Phoenix Children’s Hospital Foundation is gearing up for a September fundraising program it designed with the business community in mind. First and foremost, of course, is the goal of $1 million to support the hospital’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders — a critical pediatric focus, considering that every three-and-a-half minutes a child is diagnosed with cancer yet only 4 percent of federal funding is earmarked for childhood cancer research. But Go Gold aims specifically to involve the business community as part of National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. The flexible program allows businesses to “get behind it in whatever way makes sense for that business,” notes Tim Harrison, who, as director of cause-related marketing, oversees the hospital’s corporate relationships and partnerships.
The Arizona Diamondbacks are dedicating the game on September 17 to Go Gold, and doing what Harrison describes as “a lot of ‘gold’ activation.” Coulter Motor Co. on Camelback will donate a portion of every car it sells for that month. The T-shirt company State Forty Eight will sell a special “Go Gold” T-shirt. IHOP will change its “Silver Dollar” stack of pancakes to a “Golden Stack.” Clean Freak Car Wash will donate 10 cents from every car wash; Miracle Mile Deli, $1 from its signature sandwiches. Arizona Central Credit Union is among businesses that will sell bracelets or icons (papers that customers sign and businesses then commonly post on walls or windows to commemorate the donation). But selling an item is not the only way a business can support Go Gold. CenturyLink will include a message to its customers when it sends them their bill, and CityScape plans to turn the spotlight atop its tower gold throughout September.
“We were looking for ways to engage our corporate partnerships and build something they can get behind and feel they can make a difference,” Harrison says, sharing also, “We are trying to create a movement [with] potential to make it a national program others could take and adapt to their own market.” Appreciative of the fact that Phoenix Children’s Hospital is a very recognizable brand in our marketplace and enjoys a lot of support — especially if employers go to their employees and ask what charities are important to them — Harrison alludes to the “six degrees of separation” concept and observes, “Many people are, at most, only 4 degrees separated from the hospital.”
Through Go Gold activities, businesses can be PCH’s voice in the community. The activation comes through corporate partners letting their customers and employees know about the fundraising campaign and how they can get behind it.