We often get questions about how Portercraft Floors is different, and one of the first things we say is that we aim to do business as mission.
But what does that actually mean?
“We’re very passionate about teaching people that you don’t have to sacrifice your skills and a career and vocation to go make the world a better place,” explained Daniel Elbrecht, Portercraft Floors claims director, who helped install the floor. “You can take your skills to work towards whatever mission that you have.”
We look for ways to serve in our daily business as well as ways that we can give back in more than just a monetary way. Many times this includes donating flooring or even going out and installing the floor ourselves.
One of our projects included installing a floor for Still Creek Ranch, in Bryan, Texas. Today, over 30 years after its founding, the ranch provides safe and loving homes for kids from crisis situations.
Still Creek Ranch is home to boys and girls from crisis situations who live and go to school on the ranch.
“We’re actually listed as a therapeutic boarding school which can be a little bit misleading,” explained James Imnon, director of Still Creek Ranch, “When I think ‘boarding school,’ I think about wealthy families who are able to send their children to a boarding school, but it’s not like that.”
Many of the children are on scholarships and are privately placed by family members, guardians, or other advocates.
“We get these kids who come [and] are so hurt and so broken. So many traumatic events have happened in their lives,” said Evelyn Priest. Priest was one of the first girls to live at the ranch. She now works as a house parent along with her husband, Wes. Together they have worked at the ranch as house parents and other roles for 15 years.
Many of the kids at the ranch are from Texas, but some from out of state or out of country. One of Still Creek’s programs, Restore Her, takes in girls who have been rescued out of human trafficking in Houston and other areas.
The ranch sits on 200 beautiful acres of Texas countryside. By combining home life, school and chores on the ranch, Still Creek provides its residents a safe, encouraging environment to heal and start a new life.
Part of Still Creek’s holistic approach is to provide healing and learning opportunities through riding and caring for the horses in their equestrian center.
“We’re casting seeds along the way – like the fruits of the spirit,” Priest explained, “but also teaching them how to do laundry or how to take care of house chores, how to be self-sufficient and independent, learn how to read and write, teach them how to fish. That’s my favorite thing to do.”
Keep reading or watch our video below to find out more about our project with Still Creek Ranch.
From Cracked Tile to New Hardwood
Over a weekend, six of our employees installed Columbia River “Spokane” into one of the boys’ homes. The floor replaced old, broken tile that had caused many cuts and bruises over the years. We installed the floor into multiple bedrooms and the living area.
The day before we installed, a group of employees from a local bank came to tear out the existing tile. They also painted the walls and donated the extra money in their budget to other necessities on the ranch.
Entirely funded by private donations, Still Creek Ranch does not take government funding and is not a part of the foster care system. Over the years they have had many of their needs met through the generosity of local organizations.
“Volunteer groups multiply the effort and do in a week what would’ve normally taken us months,” Imnon observed.
While we were installing the floor, another group from a local church helped with some landscaping and painting projects around the girls’ homes.
The gratefulness of the staff and residents at Still Creek Ranch impressed many of us. Some of the boys who lived in the home were there to help unload. One of them came back after the others had all left to say thank you without the other kids being there.
How You Can Help Your Community
How you can use your business as mission to help others right now? Here’s 3 simple ways to use your time and skills to help your local community:
Find an organization that works with a cause that you relate to. Research a cause that you’re passionate about. Ask them if they’re in need of a new floor or need any other type of maintenance work done. They may not need new floors, but they might need some repairs or other touch-ups.
Ask your team about what causes they feel passionate about and consider offering a matching donation fund, or paid time off to serve those causes.
Invite others to be a part of your project. Let them know what you are involved in and specific ways they can help.