The Trane and Thermo King locations are slightly more than 25 miles apart in the Minnesota Twin Cities metro area, but when it comes to combining their efforts to benefit their community, they could not be closer in spirit.
For the second year, the two locations had a friendly competition to see which team could Cram the Van with food and school supplies to benefit Greater Twin Cities United Way agencies.
Following last year’s competition, a total of 1,800 pounds of food was donated to Merrick Community Center and enough school supplies to fill an estimated 45 backpacks for Family and Children’s Services. This year’s competition would once again include collections of food for the Merrick Center and school supplies for the Family and Children’s Services agency.
From August 16-20, employees from both locations brought donations to work. A final “weigh-off” was held on Monday, August 23 at the Trane facility to see how much was donated and which team would walk away with this year’s Cram the Van trophy. Judging the competition was Julie Dyste, caring connection program coordinator with the Greater Twin Cities United Way.
The result? Trane and Thermo King employees collectively donated more than three tons of food, 6,120 pounds, to the Merrick Community Center— and enough school supplies to the Family and Children’s Services agency to fill an estimated 75 backpacks.
“While the trophy will remain at Trane, the real winner is our community, with less hunger and more children ready to start school,” said Pauline Alfors, system engineer, who chaired the Trane team. “To everyone on both teams, we demonstrated what it means to Live United. Thank you! Thermo King and Trane truly are Better Together.”
“If you consider that Thermo King and Trane donated about one-third of the supplies for all the backpacks given to Family and Children’s Services, that’s very impressive!” said Tammy Zahratka, human resources coordinator who chaired the Thermo King team. “Results such as these are enabled when people ‘Dare to Dream’ together.”
The coordinated, 2010 United Way effort for Trane and Thermo King in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area kicked off in July with teams from both locations squaring off via videoconference to see who could make 50 sandwiches in the least amount of time. The Thermo King team walked away with the win, with the Trane sandwiches donated to the East Metro Woman’s Council and the Thermo King sandwiches going to Cornerstone Advocacy Services.
This set the stage for the Cram the Van 2 event and several more cooperative activities, including the traditional campaign weeks, scheduled in support of United Way as the two groups work together under the theme, “Dare to Dream, Join the Ingersoll Rand Team. Trane and Thermo King Meeting Basic Needs Better Together in 2010.”