SOURCE: Chicago Charity Challenge

Winger Marketing

June 12, 2014 15:09 ET

The Chicago Charity Challenge Launches Inaugural Contest With 20 Teams

Employee-Powered Charity Competition Redefines Corporate Responsibility

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwired - June 12, 2014) - The Chicago Charity Challenge launches its inaugural charity competition this month with an innovative business/charity partnership format and a vision to redefine the term "corporate responsibility." Twenty Chicago-area companies have responded to the groundswell of interest that employees have in performing charitable service. The Chicago Charity Challenge (affectionately called the Chicago Cha Cha), provides a platform for businesses to partner with their favorite charities to raise funds, volunteer time, and vie for five awards ranging from $5,000 - $10,000, which will be donated to the charities of the winning teams.

Some of the 2014 Challenge teams include: Discover and Big Brothers Big Sisters, Fannie May and Park Lawn, Golub & Company and Chicago Botanic Garden, Groupon and Cure Violence, Kolcraft and March of Dimes, Mars and Greater Chicago Food Depository, Quaker and Common Threads, and Starbucks and Concordia Place. For a complete list of participants visit the Challengers page at www.chicagochacha.org.

The Chicago Charity Challenge is a 501(c)(3) charity and grew out of the giveback program created by the employees of Call One, a Chicago-based telecommunications solution provider and Founding Sponsor of this year's Challenge. Since 2008, Call One employees have chosen and supported a local charity, strengthened their company culture, and had a great time.

"Last year, while planning our giveback program, our team had an epiphany," stated Craig Foster, CEO of Call One. "We asked each other what would happen if we inspired our clients to choose a charity too?" This idea quickly morphed into the Chicago Charity Challenge, founded on the hope of inspiring business leaders throughout Chicago. "We realized we could reach many more charities through other employees who shared our passion," Foster added.

"The Chicago Charity Challenge inspires team building and a sense of empowerment for employees," said Susan Hahn, Executive Director of the Chicago Charity Challenge. "A commitment to positive social impact has long-term benefits to both businesses and our community. The economic value to companies that provide employees with strong corporate philanthropy programs has been demonstrated by numerous studies." 

Leveraging a unified vision to inspire employees to give back through participation in an annual competitive challenge, the Chicago Cha Cha has outlined five sponsored awards for the program. Challengers will track their employees' time and donations to compete for a Grand Prize Give Back Award of $10,000 for their charity. Other awards the Challenge teams will vie for include four $5,000 gifts in the following categories: Philanthropic Award, Helping Hand Award, Community Impact Award, and Issue Impact Award.

The competition runs through December 31, 2014 and team entries for the year are closed. However, wide-spread participation is encouraged. The public can participate in an online auction, which will launch at 10:00 AM on June 16, 2014 and continue for six weeks. Challenge teams will auction off an item each week to raise money for their respective worthy causes. To join in the fun this year or to reserve your organization's spot in the 2015 Chicago Cha Cha, visit www.ChicagoChaCha.org.

Founding Sponsor Call One is providing technical and administrative support and funding start-up costs for the Chicago Charity Challenge. Award money for the $10,000 Grand Prize Give Back Winner will be raised by its employees. Other award sponsors include MB Financial Charitable Foundation and Avaya. Support will also be provided by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business Social Enterprise Initiative. 

About Chicago Charity Challenge

Established in 2014, the Chicago Charity Challenge (affectionately called the Chicago Cha Cha), provides area businesses with a platform to support employee volunteer and fundraising efforts. Businesses partner with their favorite local charities to compete for five monetary prizes. This year, twenty teams are paired to compete in the inaugural Chicago Cha Cha. For more information call 312-506-5006 visit www.chicagochacha.org. Keep current with event announcements and more on http://www.facebook.com/ChicagoCharityChallenge and follow us on Twitter @ChicagoChaCha.

About Call One

Established in 1992, Chicago-based Call One is dedicated to providing premium communications services at competitive rates. The company was the first telecommunications provider certified as a Competitive Local Exchange carrier by the Illinois Commerce Commission and has since grown to become one of the nation's largest providers of voice, data, and internet services and systems. Call One is proud to be endorsed as the preferred telecommunications vendor by Illinois' leading industry and government trade associations. Call One has been named to Crain's "Fast Fifty", Inc. magazine's "500/5000", ICIC and Fortune Magazine's "Inner City 100" and is recognized as a workplace of excellence by the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. Learn more at www.callone.com, www.Facebook.com/callonechicago, or Twitter @CallOneConnect.

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