Barbara Comstock Polaris 5k

On June 24, 2017, Blue Compass hosted a fun run 5K for Polaris, a 501 (c)3 non-profit organization that is dedicated to the fight against Human Trafficking. Polaris enlisted Blue Compass to help raise funds and more importantly raise awareness about realities of Human Trafficking in the U.S. and Internationally.

Runners Crossing the Finish Line

Runners cross the finish line at the 1st annual Freedom Happens Now 5K in Tysons Corner.

What is Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)? CSR is usually a term that describes the initiatives that a large company takes to take responsibility for the social or environmental impact they make as a result of their business. Sometimes these initiatives are forced on a large business to improve their public relations. Therefore, CSR does not usually apply to small businesses. However, Blue Compass creates good business practices as a small business so that these habits are inherently found in our business model. We can carry these practices into everything we do as we grow into a larger company. CSR is not a requirement, but something that employees seek for involvement and fulfillment.

Why did Blue Compass host a 5K fundraiser? It was an honor to work side-by-side with an important organization, such as Polaris. They operate the National Human Trafficking Hotline in the US and also help other countries to do the same. There is no doubt that their cause is important. However, Blue Compass is not in the business of hosting 5K events, so then, why did we do it? We felt a calling to do more than just write a check to Polaris. We wanted to contribute to the cause with the talents that we have, and also to encourage our peers to contribute to the cause. On event day, we saw more than 200 runners and several companies sign-up teams, including PwC, NeoSystems, LSG Landscape, and Cognitio. We also had a special guest speaker, Congresswoman Barbara Comstock, present a Congressional Record Plaque to Polaris for their significant contribution towards combating human trafficking.

Congressional Record

Congressional Record From Congresswoman Comstock

And what were the results for the company? Many people may wonder why an IT Strategy company wants to actively volunteer so much of their time and money towards a non-profit activity. Polaris is a great organization that we were already working with and helping a partner is always good business practice. Our small company of 12 employees also experienced team building as our team conducted a marketing and PR blitz to get the word out over social media and also in-person at local Tysons Corner businesses. Colleagues helped each other out without questions, especially in the weeks leading into the event as our event manager had to solicit Blue Compass colleagues to fill in for volunteers that didn’t show up to their time slots to haul water, manage the registration pickup, and many other tasks. Our Blue Compass team left the day with pride and fulfillment knowing that our company cares shares similar values about our local community and helping those that do not have a voice in protecting themselves. As a business owner, I’m proud of my team and the amount of effort they exerted in making this fundraiser successful.

Thank you to Polaris for the positive experience, all our sponsors, volunteers, and runners that made the 1st annual Freedom Happens Now 5K a success!! If you would like to see event pictures or stay tuned for the next 5K, follow @FreedomNow5K on Twitter or Facebook.

Corporate Social Responsibility is not just for large businesses and it does not need to start with the business owner. It starts with anyone that has a passion for something that is bigger than themselves. Join a cause today!