The SNCares Journey
During State National’s 50+ years in business, our generous and caring employees have always sought out ways to help those in need. From golf tournament sponsorships to the holiday Angel Tree to volunteering for hundreds of worthy causes, service has always been a core company value.
In the spring of 2019, an idea came to life: Why not create an employee-led group devoted to finding and creating a more organized, efficient, and effective way to serve nonprofits and the local community? Matt Freeman, State National’s president and CEO, believed that having more helping hands working together would not only benefit the community but also further nurture our special company culture.
That’s why SNCares was created — a committee of State National employees dedicated to making a positive impact right here in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex.
SNCares was officially announced on July 10, 2019, and a month later, the group took on their very first initiative, Operation Back2School. Hosted by 6 Stones, a local nonprofit organization whose mission is to share hope through community mobilization, Operation Back2School gives kids and families in need access to the school supplies they need to be successful in each upcoming school year.
To foster some friendly competition and create enthusiasm, SNCares created a “backpack challenge” between departments, with visual representations on backpack cards and a big “thermometer” to see who was in the lead and how close we were to our goal. State National employees stepped up to the plate in a big way, and donated 31 backpacks stuffed full of supplies for local children in HEB ISD.
Since then, State National has built a committed and impactful relationship with 6 Stones, which continues to be one of the most active SNCares partnerships to date. SNCares has worked on a variety of projects with 6 Stones, such as collecting donations of clothing and household essentials, volunteering at the annual Night of Hope holiday fundraiser, and participating in their Community Powered Revitalization (CPR) projects. We’ve even placed a 6 Stones collection bin in our parking lot so people can contribute on a regular basis by dropping off donations right at work.
In order to accurately represent the heart of our coworkers, SNCares conducts periodic employee surveys. That data helps us ensure we are reaching the causes and organizations that are most dear to those who work at State National.
After each survey period, the committee focuses on supporting the top six categories emphasized by employees. Our current SNCares focus areas are:
- Children and Youth
- Mental Health and Addiction
- Food Access
- Domestic Abuse and Human Trafficking
- Veterans and Military Families
Markel Community Grants Initiative
In 2020, State National’s parent company, Markel, began a Community Grants pilot program in order to focus extra attention on helping the local communities around their various locations. State National was chosen to kick off the pilot in the area around our Bedford, Texas, headquarters.
Each year, Markel generously allocates a specific amount of funding to help State National help our local nonprofits. The SNCares committee meets regularly to research charities in our area within our six focus areas, invite them to apply for a grant, and evaluate the grant submissions.
Through these wonderful grants, we’ve been able to supply items from wrestling shoes to summer meal delivery to grief care for children to career training and transportation — and that’s just a few of the opportunities we’ve had to help.
There’s nothing more thrilling than informing a hard-working nonprofit organization that we’re able to fund the amazing work they do in our community. And participating in “big check” photo ops, where we get to meet some of these local heroes, are a joyful benefit of committee membership!
Creating a Better Tomorrow: Key Projects by SNCares
Since its inception, SNCares has worked with multiple organizations to create lasting changes within the Dallas-Fort Worth area to help build a strong community where everyone can thrive. In just a few short years, the number of nonprofits helped by our employees and grant awards has grown tremendously. While this is not a comprehensive list, here are some of the organizations we have been fortunate to be able to serve:
- Tarrant Area Food Bank
- Alliance for Children
- HEB PTA Community Clothes Closet
- The WARM Place
- Operation Gratitude
- The Gatehouse
- Texas Mental Health Resources (TXMHR)
- AUsome Moms
- Union Gospel Mission
- Community Enrichment Center
- Community Storehouse
- Chosen Ones
- Nehemiah Builds
- YMCA of Fort Worth Food Pantry/Foodmobile
- Safe Haven of Tarrant County
Canine Companions: State National Gets a Puppy!
One special cause the committee and employees throughout State National have been especially excited about supporting is our sponsorship of a puppy through Canine Companions. In spring of 2022, we began sponsoring the training of a future service dog to assist an individual with a disability to live a more independent life.
After a company-wide contest, “our puppy” was named Tracker and we have been proudly following him through the various stages of his training.
Watch for a future post with a more detailed history of Tracker’s journey — and more adorable Tracker updates as he moves from the puppy raising stage to his more rigorous professional training.
Many Ways to Help
SNC employees are very lucky to have a parent company that believes in giving back, and empowers individual giving by matching employee donations at a very generous 3:1 — for quadruple the impact!
However, monetary donations aren’t the only way employees can contribute. SNCares believes that it’s important for everyone to have an opportunity to give back — that’s why the committee makes it a point to plan initiatives that aren’t always financial in nature. Whether it’s in-kind donations, collections (such as gathering donations of old sheets and towels for the animal shelter, or luggage for foster children), or writing a thank-you card to a veteran, there are so many ways to help.
Much Work Done — and Much Yet to Come!
In addition to continuing to support 6 Stones’ Operation Back 2 School and Night of Hope, several of our other initiatives have also quickly become cherished traditions. Some of these are supporting North Texas Giving Day each September, the annual SNCares bake sale for heart health, and group/departmental volunteering during SNCares Serve Days each holiday season, where volunteers wrap gifts and assist recipients with their “shopping.” Serving those in need is heartwarming by itself, but even more so when you can share that good feeling with your coworkers.
Today, SNCares stands as a representation of how purpose-driven action can have a positive impact on everyone involved — including our community. As we build new relationships and workplace connections, our company culture is strengthened and we are inspired. Sharing our workplace skills in new ways and taking action together as a team to help others increases our own gratitude toward the many blessings we enjoy.
Follow us on LinkedIn to stay updated on future charitable initiatives from SNCares!