By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
NEW YORK – The aftermath of Hurricane Sandy left many in the storm’s path without power for weeks. At least two power accessories companies pitched in with the relief efforts.
Solar accessories provider Goal Zero’s two-week long “You Buy One, We Give One” campaign generated $594,670, enough to supply 3,965 portable solar-power kits and accessories to storm victims who had lost power.
From Nov. 1 to Nov. 15, Goal Zero tracked all sales made at participating retailers, as well as their online store. With a desire to help as many people as quickly as they could, Goal Zero quickly packed up a semitruck full of portable rechargers, solar panels and accessories before ever receiving sales totals. Customers across the nation answered the company’s challenge, pushing sales to nearly $600,000 in 15 days, prompting Goal Zero to pack up another truckload of gear for those still without power on the east coast.
“The coolest part about You Buy One, We Give one, was that it started from the ground up,” said Joe Atkin, president and CEO of Goal Zero. “Our employees came to us with the entire plan of what to send and how to get it there. They even volunteered to load up the truck and deliver the gear themselves.”
Goal Zero employees, nicknamed the Hurricane Sandy Relief Squad, spent time on the East Coast cleaning houses and delivering lights, solar panels and portable rechargers, capable of powering everything from cellphones to refrigerators. With the help of Team Rubicon, a veterans emergency response team, and volunteers on the ground, the Goal Zero Hurricane Sandy Relief Squad was able to help families in the Rockaways, New York, and Brick, N.J.
“We couldn’t have made as much of an impact without the help of our amazing retail partners and everyone in Goal Zero Nation,” said Atkin. “With their help, we made the powerless, powerful.
Meanwhile, Cleveland-based Tremont Electric teamed with the Occupy Sandy relief organization to deliver its nPower-brand PEG kinetic mobile chargers to the powerless.
The company teamed with Crisis Mappers, an organization that tweets and texts in real time from crisis areas to create maps which emergency responders use to target help to those most in need.
The nPower PEGs donated to Occupy Sandy were funded by an Indiegogo campaign earlier this year to send mobile power into crisis areas. Indiegogo is a crowd-funding site.
“Hurricane Sandy hit us hard in Cleveland,” said Tremont CEO and founder Aaron LeMieux, “so we feel compelled to help out.”
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