Vincent Lighting Systems' has just launched the first Behind the Scenes Workplace Giving Campaign to help industry members in need. Vincent Lighting’s philosophy has always included giving back to the entertainment technology industry, often through many hours of volunteer service by Paul Vincent and his staff.

With offices in Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati to coordinate, the first step was to appoint a champion for the program. Enter Kim Craigie, a longtime employee, who agreed to take on the challenge. Behind the Scenes provided Kim with a Fundraising Coordinator Toolkit that gave her all the materials she needed to launch and run a successful campaign including posters, brochures, sample thank you letters and ideas for fundraising activities. Next came company meetings in each location to explain the program and how employees could contribute, including automatic payroll deduction. Kim commented, "The toolkit is indispensable. In addition to posters and brochures, it provides wonderful ideas for a variety of fundraising activities and gives helpful hints in coordinating them. The CD includes an animated logo for our website and templates, which allow me to easily print donation forms and receipts. I frequently find myself reaching for the toolkit for inspiration." You'll find Kim staffing The ESTA Foundation booth at LDI2006 where she'll be happy to share tips about running a Behind the Scenes giving campaign.

Not to be outdone by his employees, Paul Vincent announced that the company would match all employee contributions dollar for dollar for the first $1,000 raised each year. An early supporter of Behind the Scenes, Paul felt it was important for the company to provide a way for his employees to help their colleagues in distress.

"There is no shortage of worthy causes, but none as closely related to our industry as Behind the Scenes. People are willing to give, but are often distracted because they have so many other activities vying for their attention. We want to make it easy for our team members to give as little or as much as they can, to a cause that could, someday, give back to them. We hope that none of us would ever need to apply for a grant, but it's good to know that Behind the Scenes is there, just in case," said Paul.

The fundraising coordinator toolkits can be used to launch giving campaigns wherever industry professionals gather—in offices, backstage, at union halls, or even virtual meeting places. You can order toolkits by calling 212-244-1421, emailing info@estafoundation.org or online. You never know when you, or one of your colleagues, might need the assistance Behind the Scenes can provide.

Behind the Scenes is an initiative of The ESTA Foundation to provide industry members with financial support when they are seriously ill or injured.