Instead of a corporate gift basket, donate to charity during the holidays

Aaron Blank / December 23, 2016

Instead of a corporate gift, we donate to charity.
This summer, Fearey staffer Chris Guizlo, was selected to join firm CEO Aaron Blank on a mission trip to Ethiopia.

We appreciate and love the gift baskets from all those who have sent them to us this holiday season. However, for us, we are choosing to use our corporate gifting budget to give to charity; and here’s why.

This past summer I took Fearey Group-er Chris Guizlo to Ethiopia with some close family and friends. We visited the CarePoint that my wife Lacey and I helped start in 2013, in the village of Woliso where my son, Ermias, was born. Every time I go, it becomes another life-altering experience. It is overwhelming just seeing the incredible strides made coupled with the multitude of unmet needs in the third world. It is beyond us here at home. Coming from a reality where mostly everyone you know already has everything, to a place where many children don’t even have a working toilet or a clean well to drink from will certainly realign your perspective in a hurry. I think about those amazing, courageous families and children every day. It keeps me humble. It keeps me driving forward on a mission beyond what we’re doing back here at home. (**Don’t get me wrong–Seattle is dealing with some MAJOR issues. We too, are working to change that and will continue to be focused on our hometown. It needs us as much as the people in Ethiopia needs us.)

I want to give differently because of these thoughts and experiences. Yes, I’ll still read my kids’ letters to Santa with careful attention and won’t let them down; but, as I have in years past, instead of giving material gifts to my business friends and colleagues, we at The Fearey Group are donating to a carefully chosen charity in their honor. This year it’s Children’s Hopechest, a community-to-community organization helping kids around the world have a better life. It is the organization that is behind the CarePoint site we organized in my son’s hometown. I’ve seen them working all around the globe and we are dedicated to helping them support the kids throughout the globe.

The act of giving is my favorite thing about the holidays and there is really no wrong way to do it. Generosity and service to others makes our world better for everyone. I hope you’ll join us in focusing some attention on the many souls less fortunate than ourselves back here at home in Seattle or far away in places like Ethiopia— this world needs all the help we can give it right now.

Maybe next year you can think twice about sending us a basket – and donate to charity, too? Regardless, we’ll be grateful; I promise.

From myself and all of us at The Fearey Group, happy holidays.

The children of the Woliso CarePoint, sponsored by The Fearey Group.


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Aaron Blank

CEO & President, Partner

Aaron has been engaged in the conversation since the late 1990s, where he discovered his love of media while working at local radio stations. After five years as a radio reporter, anchor, producer and promoter in New York and Connecticut, he and his wife, Lacey, ventured west to begin his career in PR. Soon he caught the attention of industry legend Pat Fearey and the rest is history. Two decades later, as CEO and owner of Fearey, Aaron leads with tireless enthusiasm and contagious drive. In 2014, he became the next generation owner of the firm. He takes his breakfast at 4:30 AM and never eats lunch alone. You can find him working to connect the next business with tomorrow’s leader.

Personal philosophy: do something amazing every day and be fearless!