Communicating that work effectively to consumers. For example, at Hasbro, we focus on families and youth, and our Do Good from Home initiative challenged and engaged children through global communications efforts to give back.
As part of my series about “individuals and organizations making an important social impact”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Kevin Colman, Director of Global Philanthropy and Social Impact at Hasbro. Kevin is responsible for Hasbro’s global philanthropy which in 2019 included 12M dollars in total philanthropic support making an impact for more than 4M children around the world. Hasbro’s philanthropy works to stand up for children and create a world where every child experiences hope, kindness, and joy. Kevin oversees the Hasbro Children’s Fund which provides financial grants to child-focused nonprofits including key philanthropic partners such as Save the Children, Operation Smile and Give Kids the World, just to name a few. Kevin is also responsible for overseeing Hasbro’s Gift of Play program, donating toys and games to children in low income communities, and Team Hasbro the company’s employee volunteer program, empowering Hasbro employees to volunteer to support children in 40 countries around the world where Hasbro operates.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
I’ve been at Hasbro for eight years. I started in the nonprofit field on the fundraising side. I developed corporate giving and corporate philanthropy experience that led me to this global impact role at Hasbro.
At Hasbro, we have a wide reach and the ability to make a meaningful impact on families and children around the world in many ways. We support education, hunger relief, children in foster care and children impacted by disasters.
Our efforts in social impact utilize all the company’s assets to make that difference, and we’re able to give through grants, sponsorships and donations of toys and games. Hasbro also encourages our employees to give back. Last year we had 95 percent of employees engage in our corporate giving efforts. By utilizing all those assets, we are able to impact families and children on a global scale.
Can you share the most interesting story that happened since Hasbro began its Corporate Giving program?
Hasbro always makes an effort to be there when disasters strike. At the onset of the pandemic, we examined the greatest needs of children around the world.
We determine where children are in marginalized communities and support efforts that span across the country. Hunger has been a huge component throughout the pandemic. Children were also out of school or distance learning, and they needed educational resources. Toys and games also provide children comfort. We’ve been working with a number of organizations and have partnered with Save the Children and No Kid Hungry.
This is where Feed the Children came in. Since the pandemic began in March, the organization has been distributing educational and food resources. This past fourth quarter — and in time for the holidays — we jumped in to be able to give and donate to provide comfort and joy in these difficult times.
We also discovered that, in children’s hospitals throughout the country, kids were experiencing isolation with limited visitation in healthcare facilities. We partnered with Starlight Foundation and donated toys and games to their network of hospitals. Hasbro provided toys and games to 200 hospitals in 45 states in the Starlight Foundation network.
Can you describe how Hasbro is making a significant social impact?
Particularly through our philanthropic efforts, we give to children who need us the most in a variety of different ways. For many years we’ve worked with youth to use their own voice and give back.
Throughout the pandemic, people wanted to give. Do Good from Home was one of our programs to inspire youths and to empower them to make a difference in their communities — from delivering groceries to a neighbor to writing thank you notes to essential workers.
We partnered with Design for Change on Do Good from Home. Together, we amplified the message of engaging youth to make a social impact. We also provided 25,000 toys and games that were distributed to children of essential workers through the network of organizations for which Design to Change helps around the country, all the while engaging youth to give back to their communities.
Can you tell us a story about a particular organization that was impacted or helped by your cause?
This year’s holiday season has been unprecedented for toy donations, as Hasbro partners with hundreds of organizations across the country. This year, we’ve donated 1 million toys and games to Toys for Tots this holiday season. Overall this year, Hasbro donated more than 4 million toys and games to children and families around the world.
Hunger has emerged as a great need throughout the pandemic, and Feed the Children has supported that need for over forty years. When the request came in November, we immediately said yes. This holiday season, we provided 15,000 toys and games to Feed the Children to distribute to families along with boxes of nonperishable foods and essentials.
How does Hasro define corporate giving? Can you explain what you mean or give an example?
Hasbro has committed to making the world a better place for all children and all families. Our corporate giving and global philanthropic impact work aligns with that purpose.
We focus on youth issues including hunger, education, foster care and pediatric mental and physical health to make a meaningful difference in a variety of creative ways. By strategically using all of our assets through gants, toy donations and the time and talents of our employees, Hasbro strives to make the greatest impact possible.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.
1. Look at your financial resources available to give to communities.
2. Determine what in kind donations your company can give.
3. Engage your employees through corporate volunteer programs and events like Global Day of Giving.
4. Consider your company’s brands and how to engage with cause marketing and purpose-driven work. Find the most strategic way for your company to align directly with your corporate and giving work.
5. Communicating that work effectively to consumers. For example, at Hasbro, we focus on families and youth, and our Do Good from Home initiative challenged and engaged children through global communications efforts to give back.
Habro is a company of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
It’s important to let youth know that they have a voice and can make a meaningful difference. We’ve done a lot of work with youth service or engagement. Habro offers a unique way to inspire youth through our philanthropy.
How can our readers follow Hasbro on social media?
This was very meaningful, thank you so much. We wish you only continued success on your great work!