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Equal Opportunity Encourager

What’s a model? A model. When I think of that term, I think of my sisters’ crushes back in the day on men like Tyson Beckford. I don’t compare myself to them. Maybe we could just say they’re all paid models and I’m a bit different since my time has all been donated. In terms of how many times I’ve been in pictures, I’ve lost track. There were brochures for schools, images for work, and candid pics for extra curriculars.

Some people may be new to these blog posts, so I’ll provide a reminder. With my posts I must be 100% open and honest. So here we go - the real reason I was asked to be in those photos: diversity.

These days being able to show a company’s, school’s, and/or group’s diverse cultural makeup can be a tipping point. If you watch commercials on television when they’re trying to show how a company cares, you’ll often see a wide array of people. For example, here are some images from those Chick-Fil-A commercials.

Great marketers make sure they have a diverse composition.

Based on my experience being in those photos where we had a black, white, and can’t tell person “walking and talking,” I learned diversity is important for appealing to consumers and attracting the target audience.

All those thoughts and ideas came to mind when I was reviewing our revised website. Before we made the transition from our original platform to the new Wix platform with more content, I got a behind-the-scenes preview. I provided HUNDREDS of pictures (and there were lots of conversations about HIPAA and parental agreement, so I was glancing around

for that), but I was originally caught off guard when I noticed this picture.

For the most part, we have pictures that people have sent us via email or social media. We have pictures of cards, children, families and staff throughout our social media profiles and website, but on this occasion we included a stock photo to convey a diverse group of students. The team didn’t want to show any type of favoritism. Favoritism? Borrowed diversity? I understand that was a specific photo we needed, but with this post I want to briefly highlight that thankfully we’re reaching a wide array of people. Based on the composition we don’t need to borrow any type of pictures for our social posts to create some of the images that you’ll see in ads today.

First, nothing’s new. Here’s a screenshot from our Instagram account a few years ago that shows some of our artists. They didn’t know each other, but they’re all contributors to the diverse display.

Whether we reposted individuals who tagged us or photos of corporate events, there was a diverse makeup – ranging from a stuffed animal to a board room.

If we look at the pictures from a recent quarter, we’ll notice that this pattern has continued with some of our deliveries. We’re not in control of these photos, so this is totally random on our end. Here are some examples:

Thankfully, that diverse collection continues with some of our recent sets of artists as well.

Photos from artists:

I understand there are some people who may look at the above pictures and understand that we don’t discriminate at all in terms of who makes cards and/or who receives them. We’re 100% open. We’re sharing the love across the globe. There may be some people who think, “Yes, okay, so Ike’s not racist or sexist, but he is hashtagist/conditionist.” Okay, that may be true. I admitted before – in the past when I was looking to make special deliveries, I did look strictly for hashtags such as #seizuressuck. In addition, the Cardz for Kidz Instagram account is following a couple more epilepsy accounts (e.g. epilepsypositivity).

On the other hand, based on the mutual understanding, there’s often a mutual reward. For example, with Epilepsy Positivity I shared my story via the Cardz for Kidz account and that’s how we got connected to the Arizona Burn Center/Valleywise Health. What started off as an epilepsy connection between two overcomers grew to encouraging kids throughout that medical center. Now we use and search for all types of hashtags. In addition, we partner/shipped thousands of cards to nonprofit organizations, such as Make-A-Wish, that likely do not include as many epilepsy patients. These days, Cardz for Kidz is diverse in that aspect as well.

Thankfully we’ve had a wide variety of artists join in to help us encourage all the children/patients, families, and staff we can reach. Based on the pictures, feedback, and firsthand experience, I know that we’re encouraging a wide variety of people. Unlike many groups who need to stage their diversity, thankfully we don’t. Ours comes naturally since we’re an EQUAL OPPORTUNITY ENCOURAGER (EOE).

  • Since we’re delivering uplifting handmade cards and entertainment systems on a quarterly basis, you could say we’re providing: Engaging/Encouraging Opportunities Consistently (EEOC).

  • In addition, one of our baselines will forever be Distributing Equal Inspiration (DE&I).

p.s. sorry for all the pictures in this post!

To see more pictures and stories, please check out our Facebook page; follow us on Twitter and Instagram; visit our LinkedIn and Great Nonprofit pages! Also, check out some of our videos on YouTube!


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