At Macy’s, Inc., giving back is a core component of our culture. We strive to have a positive impact on the communities we serve and Macy’s remains committed to supporting the Parkland, Florida, and Las Vegas communities on their journeys to recovery following the tragic events at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival and Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
In the wake of these unthinkable tragedies, our company quickly responded by asking, “How can we give back to the specific needs of these communities, and how can we do so quickly, sensitively and effectively?” The result was personal and meaningful.
In support of the Vegas community following the events of Oct. 1, 2017 at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival, Macy’s funded five “Vegas Strong” scholarships. Three of these scholarships were awarded to students seeking a career as a first responder and two were given to dependents of first responders seeking a post-secondary degree in Nevada.
“The $50,000 gift was funded by Macy’s and, through the ‘Vegas Strong’ recipients, honored all the heroes from that October day,” said Lisa Allen, Macy’s Las Vegas District Merchant. “Being embedded in our communities is at the heart of Macy’s. And when our community is hurting, we look for meaningful ways to help.”
Through a $50,000 scholarship fund, Macy’s, in partnership with Broward Education Foundation, presented 17 students impacted by the Parkland tragedy with two-year college scholarships during a special presentation on May 30, 2018.
On Sunday, July 15, Macy’s Fort Lauderdale Galleria hosted seven of the 17 Macy’s and Broward Education Fund scholarship recipients in-store to shop for their post-grad attire, courtesy of Macy’s, before store hours. We also invited the parents to attend and gifted each with a gift card and goodie bag. Macy’s customers and employees also got involved and raised more than $100,000 through a round-up campaign to benefit the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Victims’ Fund, managed by the Broward Education Foundation. Customers throughout the state of Florida rounded their purchases to the nearest dollar (up to $.99) and donated their change. These funds provided relief and financial support to the victims and their families.
In addition to Macy’s partnership with the Broward Education Foundation, we also donated $5,000 for school supplies, partnered with Cigna to offer counseling and relief to the community, and sent banners of support to the Parkland community from teams around the country.
“Macy’s was one the very first companies that reached out in support of our heartbroken community,” said Shea Ciriago, executive director of Broward Education Foundation.
Shaun Robins, vice president store manager at the Florida Galleria store in Fort Lauderdale, lives only a mile from Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School (MSD). “My kids go to the elementary school around the corner and are slotted to go to MSD for high school. When the tragedy hit the Parkland community, our Macy’s team immediately met to figure out how we could respond specifically to what the community was asking for.”
Robbins added that social media was a big tool in figuring out what those impacted by the tragedy specifically needed. “As a company, the listening that we did for this community made our give back personal and meaningful. It wasn’t just giving back; it was taking the time to understand very local needs before we made decisions – and putting those decisions into action very quickly.”
The Macy’s team at Coral Square wrapped their arms around one family who had lost their 14-year-old brother, son and grandson in the MSD tragedy. Family members had jumped on flights as soon as they heard the news of the shooting, some arriving to Florida without suitcases, and also faced the financial strain of an unexpected funeral. The local Macy’s team invited the family into its store and provided outfits for the funeral.
The Macy’s store in Boca Raton, Florida, reached out to an MSD student, wanting to make her feel beautiful at her prom. The team went above and beyond to personalize her shopping experience. They opened the store an hour early, brought in a stylist to offer advice on her prom attire, and had a professional team do her makeup for prom.
Salma Lemongello, market vice president for the Macy’s South Florida District, also lives close to MSD high school and was deeply involved in the special prom experience, as well as many other local giveback efforts. “The true meaning of Macy’s commitment to community became my reality after the shooting at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School,” shared Lemongello. “As a resident of Parkland, my reality was what others were watching on the news. The names and pictures of the victims broke all of our hearts into a million pieces. We knew these kids and teachers. This was personal, sad and very scary. I was in awe of how quickly Macy’s as a brand took on a leadership role in the Parkland community. I give my heartfelt thanks to Macy’s for such sensitive and personal support during this horrific time and I know many Parkland residents share that same sentiment.”
Robbins also shared his pride in our company’s values and response in Parkland. “I’m proud to work for a company that invests in what matters to its local communities. Giving back isn’t just one of our values; it’s engrained in our culture and in our behavior as a company.”