Over the course of this year, Lacey’s O Bee Credit Union donated over $50,000 to local charitable organizations through its combined Masks-for-Charity initiative and brewhouse t-shirt donations.
After witnessing the effects of COVID-19 on locals, O Bee searched for a way to help those struggling in the communities it serves. The state-wide mask mandate sparked an idea.
“We thought, why not offer our iconic Olympia, Rainier, and Pabst beer logos on masks in exchange for a small donation?” Lee Wojnar, VP of Marketing, said in a press release. “People were happy to donate. Now the masks are practically collectors’ items because they sell out so quickly.”
O Bee raised more money in six months through mask donations than it did over two years with its brewery t-shirts, Wojnar said.
To date, mask sales have brought in about $30,000 and t-shirts about $20,000. Many people offered well over the $5 suggested contribution, according to the press release. Soon after, O Bee began donating money to community organizations focused on helping those impacted by the pandemic.
O Bee has donated between $3,000 and $10,000 each to the following non-profits:
- Thurston County Food Bank & Nourish Pierce County. Both food banks faced shortages when a surge in demand doubled as more people relied on their services.
- Family Support Services. Among its many services, it operates Pear Blossom Place — a 24/7 family shelter in Olympia that was impacted by a fire in May displacing families already impacted by COVID.
- Little Red Schoolhouse. Little Red Schoolhouse provides school supplies, backpacks, and gently used clothes to students in need at the start of each school year.
- Homeless Backpacks. An organization committed to fighting food insecurity for homeless children and teens in local communities.
- The United Ways of the Pacific Northwest’s Wildfire Relief Fund. The fund helps those affected by the wildfires in the Pacific Northwest.
- Family Education and Support Services. Provides critical services to families to help keep children safe.
- Community Youth Services. Provides short- or long-term care for youth needing a safe, nurturing home.
- Olympia-Tumwater Foundation. A continuation of the Schmidt Family philanthropic legacy.