heartSo, here we are at the beginning of another new year. The top ten lists of best [insert topic here] of 2010 are published and we’re all forging ahead with plans for 2011. Before we get too far into the New Year, I did want to take a moment to highlight some great charitable giving that happened in the AV community during 2010.

In early 2010, AVI-SPL conducted a fund drive for Haiti earthquake disaster relief. The company pledged to match employee donations dollar-for-dollar up to $15,000. The good folks at AVI-SPL ended up donating just shy of $20,000 to the American Red Cross.

In Spring of 2010, OmniMount started (mounted? – haha) a month-long campaign to collect gently used bras for The Bra Recyclers called BRAvo. This organization recycles bras to provide women in need with this basic lingerie staple that most of us take for granted. By month-end, Omnimount collected 1,550 bras.

At InfoComm 2010 in June, the AV community banded together to raise over $3,000 to benefit the Gulf Restoration Network. The premise? To ask people at the show to give us their spare change. The “Change for the Gulf” effort was based on idea I had while talking to my husband Rich, and blossomed into a fund raising effort supported by nearly a dozen participants and major donors, including Projector Lamp Services, Marketing Matters, Bontronics, Biamp, OmniMount, Social4Media, Cisco’s Gary Hall, Rational Acoustics, Middle Atlantic, Fulcrum Acoustic, AVI-SPL, Digital Projection, AVAD, and Draper.

Throughout the course of the year, systems integrator Advanced AV in Pennsylvania “sent clothing to Haiti, gave money to an autism group, donated throughout the year to the Chester County Foodbank (produce from our gardens and nonperishable items), made lunches for Safe Harbor once a month, gave toys to the hospitalized children at AI DuPont, and just sent some food to the Salvation Army,” according to their marketing director.

And in October 2010, Omnimount raised $3,700 for the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer event. They assembled a corporate team of more than 50 employees, partners, family and friends for their fund raising effort.

These efforts listed above are in addition to the individual acts of kindness I hear about on a regular basis, like volunteering one’s time and energy to a non-profit or giving blood for local blood drives. People in our industry have big hearts. I can’t wait to see what you’ll accomplish in 2011.

(P.S. Have some charitable giving plans for this year? Let me know and I will highlight them on this blog. Did a charity event in 2010 and want some kudos? Leave the details in the comments section of this post.)