Way Back Inn gives back to Corporate Housing leader ABODA
Transitional housing nonprofit awards company for 15 years of service
Redmond, WA – December 22, 2014 – What started as a graduate school class project at Seattle University transformed into 15 years of support between ABODA, a leading corporate housing firm, and the Way Back Inn, a local nonprofit that provides transitional housing.
It began when Dave Caple, President and CEO of employee-owned ABODA based in Redmond, attended a philanthropy class while pursing his MBA at Seattle University. There he learned about Way Back Inn and its mission. Little did he realize then that this chance meeting would make him a philanthropic matchmaker.
Caple had just joined ABODA as a its new VP of Operations, and he saw an opportunity with Way Back Inn to combine his business interest with his class project.
“Supporting a nonprofit that touches the world you know best – in our case housing – is the perfect fit to what we were being taught in class,” Caple said.
“ABODA helps major corporations transition their employees to a new market,” Caple explained, “while Way Back Inn helps homeless children and their families with transitional housing so they can rebuild their lives.”
Formed in 1991, Way Back Inn has already helped more than 1,500 children and their families by providing well-maintained transitional housing and services. They offer both a shorter-term, 90-day Transitional Housing program to provide a safe, livable home while the family looks for permanent housing options, a Long Term Housing program to provide a safe, comfortable place for the family while a parent is attending an accredited educational program, and rental and utility assistance to prevent a family from becoming homeless.
For ABODA, the program is part of its community service and philanthropic program called ABODA Cares. This corporately funded and employee-driven program has three major components that includes corporate giving, employee gift matching, and employee volunteerism.
“The objective of ABODA Cares,” explains Caple, “is to leverage the talents, skills, and resources of the company and employees to make a positive and long-lasting impact in our community and the local organizations our employee-owners choose to support.”
For example, since 1999, ABODA has worked with the Way Back Inn to transform the properties they have acquired that typically are in disrepair into a beautiful place to live.
“It’s on par with the executive suites they provide for companies like Amazon,” said Tonya Ward, Program Manager for Way Back Inn. “When people move in, they take one look around and it brings them to tears as these homes that ABODA renovates look so great.”
In a single weekend, a team of employee volunteers from ABODA repaint the entire home, inside and out, refinish flooring, make repairs and fully furnish an entire home, including all furniture and even housewares. This project happens once each year, and in the last 15 years, according to Vern Francis, ABODA has refurbished every single home that Way Back Inn has owned and managed.
Francis, who heads the maintenance department for Way Back Inn, is a long-time volunteer and board member of the nonprofit.
“We're ready to start over again,” said Francis, “as it's been more than a decade since some of these homes have been ABODA-cized.”
At its recent annual fundraising banquet, the Way Back Inn honored ABODA for its 15 years of continuous involvement, which has included thousands of volunteer hours and more than $150,000 in time, goods and services and financial support.
“ABODA employees do everything, from yard work and planting flowers to hanging paintings on the walls -- everything that is necessary to make a house, a home,” Francis added. Caple noted that this year 50 percent of ABODA employees volunteered for this effort.
ABODA supports volunteer hours and employee donations by matching them dollar-for-dollar. Last year, employees personally donated over hundreds of hours of their own time, which were matched by ABODA in financial contributions.
About Way Back Inn
Way Back Inn provides transitional housing to homeless families with children, helping them rebuild their lives, dignity, and self-confidence. Formed in 1991, Way Back Inn has provided transitional housing and services for over 1,500 children and their families. All homes are maintained, furnished and taken care of by some 35 volunteers. Learn more at http://www.way-back-inn.org.
ABODA is one of the nation’s largest corporate housing providers, helping America’s best-known brands with corporate, intern and relocation housing. As a leading provider of housing solutions, ABODA offers additional services including furniture sales and rental, property management, and cleaning services. ABODA properties meet the uncompromising standards of quality, comfort and service required by America’s leading corporations. Launched in 1988 and headquartered in Redmond, WA, ABODA is a certified member of the Corporate Housing Providers Association, Worldwide ERC, the Employee Relocation Counsel, the Society for Human Resource Management, and the Washington Multifamily Housing Association. Learn more about ABODA at www.aboda.com or call 1-888-389-0500.