The Cheerios team at General Mills was onto something when they launched the #GoodGoesRound campaign. They tapped into the belief that better communities—stronger communities, healthier communities, kinder communities—start with small acts of goodness. When Cheerios and Ellen DeGeneres teamed up to kick off the campaign and inspire ‘1 Million Acts of Good,’ General Mills reached out to MATTER to help activate this message with their employees.
With less than two weeks to Ellen’s launch of 1 Million Acts of Good campaign at their World Headquarters, General Mills was presented with an opportunity to respond to the urgent need in Puerto Rico after the hurricane hit.
“When you have an idea, move like the wind.” This statement, positioned on a long corridor at General Mills World Headquarters in Golden Valley, became a mantra and profound backdrop to the impact being created. In a flurry of creativity, innovation and good old-fashioned hustle, the Cheerios and MATTER teams developed a General Mills-inspired MATTERbox in response to the growing crisis of food and water shortage in Puerto Rico. Teams from Cheerios, Nature Valley, Larabar, Bugles and Annie’s all contributed large quantities of food items toward the massive relief effort.
General Mills employees rallied in a spirit of volunteerism to pack MATTERboxes filled with nutritious food and hand-written ‘YOU MATTER’ notes of support and inspiration for the people of Puerto Rico. This effort would build up to 5,000 MATTERboxes packed with Cheerios and more than 100,000 other healthy snacks to be distributed to hurricane victims in Puerto Rico.
“In the midst of recovering from a natural disaster, we know that people are desperately in need of convenient, ready- to-eat food,” said Mary Jane Melendez, Executive Director of the General Mills Foundation. “General Mills volunteers are thrilled to partner with Cheerios and MATTER to pack thousands of MATTERbox Snack Kits for those in need.”
The story could have ended there, but General Mills wouldn’t be a world class company without going the extra mile in execution and implementation. As shipping containers piled up at Puerto Rican ports with delayed distribution, it seemed that the much need food and supplies wouldn’t actually make it to the people who needed it most. The Cheerios team continued to dig deep to solve problems and provide solutions, networking to find and fund a series of private jets to provide direct distribution of the food and water their team had helped acquire and assemble.
This is what happens when a Minnesota company engages the best of its resources, talent and effort to make an impact in the community. We believe that a world full of ‘Companies that MATTER’ like General Mills would be a much better place, inspiring 1 Million Acts of Good and dreaming up big ideas that move people toward a healthier life.