No Jerks Allowed
This section is devoted to people doing great “Jerk Free” things in the community to help those less fortunate.

Connectria Hosting Holds Food Drive for Operation Food Search

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St. Louis company collects more than 12,000 pounds of food and personal care items

Connectria Hosting recently held a food drive and collected more than 12,000 pounds of food and personal care items for Operation Food Search (OFS), a hunger relief organization that provides food to the area’s hungry.  The value of the donations is over $20,000 and represents enough to feed 3,042 people for one day.

Founded in 1996, Connectria provides cloud hosting, remote monitoring, and cloud security for more than 1,000 customers in over 30 countries worldwide.  Headquartered in St. Louis, Connectria is active in giving back to the community and encourages other organizations to give as well through its “No Jerks Allowed” company philosophy and culture.

“When local businesses hold area food drives, it’s a win-win situation for everyone involved,” said Operation Food Search Executive Director Sunny Schaefer.  “The company’s team works together for a philanthropic cause, and the community benefits from their dedicated efforts.”  Schaefer added that OFS partners with many St. Louis and Illinois companies in order to raise awareness and assist the area’s hungry.

Founded in 1981, Operation Food Search (OFS) is a hunger relief organization that provides food and nutrition education.  With a strategic focus aimed at ending childhood hunger, OFS empowers families with a range of programs and services proven to reduce food insecurity and increase access to healthy and affordable food.  OFS helps feed more than 200,000 individuals on a monthly basis – one-third of which are children – through a network of 330 community partners in 31 Missouri and Illinois counties.
http://www.OperationFoodSearch.org.

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Coat Drive for the Homeless

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It’s the season of giving and Connectria’s own, Mike S., organized a coat drive for the homeless. Although this winter has been warmer than most, there have still been some chilly days. Mike was headed to work one day when he saw a homeless individual lying on the ground motionless in a park of downtown St. Louis. After dropping off his things at the office, he headed back to check on the individual and brought food and drink.

This event inspired Mike to sponsor a coat drive for the homeless. The NiNJAs were all more than happy to help. In total, Mike collected around 30 coats, 6 scarves, and a handful of hats and gloves. Thank you, Connectria, for your consideration, and thank you, Mike, for your compassion and thoughtfulness! We look forward to many more coat drives in the years to come.

Have an inspirational story you would like to share of people helping those less fortunate in your community? Share your story today and join the No Jerks Allowed movement.

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Polar Plunge to Support Special Olympics

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Connectria employees participated in a Polar Plunge to support the Special Olympics of Missouri. The snowy weather and 33 degree water didn’t seem to phase this bunch. Firefighters had to break the ice for the plungers to take the frigid dip. The fundraising event included about 1,000 people and raised nearly $135,000. The Special Olympics of Missouri will use the funds to provide year-round sports training and competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.

Local news station KSDK covered the event. Watch the video clip and see if you can spot the No Jerks Allowed t-shirt!

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The Bridge

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Connectria is known for its award-winning managed and cloud hosting services, but what some may NOT know is our commitment to our local St. Louis community, including a special place in our hearts, The Bridge (www.bridgestl.org).

TheBridge is a wonderful non-profit organization which provides a sanctuary for homeless and at-risk persons in St. Louis. Meals and support services for basic human needs are offered by a staff intent on eradicating homelessness by guiding guests on a path to self-sufficiency. Guests are provided not only food but other essentials such as clothing, shelter and computers with internet access.

Connectria employees volunteer at dinner services month after month and have been doing so for years. This includes preparing and serving food as well helping with cleanup and other tasks around the kitchen. But this is only the tip of the iceberg though.

Connectria donates its hosting services for the Bridge’s website as well as an essential health information database. Every person seeking help at the shelter is given an ID that contains their health information. If they are ever found in an unfortunate situation, their ID can be scanned for instant access to their health information including allergies, current medications, medical conditions and etc. Needless to say, this ID and the back-end database it is connected to can potentially save a person’s life.

In more recent news, Connectria’s CEO, Rich Waidmann, raised enough money to provide all Bridge employees with health insurance. While 50% was pledged by Connectria, the other 50% was almost single handedly collected by Rich at a Bridge fundraising event last November. This was such an emotional moment that people around the room were brought to tears. See a few photos from the event here.

So although we spend a lot of time talking about managed hosting and cloud hosting, we always leave a spot in our hearts (and time of course) to dedicate to local organizations helping our local St. Louis community such as the Bridge.

We challenge other local St. Louis businesses to join the No Jerks Allowed movement and donate their time and money to the Bridge as well. For those outside St. Louis, help out those less fortunate and eradicate homelessness beginning with shelters in your own town.

Have an inspirational story you would like share of people helping those less fortunate in your community? Join the No Jerks Allowed movement and become a NinJA. Share your story today.

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Volunteering at The Bridge

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The top 10 benefits of volunteering at The Bridge . . .

10. Opportunity to sport the latest in lunch lady attire.

9. Opportunity to bond with co-workers and friends.

8. Opportunity to make fun of your co-workers and friends in their lunch lady attire.

7. Opportunity to improve your culinary skills.

6. Opportunity to cut out of work early with pay.

5. Makes you feel good.

4. Opportunity to help out the hard working and much deserving employees of The Bridge.

3. Opportunity to learn a new skill in the event careers in information technology turn out to be passé.

2. Opportunity to gain a fresh perspective.

1. Opportunity to make a difference in another person’s life!

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Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure

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Connectria’s Community Initiatives Committee in conjunction with the company’s Fitness Committee is pleased to sponsor this year’s Susan G. Koman St. Louis Race for the Cure.

We invite each of you, your spouse, kids and friends to join us on Saturday, June 14, 2014, in downtown St. Louis for this great cause.

According to The National Breast Cancer Foundation, 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. If you, a friend, or a loved one has been impacted by breast cancer, please join the Connectria Community Initiatives Committee in supporting breast cancer awareness and research. Bring your spouse, kids and friends! The more the merrier!

The Komen Race for the Cure Series is the largest series of 5K runs/fitness walks in the world. The Komen St. Louis Race for the Cure® raises funds for the local fight against breast cancer, celebrates breast cancer survivorship, and honors those who have lost their battle with the disease.

Seventy-five percent of the net funds raised through the Race stays in the St. Louis community to fund innovative breast health and breast cancer screening, education and support programs. The remaining 25 percent goes toward groundbreaking national breast cancer research programs, including vital research being done right here in St. Louis.

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Successful Autism Benefit!

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Connectria’s Community Initiatives Committee (CCIC) wants to share with each of you that Saturday’s event to benefit Autism was a great success.

Connectria Hosting had thirty-two employees and guests invited representing our sales, marketing, finance and operations groups. Connectria had the largest corporate showing among all participants.

It was a fun evening with Corrine Chapman and her guest John walking away as winners of the 50/50 drawing. Dustin Mathews also won a prize and John Smythe and his wife Theresa were the high bidders on several of the evening’s silent auction items among others in the group.

Amanda Doolittle and Mike Solomonov also did a fine job with signage showing Connectria’s support for Mo-FEAT.

Sharon Moeller, Executive Director of Mo-FEAT, reached out to Connectria, its employees and invited guests to thank all for their support and participation. Mo-FEAT was very pleased with Connectria’s showing as this was their 1st annual trivia night fundraiser and our participation was very important to its success.

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