Teal, Becker & Chiaramonte, CPAs, P.C. (TBC) donates and participates in a number of fundraisers for different charities throughout the year. For the month of March, the charity selected to receive funds raised during the ‘TBC Gives Back’ program for Dress Down Fridays was the Ronald McDonald House. TBC employee, Tina Suhocki, brought about the idea in part because the school that Tina’s son attends decided to do a fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald House.
To Tina, raising money was more than just a way to increase awareness of the Ronald McDonald House. While the school set a goal for each student to raise $100, Tina is ambitious and motivated. She set a goal for herself to raise much more, setting the bar upwards to $500-$1000, and enlisted the help of her colleagues at TBC to reach it.
Tina is especially moved by this cause because the Ronald McDonald House has previously helped her through her son’s illness, which she and her husband became aware of in 2005. The Ronald McDonald House is a temporary home away from home where families of children being treated for serious illnesses can reside while the child receives treatment. These homes provide a safe haven for not only families in the Capital Region, but individuals who travel from neighboring states such as Massachusetts, Vermont, Connecticut, etc., to bring their child to Albany Medical Center for treatment. The stays in these homes are often free of charge and include food and other assistance as well, which not only makes the families feel at home, but takes some of the stress off of them during a difficult time.
“From personal experience, I can tell you that this is a wonderful and worthwhile organization”, Tina says. The Suhocki family has personally stayed at several Ronald McDonald homes while traveling for their son’s illness to places such as Cincinnati, Philadelphia, and Burlington. Tina says being there with her son gives him the support he needs, and the Ronald McDonald House does an amazing job providing for the families who need them. Keeping her family close was a priority for Tina, and with help from the Ronald McDonald House, this was possible for the Suhocki family while receiving the best treatment for their son.
In addition to this fundraiser, Tina helps to raise awareness in ways other than just donating money. Since 2005, she has kept a jar in her office to collect pull tabs from soda cans from others at TBC. The funds generated by collecting these tabs can help to offset the housing expenses for the Ronald McDonald House. She also donates a portion of the tabs to Shriner’s Children’s Hospital, a cause which has also made a difference for her family throughout treatment of her son’s illness.
“It is a pretty humbling experience working for a company that helps with fundraisers, there are a lot of generous people here”, said Suhocki. “Overall, I believe it is important for companies to give back to the community they are serving, and I believe TBC has the same mindset.”