One of the highlights of the VPO/Simplex 2019 company picnic held in June was a public service project. Thirty adults and kids created Kindness Kits, which included assorted personal care products, for the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh (WC&S).
For more than 40 years, WC&S has been providing emergency shelter, safety, and support for women and their children experiencing the devastating effects of domestic violence, as well as offering legal advocacy, a 24-hour hotline, and support groups.
It was important for VPO to include a hands-on volunteer opportunity into this annual event, especially one that benefits women. VPO is not only a woman-owned business, it is entirely female run.
VPO Client Relations Manager Daisy Miksch planned both the picnic and this heartfelt activity. “We wanted employees and their families to experience and to be inspired by an act of public service,” she said. “We wanted the put the intent of our tagline, ‘building better, together,’ into action.”
Each Kindness Kit included a note from The Simplex Team and a handcrafted card, lovingly created that day by the group, ages one year and up. Some of these life-affirming messages were: “there is kindness and love in you and around you,” “treat yourself with kindness,” and “you have the strength to overcome.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly one in four women and one in seven men have experienced severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime.
VPO chose WC&S because, since 1974, they’ve effectively given access to a safe haven, legal counsel, and emotional assistance.
“Thousands of construction project managers use our software every day to make their lives easier. For a victim of domestic abuse, the simple act of getting on their computer and looking for resources can be a life-ending act because their partner is monitoring their internet usage,” said Laura Nee, president/CEO of VPO and its parent company, The Simplex Group. “We at VPO find it extremely disturbing to think that abusers can have that level of control over their partners’ digital lives.”
If you or someone you know is being victimized by emotional, physical, or financial abuse, call the WC&S hotline at 412-687-8005 or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.