The word team-building, a means of engaging employees to better support one another and the organization, likely brings to mind varied images ranging from corporate board rooms to ropes courses. But what if it was bigger than just the team, and just the organization, and the team ended up working together to support the greater community?
That’s exactly what happened recently as 200 Food Lion leaders gathered in Asheville, N.C., for an annual meeting. What began as a traditional team-building exercise, which split the leaders into small groups to work together to earn parts to a bicycle they were tasked to construct, ended with 26 children from The Salvation Army’s Boys & Girls Club experiencing one of life’s great milestones.
“Seeing the looks on the faces of the children as they walked into the room and saw the bikes lined up was a very special moment,” said Beth Newlands Campbell, President of Food Lion. “I think we can all remember our first bike and learning to ride. The experience of being able to give that to these children was a great reminder that supporting our communities is just as important as supporting one another and our customers. We will carry with us that special time we shared with these children as we taught them to ride their first bike, and showed them that we care.”
Smiling faces and squeals of excitement filled the room as the children filed in and ran to their new bikes. Some Food Lion leaders helped the wobbly first-timers balance as they learned to ride their first bike. Others took off and circled the ballroom with their new rides.
In addition to the bike, Food Lion furthered its mission of relieving hunger in the communities it serves by donating a $25 gift card to each of the children’s families to help with the purchase of a holiday meal.
“We’re so thankful to Food Lion for this generous donation,” said Molly Dennehy, Operations Director for The Salvation Army’s Boys & Girls Club. “The children were very surprised. Some of the kids couldn’t believe that they could take them home. Thank you, Food Lion, for making a difference in these children’s lives.