Joe and I first started Cottonseed Cares, our philanthropic program, in 2020 when we were celebrating our 5th year in business. The traditional 5th anniversary gift is wood because it is durable and long-lasting. A tree is a symbol of strength and wisdom. As partners in business and marriage, these characteristics are rooted deep in our hearts. Seeing as most of our products are created from wood, it just made perfect sense to team up with OneTreePlanted.org to plant trees for orders. We take wood out of the earth, and now we are putting wood back in the earth.
With the help of all of you and OneTreePlanted, we planted 2500 trees in 2020. Those trees are now growing in California, the Appalachia Region and Florida. We got to select the regions where our trees were planted. Having the opportunity to visit Muir Woods in 2016, we have an appreciation for the pure majestic beauty and peacefulness we felt among the 500-800 year old redwoods. We also continue to be inspired each summer by the trees on the mountain sides of Western North Carolina. The time we spend recharging there motivates our creativity and gets us ready for the busy holiday season. And Florida, well that’s home. Most people think of palm trees when they think of Florida, but we have so many more tree types here. Magnolias, Slash Pines, and Jacarandas are just a few.
In 2021, we wanted to expand Cottonseed Cares to do more. In remembrance of the 20th anniversary of September 11th, we became a proud supporter of the Tunnel to Towers Foundation. As a 3rd generation firefighter family, the positive impact this foundation has hits close to home and heart. For the entire month of September, we donated 10% of all sales to T2T. Our official total was $345 in just one month to benefit fallen and injured first responders and military service members.
Tunnel to Towers provides mortgage-free homes to the families of fallen first responders and gold star military families, as well as smart homes for injured service members so they can live their life more independently. The people who benefit from T2T’s efforts have sacrificed so much for the freedoms we all enjoy in the United States of America. And because we are patriots and have a great love for our country, this is just another way The Cottonseed Marketplace can give back.
But we didn’t forget about the trees. In 2021, we planted an additional 2100 trees throughout the United States. We picked Appalachia and Florida again this year and will let you all know when those saplings are planted in the next few months.
In addition to national programs, OneTreePlanted and Tunnel 2 Towers, we also support numerous local organizations and area schools. Silent Auctions, BINGO nights and golf tournaments are just a few ways we get involved locally. It’s important to us to have a deep-rooted connection in our community. Getting to meet customers while at markets in Arrow, our Airstream mobile marketplace has been so great. We can’t wait to go to more places with Arrow and get to share her with more of you in the Tampa Bay area. #FollowOurArrow
Looking at our plans for 2022, you can expect more trees, more silent auction gift baskets, and support for T2T. We plan on some online auctions of our own too, so keep an eye out for that. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and become an email subscriber by joining The Cottonseed Connection.
Thanks so much for your continued support, we couldn't do this without you!