We've always believed in the contagious power of good. But we also believe in the contagious power of giving. Think about it: the entire "pay it forward" movement is based on being contagious. One person does a good deed, the recipient of that deed does something nice for someone else and it just keeps on going.
That couldn't have been more true for our experience with the Red Rover #WingsForAMonth Challenge. You see, back on Super Bowl Sunday, Scott took a survey about random facts of the game. He has to guess how long the national anthem would last, who might score first and what the final score might be, just to name a few.
He took the survey minutes before kickoff and didn't even mention it to Lauren. Fast forward a few days and Scott received an e-mail that he was the WINNER. His prize: a $200 gift card to Buffalo Wild Wings. This is where the idea of #ContagiousGiving began. Scott loves wings but knew he didn't need $200 or a month's worth of them. So instead he began to brainstorm possible ways to give the wings away.
That's where the Carpenter Art Garden came into the picture. You see, Lauren volunteers at the garden and has told their story before. In three years they have transformed five properties on Carpenter Street into livable spaces. This includes an art garden, two indoor community spaces, and two vegetable gardens. Not to mention the countless volunteers who help make the programs, tutoring and life experiences possible. It's truly an amazing place.
So, if you haven't figured it out by now, the Carpenter Art Garden was chosen to receive the free wings. We organized the lunch during their spring break week. They had been taking field trips all week and on this particular day they were headed to a movie. But not without a stop at Buffalo Wild Wings beforehand.
Scott arrived ahead of time and ordered more than 80 wings, french fries, fried pickles and soda. It was a wonderful party, captured by several news outlets.
But that's not the end of the story. In fact, the story really isn't about Scott giving away his wings. It's about GIVING in general. It's about calling others to action. Hence #ContagiousGiving.
So, are you feeling inspired? Well, there's a way to give back. This summer we will expand our programs to create a mosaic art park on a blighted lot (corner of Mimosa and Carpenter). This project will bring public art to be enjoyed by all of Memphis in the Binghampton community in partnership with local mosaic artists and Binghampton community members. You can donate to their cause here. And be sure to use the hastag #ContagiousGiving.
Remember it only takes one small act to spring others into action. And though it may not change the world right away, it can make a difference.
Give it a try.
“You can’t live in Memphis without some kind of side hustle, right?” That's how the Memphis Daily News cover story started.
Last week, Lauren was featured in "Five to Watch," an article about creative entrepreneurs in Memphis.
The article features the story of how Lauren's "side hustle" turned into a full time job. The article also talks about Lauren's first Ignite Memphis talk called "Contagious Storytelling: How one story can change the world." Lauren didn't realized it at the time, but that may have been the beginning of Forever Ready Productions.
In the article Lauren says: “It started as me making videos for nonprofits, because I found a lot of nonprofits didn’t have enough resources to tell their own story. That grew into a demand for someone to turn around fast stories for them. … I’ve been working both jobs for quite some time now, and there are a lot of similar things to the life of a reporter. I’m working on multiple things at one time, and I’m still telling stories – I’m just telling those stories in a more positive way, in a more call-to-action kind of way.”
Read the full article here: https://www.memphisdailynews.com/news/2016/mar/19/five-to-watch/
(Photos: Memphis News/Andrew J. Breig)