It doesn’t take long to make a difference in someone’s life.

More than 100 MANN+HUMMEL employees in Portage, Michigan, discovered this when they hosted United Way of the Battle Creek and Kalamazoo Region for a Pop Up Volunteering event on April 20. Some people gave an hour of their time, and some had only a few minutes to pitch in. But at the end of the day, what they produced would touch hundreds of lives.


Volunteerism has long been a crucial component in our work at United Way to create long-lasting community change. It’s also been a popular way for our corporate partners to get closer to the work, understand where their dollars are going, and build camaraderie with colleagues.

United Way BCKR conceived of Pop Up Volunteering as a way to acknowledge that while many companies enjoy volunteering with United Way, it can be difficult to send large groups of employees off site and into the community. So instead of asking employees to leave work to go volunteer, we bring the volunteer projects to them.

Woman with a soft toy

MANN+HUMMEL was one of the first companies in our region to host a Pop Up Volunteering event. The company sponsored the project materials, and employees volunteered on their breaks, or before and after shifts. Over the course of one day, they assembled several different types of kits that were distributed to students, families and homeless individuals throughout the region:

  • 150 Read-to-Me Buddies, stuffed animals made for kids in the Reading Buddies programs in Kalamazoo and Battle Creek schools.
  • 1,000+ Personal Care Kits for homeless individuals and families, which were distributed through several agencies including the Gospel Mission, Boys & Girls Club, Grace Health and The Haven.
  • 500 Weekend Food Packs for students in need, distributed through the Food Bank of South Central Michigan.

We’re grateful to MANN+HUMMEL for their partnership, their engagement and their commitment to community, and we’re excited to continue making impact together with another unique event!

Charity event at MANN+HUMMEL

If you missed the opportunity to volunteer in April, MANN + HUMMEL will be partnering again with United Way to host a private Pop Up Giving event.

Pop Up Giving – or PUG – is a fast-paced way to make an instant impact by giving together. MANN+HUMMEL will fund a donation pot, and three local nonprofit organizations will be invited to make a three-minute pitch about their programs or a specific project. Employees will listen, learn, and vote to determine which organization receives the money. Stay tuned for more information on the upcoming event!

A big THANK YOU to everyone who joined us for Pop Up Volunteering, and to MANN+HUMMEL for your partnership. Together we can Change The Story!