Dear Mr. Market:
You’re notorious for beating up investors and making even the brightest and the best mind on Wall Street feel broken. Next week a group of regular guys will be making an investment that will also beat them up…but in a different way and for a higher purpose. We would like to take a few moments to share something that is much bigger than the market…giving back and making a difference in other people’s lives!
As a firm we have always taken pride in the fact that we give back not only monetarily but more importantly with our time and energy. We prefer to roll our sleeves up and get our hands dirty rather than simply writing a check and walking away. Last year we decided to take our game to a new level – we created a team of individuals to raise funds and awareness for charities and compete in Ironman Arizona (2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike ride and then a 26.2 mile marathon run – that is 140.6 miles, all in one day!). Sure, there are plenty of financial firms that support some very impressive foundations but how many put their time, money and actual bodies on the line?
Our journey began the weekend of November 17, 2013 as Team My Portfolio Guide (Team MPG) gathered in Tempe, AZ. We volunteered at an aid station helping athletes as they completed the biking portion of their 140.6 mile race. After that day each member of Team MPG began training and raising funds for a charity of their choice. The amount of hours spent in training are enormous but what carries even more of an impact is the story behind each athlete and the impact that these charities have made in both their individual and family’s lives!
After our team completes Ironman Arizona on November 16th we will be presenting the following charities with the funds we have raised to help them with their mission statements:
Camp Hope – One of our team members lost his sister in a tragic car accident in 2009. His 6 year-old niece attended this camp and this amazing group allowed her to realize she wasn’t alone as she grieved the loss of her mother. The camp focuses on children, ages 6 – 17, who have experienced the loss of a significant loved one.
American Cancer Society – After competing at the highest levels in college one of our members found himself faced with questions regarding his own health and future. Sitting in a cancer center and fighting back tears as he looked into the eyes of his family he realized he wanted to make a difference. This charity hits home for us as well since we’ve lost several clients to cancer.
Prader-Willi Syndrome Association – This team member’s 14 year-old niece battles this disease every day of her life. Imagine your body always feeling as though it was starving even if you had just eaten! This association is looking for ways to “Stop The Hunger” and advance research in this chromosome disorder.
PheoParaTroopers Foundation – Over the last several years this team member’s entire family has felt the impact of a genetic condition that causes tumors to aggressively grow. His brother and sister have both been diagnosed with this condition and have had numerous surgeries and procedures. This group supports in the research and raising awareness for this condition.
Challenged Athletes Foundation – triathlons are often viewed as a ‘selfish sport’, often associated with a mindset of me, myself and I! This team member is supporting a group that allows people with physical disabilities to pursue an active lifestyle through physical fitness and competitive athletics.
The American Red Cross – This team member has supported the Red Cross efforts for years. This amazing group not only offers domestic relief but also focuses on five other areas: service for the needy, support for the military and their families, collection and distribution of blood products, educational programs and international relief/development programs.
Honeybones – Imagine being an active 33 year-old and facing a battle with cancer and being told you need hip replacement surgery? This team member brings an international element to our team as he is from England and recently completed Ironman Sweden! He created and helps lead this foundation that focuses on joint and bone related issues.
National Fallen Firefighters Foundation – Our team member supporting this foundation already had a full plate with becoming a brand new father along with balancing a demanding schedule of being a firefighter for the city of Huntington Beach and his wife being an emergency room nurse. He has seen firsthand what it’s like to lose a co-worker and friend in the line of duty so supporting a foundation like this was a natural calling.
Adam Brown Legacy Fund – This team member is now a policeman in Orange County but prior to his career in law enforcement he was a US Navy SEAL. For those of you that don’t know the story of Adam Brown, he was a member of the elite SEAL Team Six, the counterterrorism unit that killed Osama bin Laden. The Adam Brown Legacy Fund not only supports fallen Navy SEALs but other charities as well.
“Let us not be satisfied with just giving money. Money is not enough, money can be got, but they need your hearts to love them. So, spread your love everywhere you go.” – Mother Teresa
Our fundraising efforts as a team continue up until this Saturday (11/15/2014) as we will be in the water waiting for the shotgun start at 7:00 am in Tempe Town Lake the next morning. We have each created an online website that allows anyone interested to make a secure tax-deductible donation to each athletes charity.
While race day is quickly approaching the work and efforts of Team MPG will continue to move forward and make a difference. As a company we support a culture of hard work and determination that are required to not only finish but succeed in an event like an Ironman. If you’re interested in learning more about Team My Portfolio Guide, making a donation, or about any one of the specific charities we support, please contact us in the form below.
For our subscribed readers we will get back to the markets next week. If there is a subject or question you would like to see us address please forward it to us and we will do our best to cover it in the upcoming weeks or find a time to discuss with you personally.
“Giving is the highest expression of potency. In the very act of giving, I experience my strength, my wealth, my power. This experience of heightened vitality and potency fills me with joy. I experience myself as overflowing, spending, alive, hence as joyous. Giving is more joyous than receiving, not because it is a deprivation, but because in the act of giving lies the expression of my aliveness.” ~ Erich Fromm