An Austin organization that works to strengthen families through education, therapy and family support services recently received an updated childcare and meeting room as a result of a makeover from IKEA Round Rock. Any Baby Can was awarded $10,000* in products, services and donations from IKEA as part of the national IKEA Life Improvement Co-worker Challenge.
Any Baby Can was one of three local organizations competing for the local honor. IKEA co-workers nominated and encouraged others to vote on local projects. Across the country, 36 stores and two service offices nominated local community projects from furnishing homeless shelters to renovating children’s play areas. A total of approximately $500,000 worth of furnishings, services, design and manpower from IKEA was donated nationwide.
Staff members at Any Baby Can say the makeover has vastly improved not just the appearance but the functionality of the space. Executive Director Margi Preston says, “IKEA gave us so much more than furniture and paint. The redesign of our conference room provides an inspirational space for community classes and meetings. The creation of a new childcare area allows us to better engage and teach children while their parents attend Any Baby Can educational classes. The IKEA redesign rejuvenated the building – and the energy – of Any Baby Can.” It took IKEA co-workers three days to transform the space. IKEA Round Rock Store Manager Gerd Diewald said, “IKEA is committed to creating a better everyday life for the many. Our co-workers found it really inspiring to be able to help this organization that does so much to improve the lives of children and families in Central Texas.”
The Life Improvement Co-worker Challenge received over 80 proposals from IKEA co-workers. A steering committee from each store then selected up to three organizations for consumers and co-workers to vote online atwww.thelifeimprovementproject.com in March and early April. Over 47,000 votes were cast and the winning charities were announced on April 10th. A total of 38 community projects will be supported by IKEA.
This challenge is part of the third year of IKEA’s “Life Improvement Project”, which offers consumers inspiration and suggestions to help them make a positive impact on their homes and lives within. Through this year-long initiative, IKEA is encouraging people to share projects of what they do to improve their lives at home, and to learn from the life improvement tips of others, from saving time through better organization to reducing bills by changing to energy-efficient light bulbs.
IKEA strives to be ‘The Life Improvement Store,’ and since its 1943 founding in Sweden, has offered home furnishings of good design and function, at low prices so the majority of people can afford them. There are currently more than 320 IKEA stores in 38 countries, including 38 in the U.S. IKEA, the world’s leading home furnishings company, incorporates sustainable efforts into day-to-day business and supports initiatives that benefit children and the environment. For more information, go to IKEA-USA.com.
*$10,000 of product plus design expertise time