16 MiMfg Magazine September 2017 MAHLE Goes a Step Beyond in Strengthening St. Johns Community outreach is extremely important in a small town setting. As community leaders and major employers, being a responsible and engaged corporate citizen is crucial. For a global manufacturer like MAHLE, being based in the 8,000+ resident town of St. Johns clarifies just how important an employer’s role can be. “MAHLE’s objective is donating for the common good in a globalized world,” says Bruce Fandel, MAHLE Engine Components USA Inc. plant manager. “We strive to donate our time and efforts both physically and financially to the betterment of the local community.” During lean years, such as 2008 when the economy was not robust, MAHLE was affected like many other companies with cutbacks and layoffs. Community outreach efforts and charitable donations were scaled back, yet MAHLE continued to work closely with local organizations to assist in community- focused projects enhancing the quality of life. As times improved for manufacturers, their contributions and engagement with the local community became more extensive. MAHLE reaches out to local organizations such as the City of St. Johns, Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club, Regional Educational Service Agency, Capital Area Michigan Works! and Clinton County Taskforce on Employment to name a few talent and community-focused groups. “In the past three years, the team and St. Johns employees have raised more than $121,000 to support the American Cancer Society’s goal of saving lives and creating more birthdays,” exclaims Fandel. “The MAHLE Westside Walkers, the St. Johns plant team, have also participated in the St. Johns Relay for Life for over twenty years and continues to faithfully support that critical cause.” MAHLE donates each year to the Sparrow Clinton Health Foundation for the enhancement of the local hospital. “St. Johns is extremely fortunate to have such a high caliber medical facility for general medical and surgical treatment as well as specialties such as oncology services, CT and MRI scans which in the past would need to have been performed “ No amount of bad weather can keep MAHLE down. Their Westside Walkers Relay for Life Team has raised over $39,000 for their American Cancer Society 2017 event. MAHLE’s objective is donating for the common good in a globalized world. We strive to donate our time and efforts both physically and financially to the betterment of the local community. ” — Bruce Fandel MAHLE Engine Components USA Inc. elsewhere,” Fandel says. “We made a significant donation to the state-of-the-art emergency room which opened in July 2014 and are very proud of the examination room which bears our name.” Finally, MAHLE’s strong support of its community is evident by its role in National MFG Day. “We hosted 71 local students, faculty and guests from around the area and provided them with insight and under- standing of our manufacturing process,” says Fandel. “Manufacturing tours were set up by The Capital Area Manufacturing Council (CAMC), Lansing Area Economic Partnership (LEAP), Clinton County Regional Educational Service Agency (RESA), Capital Area Michigan Works! along with key local corporate sponsors.” What Can You Do? One company’s community engagement strategy may not work for another but every manufacturer can do something to boost up the rest of their town. If you’re looking for ways to engage, consider: • Evaluating how your company mission can extend beyond your facility walls • Asking your staff for ideas — most of your team lives within the region and has ties to the community; they may know of local projects your company can dedicate resources to • Forming a community service committee within your company which discusses projects to work on, charities to help fund and ways to develop stronger community connections • Looking for ways to build on existing community relationships and developing new partnerships with local schools, economic development organizations, city government and other businesses • Participating in MFG Day on 10/6/17. Check out page 11 for more information and look for available resources at the newly improved mimfg.org . 6 Brett Gerrish is a communications coordinator with the MMA. He may be reached at 517-487-8533 or firstname.lastname@example.org.