PR News 2016 CSR Awards: Corporate-Community Partnership

Winners: Aspen Dental Management Inc. - The Healthy Mouth Movement and JetBlue Airways - 2015 Soar with Reading: Solving for Book Deserts

Aspen Dental Management Inc. - The Healthy Mouth Movement

The dentists and teams at Aspen Dental practices recognized the issue plaguing our nation’s veterans and decided to do something about it.

In April 2015, Aspen launched the second year of its Healthy Mouth Movement (HMM), a community-giving initiative to bring free oral healthcare to those in need. In 2015, HMM focused exclusively on providing free care to veterans through the following program components: (1) a nationwide, 30 stop “MouthMobile” Tour, (2) a National Day of Service (DOS) with participants from over 300 Aspen practices across the country, and (3) “A Smile for Your Service” (ASFYS) veteran salute program.

The core objective of HMM is simple: Bring veterans healthy smiles. Secondarily, HMM serves as a tangible way to demonstrate to media, consumers and stakeholders that patient care is at the heart of the Aspen Dental brand promise. This is accomplished not just through the campaign, but through the touching, personal stories of those receiving free care.

HMM used a combination of paid and earned tactics to garner strong media attention at the campaign forefront, but it was through the sharing of personal veteran stories and their road to oral health recovery that truly piqued and maintained the interest of media.

One way the campaign was executed was via the MouthMobile, a fully equipped dental office on wheels offering free dental care to veterans during its cross-country tour. Every stop treated over 20 veterans, pre-scheduled by local veteran organization partners. Aspen invited local reporters in each market to the event to meet veterans and dentists. Select veteran stories were captured prior to each stop, to be shared with media in advance. These compelling narratives and the dentists’ excitement to give back encouraged local outlets to share the feel-good pieces with readers and viewers.

So far in 2015 (as of October), the campaign provided 4,196 veterans $2,571,531 in free dental care and drove in new patients who were moved by what Aspen Dental is doing for our nation’s veterans.

JetBlue Airways - 2015 Soar with Reading: Solving for Book Deserts

As an airline, JetBlue has a responsibility to transport people from point A to point B, but it also wants to move people it touches in its business every day and inspire them to make the world a better place. In order to make a positive impact, JetBlue works to foster influential programs and connect communities within its areas of commitment: Youth & Education, Community and the Environment.

For the past four years, JetBlue been helping to build awareness about childhood literacy with the Soar with Reading program. JetBlue’s Soar with Reading program, launched in 2011, was designed to inspire and encourage kids’ imaginations to take flight through reading. The program’s goal is to get books into the hands of kids in need.

In its first four years, Soar with Reading had donated more than $1,250,000 worth of books. Building off of the 2014 campaign, JetBlue continued to work with partners--Random House Children’s Books, Magic Tree House author, Mary Pope Osborne and celebrity ambassador, Victoria Justice--to inspire a love of reading and help the mission.

Leveraging the fifth anniversary of the initiative as an opportunity to reinvigorate the program, JetBlue devised a strategy to develop a new, targeted pilot intervention program using free book vending machines, which received tremendous support both nationally, and in the community.

JetBlue dispensed free, age-appropriate books to children via vending machines. Based on the research, which found Washington, D.C. to be a devastating book desert (with only one book for every 830 kids), JetBlue launched the first-of-its-kind Soar with Reading book vending machine pilot program in the area and committed to bringing 100,000 new books to this community.

The 2015 program was ultimately a tremendous success, providing JetBlue with national recognition for this CSR initiative. The campaign garnered more than 564 million traditional earned media impressions and more than 107 million social impressions solely amongst media and education influencers.

Honorable Mentions:
• Belk and Discovery Education - Belk Service Learning Challenge
• Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health - Champions of Mental Health Awards and Mental Illness Awareness Week
• - Chevron Fuel Your School Program
• Frontier Communications - America's Best Communities
• International Sport and Culture Association - The economic cost of physical inactivity across Europe
• Lenovo Scholar Network - Empowering Future Tech Leaders
• MasterCard - Girls4Tech
• MWW - Building Blocks for the Future: Samsung Technology Partnership with Boys & Girls Clubs of America
• Nestle Waters North America - A Community Approach to Trash Free Waterways
• New York Life Foundation/Tiller, LLC - Addressing Grief at School
• Raytheon Company - National Engineers Week ‘Girl Day’ 2015
• SAIC - Give A Meal Team Challenge
• SAP - Education Initiative
• Teva Pharmaceuticals - Teva's Community Partnership Program