07 Dec 2012

Every Child Deserves a Christmas Morning Explodes!

December 07, 2012VM News

Every Child Deserves a Christmas Morning Explodes!

December 1st was a beautiful Saturday here in the Valley of the Sun. As usual, I headed out to the Phoenix Mountain Preserve for a hike. I started thinking about the people in New York and New Jersey who were affected by hurricane Sandy. Having never been through anything like it, I cannot begin to imagine what they are going through. Here I am hiking in 75 degrees under clear blue skies, looking forward to our company holiday dinner that evening and thinking about where and how I might find an ugly Christmas sweater for our party on Wednesday.

One Thought Leads to Another

As usual when I am hiking, one thought led to another. How are those poor people going to get through the winter without homes, reliable heat, food, clothing, etc.? Hmmm, maybe we need to make another donation to the Red Cross? Then I started to think about the kids. And Christmas! How in the world are some of those families going to even have a Christmas? Every kid should have Christmas! (Yes I am fully aware that not everyone believes in Christmas – but I do, and I love the holiday.)

I talked to my wife about it. By Sunday night we came up with an idea on how we could turn our ugly sweater contest at work into a charity event. Vertical Measures would donate to a charity based on people participating in an ugly sweater promotion. I started researching charities where I could be assured the donations would help get Christmas presents to those families hit by hurricane Sandy. That was not easy. On Monday I asked our awesome team for help in figuring this all out. By Wednesday we had a plan in mind. Yesterday morning we met and finalized it. We would donate monetarily to a charity which would benefit children during the Christmas holiday.

The Toys Will Make It To The Kids!

Toys for Tots LogoSarah discovered that Toys For Tots had a program in place to get toys to the exact area where I wanted them to go. Coincidentally a good friend of ours at Terralever contacted us to see if we wanted to participate in a toy drive they were doing. Everything started to fall into place – and fast. Our creative team came up with the image for us to post on Facebook. In the early afternoon our post went live. Vertical Measures would donate $5.00 for every person who shared the image, with a cap of $2,000.00 in case it went crazy. We spread the word a little to get the ball rolling and received a very favorable response.

The tipping point seemed to be when Rob Woods shared our image on the Black Friday website. We started receiving 100 shares every five minutes. Five hours after we launched the campaign we blew past our stated $2,000 limit (400 shares) with more than 1,000 shares. A few hours later we were over 8,000 shares and I decided to write this blog post. Obviously we are a small company and cannot cover $5.00 for every share at this point. But maybe this amazing community can help. If any of you are willing to make a contribution to this worthy cause, we will collect the money and add it to our donation on December 12.

Please Help Increase Our Total Contribution

If your organization makes a donation of $500 or more, we will add your logo with a link to this blog post. Plus we will add you to the Facebook post where this all started. If we receive $3,000 in commitments from other organizations, Vertical Measures will increase its contribution to $3,000. Just get in touch with us in the comments, email, DM or however, to let us know you want to participate.

Vertical Measures Donates $5 Per Facebook Share to Toys for Tots

We a owe a big thanks to these additional contributors, who have joined us in our efforts to bring some holiday joy to children this year! Through our partners below and VM’s increased contribution, we have raised more than $5,000 for Toys For Tots! Also, a big thank you to all of you who made individual donations. We couldn’t have made this happen without you!

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So how about we all join in to help make a nicer Christmas for all those kids whose lives have been turned upside down by Sandy?! Just hurry, we need your commitments by the end of the day on December 11.


  • James Svoboda Dec 07, 2012

    Awesome Arnie! Toys for Tots is my favorite charity and we’re even doing a toy donation to the program here in Minnesota this year as well. I’m so glad to see others supporting them as well. Best wishes to you an the Vertical Measures team!

  • Arnie Kuenn Dec 07, 2012

    Hi James – thanks for dropping by and glad to hear you are supporting it up in MN. We are pretty excited here by the overwhelming response on FB.

  • Rob Woods Dec 07, 2012

    We were more than happy to help. What’s the point of having a big audience if you can’t do something like this with it every once in a while? :)

  • Ashley Stultz Dec 08, 2012

    It is really great to see that someone is thinking of someone else. I try every year to donate to Toys for Tots because even though my family has fallen on hard times there is someone else out there worse off than we are. Bless you and have a wonderful Christmas this year! <3

  • Dennis Reilly Dec 08, 2012

    As I said on fb, how can you say no to that face – or any child, for that matter? My pockets are pretty much empty, if you tell me how to do it , I’ll give you $5 or $10.

  • Tammy Odette Dec 08, 2012

    THANK YOU for thinking of the kids. Like you this is one of my FAVORITE holidays. I act like a kid and I am 45 years old lol. The BEST part for me is giving to others though. I LOVE how it feels. My family WILL be donating. We would like to donate $100 at least. How do we get this to you?
    Thank you again sooooo much

    Tammy Odette

  • Arnie Kuenn Dec 08, 2012

    Hi Dennis and Tammy –
    Thank you for your kind words and interest in donating. I think the easiest way to go about it is to donate directly to Toys For Tots. If you visit their website, click on the donation area in the bottom left corner – http://www.toysfortots.org/

    Again, thank you for your support. So far we have commitment for more than $4,000 due to this effort!


  • Flo Bivens Dec 09, 2012

    Thank you so much..will go to Toys For Tots website to donate…your article has really exploded into a Big thing on facebook!! :-)

  • iGoByDoc Dec 17, 2012


    So glad you went out on a Hike on that Dec 1st day! What a great idea you came up with, and what a great charity to choose.

    I too love Christmas, and every child does deserve Christmas morning.

    Thank you for doing this, and I am glad we were able to be a part of it.

    Happy holidays to you, your staff, and all your family members.


  • Arnie Kuenn Dec 18, 2012

    Hi Doc! I’m glad every time I hike! :-)

    We appreciate your support and happy holidays to all of you too!