donate ANY of the following items for our AIM program: Rotary cutter for fabric, fabric cutting board, T-pins or a scissor sharpener? Sound random? It’s really not! Participants in our AIM program make blankets to sell in our gift stores. It’s how they make their living! If you know anyone or you have connections in the craft industry… please let us know!
Did I really think someone our in cyberspace would chime in and say, “Yes! I know the owner of JoAnn Fabrics and I’ll contact them on your behalf?” No. Was I hoping that someone would say, “Hey! I used to do a lot of crafts that used that equipment, but I don’t anymore. Would you like my hand-me-downs?” Yes. As a non-profit we often just take whatever we can get. If it’s new… that’s a bonus. Most of the time, though, it’s not.
So, when I looked our Facebook page and realized we had an inbox message from a name I didn’t recognize I wasn’t sure what to expect. The person went on to say that, “I’d really like to donate some items to help the AIM program with blanket making! Where can I drop items off? 😊 Thank you!”
I was super excited. Every little bit helps, and even if this person had leftover yarn, fleece or anything that might aid in the creativity of the people we serve… I was going to be pleasantly surprised. I gave the woman our address, and told her she was welcome to drop the items off at her leisure.
Imagine my surprise when the next day I received this inbox message: Hey no problem! Super glad we can help. I ordered them off line and had them shipped to that address. They should be there on Tuesday in an Amazon box!!! 😀.
Wait. What? The items are new? Is this a joke. Am I being Punk’d? Where’s Ashton Kutcher? Nope. She said, “Yes they are new! I couldn’t find a decent cutting board but I got one of everything else! No thanks is needed. I’m glad to help some wonderful crafts be made!”
I know that social media can get a bad reputation. It’s a time waster. It causes too many arguments. It keeps you from doing physical activity. The list could go on. And, believe me, I’ve heard them all. Here’s what I will say: some times it can be wonderful! We would have never made this connection or had the turnaround time on an answer using any other platform to distribute information.
I could have put an ad for it in the newspaper (would have cost us money and taken more time). I could have recorded a radio commercial (but, not everyone listens to the same station and, again, money owed). I could have posted a sign outside of our building (and hoped that a crafty or generous person drove by). Nothing has as quick of a return at social media.
With all of that being said, regardless of what you think of social media and its impact on society, it’s impact on our organization by just one person — HUGE!
Until next time… keep a good view on life.