October 01, 2013
Helping Children Live Better Lives
by Candace Matthews, Global Chief Marketing Officer of Amway
We invite the industry to join us on Nov. 20, Amway Universal Children’s Day, to embrace a children’s cause in their communities.
If you’ve ever heard Amway Chairman Steve Van Andel or President Doug DeVos speak, you know they believe wholeheartedly in the power of entrepreneurism to make the world a better place. But it isn’t just the power of a business opportunity that can make a difference in the communities in which we live, work and play. It’s also the tremendous potential of our ability to mobilize people to help others.
Ten years ago Amway chose to focus its corporate philanthropy on children’s causes worldwide through the Amway One by One Campaign for Children and programs that improve the health, education and well-being of children. We believe in helping people achieve their potential and are committed to helping children get the support they need to thrive.
Our employees and Amway Independent Business Owners around the world enthusiastically joined us, identifying needs and organizations in their own communities and finding ways to help children live, learn, achieve and play.
Over the past decade, they have embraced causes in their cities and villages, making a positive impact in the lives of more than 10 million children. They have volunteered nearly 2.7 million hours to children’s causes and raised more than $190 million.
Their example is inspiring, and they are making a difference. Let me share a few examples of how our business owners have impacted children around the world:
- In rural China, Amway built nutrition kitchens through the “Spring Sprout Project” to help children and their families learn to prepare nutritious meals.
- Our business owners in South Africa provided lap desks when they learned Johannesburg students didn’t have desks in their classrooms.
- In Thailand, a “Flying Book” program helped support literacy efforts by bringing books to Thai children who typically only read two books per year.
- Business owners in Brazil and Guatemala built homes through Habitat for Humanity, giving children safe places to live.
- In the United States, Amway built 15 KaBoom! playgrounds to support the organization’s goal of giving every child a safe place to play within walking distance of their home.
- We have leveraged our scientific expertise in nutrition to create Nutrilite Little Bits, a micronutrient powder to fight chronic malnutrition in children.
- And to help with the healing of the children and families most affected by the devastation of the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami in Japan, Amway recently opened the first “Amway Community House” in Tokohu. Working in partnership with local governments and nonprofit organizations, Amway Japan aims to build a dozen houses to give families and children a place to connect, rebuild and heal.
These are amazing examples of compassion and caring led by tireless volunteers and generous givers who help fulfill the Amway vision of helping people live better lives.
As we commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Amway One by One Campaign for Children, we hope to galvanize support and mobilize the collective power and strength of our global network in a single day of giving and volunteering.
On the Amway Universal Children’s Day on Nov. 20, we are inviting our employees, business owners and friends to “Commit to Serve” by identifying a children’s cause and giving their time that day to make a difference in a child’s life. We’ve launched a new Amway One by One Campaign for Children website at www.amwayonebyone.com to inspire people to give their time to help children achieve their potential.
What children’s cause inspires you? I’m passionate about two organizations dedicated to improving the lives of children: Figure Skating in Harlem and the Boys & Girls Clubs. Figure Skating in Harlem is a pioneering organization that provides New York girls from elementary through high school with educational and skating opportunities to help them learn perseverance, responsibility, teamwork and leadership on and off the ice.
Closer to home, my family has hosted fundraisers to bring new programs to Boys & Girls Clubs in Amway’s backyard in West Michigan. Amway has been a supporter of the Boys & Girls Clubs nationally, and our corporate involvement dates back to before Amway was established in 1959: Nutrilite Founder Carl Rehnborg helped create the first Boys & Girls Club in Buena Park, Calif., in 1948.
I’m spending Nov. 20 in our headquarters community of West Michigan, volunteering my time with several local organizations. I’ll be joined by tens of thousands of people around the world who will give of their time and talent to help children.
We at Amway hope it’s only the beginning of renewed commitments to pledge time and money to help improve the lives of children in the big cities and tiny villages where we operate. In the next 10 years we hope to double our giving and impact.
So many of our peers in the direct selling industry embrace causes to better humankind. We are inspired by their efforts and encourage them to keep giving.
We also invite the industry to join us on Nov. 20 and embrace a children’s cause in their communities. Together we could impact millions of children around the world in a single day.
For information on the Amway Universal Children’s Day or to learn more about helping children in your community, visit www.amwayonebyone.com.
Candace Matthews, Global Chief Marketing Officer of Amway