Sometimes traveling can help you understand the importance of what you do.
The PackMen taking our first trip outside of NYC to deliver 200 backpacks to disadvantaged youth in Tampa and St. Pete, Florida was an eyebrow raising experience.
Our GiveBackPack program has a life of its own. And that’s the best part - a New York bag drop will look totally different from a Florida bag drop, but somehow the engagement and learning remain just as effective to our participants.
The 60 minute GiveBackPack workshop, executed at two separate Boys and Girls Clubs, gave our youth a chance to enjoy themselves through dance, cheers and activities, while learning the building blocks of giving back. Perhaps the most powerful part of it all is when our participants understand that you do not have to be rich to give back, but living with the intangibles such as courage, health and acceptance can help put them in a position to succeed - something I enjoyed sharing with them about my journey and how staying true to those values got me where I am today.
I’ve learned that this experience has the ability to reach more than our children, but brings out the best in athletes and celebrities as well. Heisman Trophy winner, Super Bowl MVP, and ESPN analyst, Desmond Howard, became our first honorary PackMan. He dove right into the workshop, sharing his own experiences as a child and stood in front of the crowds as living proof that hard work, treating people with kindness and giving back will reep benefits down the road.
Desmond said it best when he told the kids, “Today, we are forever part of the STATE Bags team. One team, committed to making the world a better place for everyone.” STATE Bags is a company that has successfully found the key to longevity, because STATE is invested in more than just their bottom line, but in building community, family and a better world for our youth.
- Rick Wagner, STATE PackMan