Ten years ago, Brian Bartlette started a new job. Walmart had opened a new store on Ireland Road in South Bend, and Brian was hired as the store’s Community Welcome Coordinator.
His job was to contact local charities and see what Walmart could do for them. He reached out to LOGAN, and found the cause he wanted to support — disability awareness. “LOGAN really affected me,” he said. “I keep asking myself, ‘What can we do to help more?'”
He started by helping LOGAN qualify for a Walmart C0mmunity Grant, to help fund the agency’s signature event, The Great LOGAN Nose-On. He also proposed selling Nose-On merchandise in his store during March, and recruited associates to push the products. They had fun wearing the green noses and green derbies and selling the green wares to store customers.
“I saw we could do more, so I stretched out the reach to the whole market — Warsaw, Niles, Elkhart — the entire market of nine stores,” Bartlette said. “It took a couple of years to push it out that far.” But he did it.
Today, 10 years later, Brian is still getting it done. Over the years, Walmart and Sam’s Club became presenting sponsors of The Great LOGAN Nose-On, and all nine stores in the region joined the “Green Team” by selling Nose-On swag. Estimates put their sales total over the $100,000 mark.
Brian likes knowing he and his associates at Walmart have made a difference in the community by helping LOGAN. “The impact we could have, that was one of things that put LOGAN into focus for me,” he said.
Walmart’s employee magazine, Walmart World featured the store’s impact on LOGAN in the April 2017 edition. We’ve reprinted the story here:
During March, several Walmart stores go green in support of LOGAN.
For the first few weeks of March, Store 3436 in South Bend, Indiana becomes a sea of green. From the pharmacy to the Auto Care Center, associates dress up in green rubber noses, derby hats, and vests. They’ll even wear buttons that read, “Get Your Nose On.” Others volunteer to sell green merchandise—noses, pencils, wristbands, and more.
It’s not that they’re obsessed with St. Patrick’s Day. Rather, they’re passionate supporters of LOGAN, a local nonprofit that assists people with autism and other developmental challenges. LOGAN runs the annual Nose-On campaign to raise both awareness and the funds to support the nonprofit’s mission in the community.
“We try to be creative with it,” says Ricky U., support manager. “It’s a really fun sight to see.”
Ten years after the first event, support for LOGAN has expanded to all nine Walmart stores in the region and two Sam’s Clubs. Each year, the stores have a friendly competition to see who can sell the most noses. To date, associates have raised about $120,000 for LOGAN.
Jill Langford, LOGAN’s chief development officer, says she’s grateful for Walmart’s partnership. “The commitment of Walmart associates is truly energizing to LOGAN’s signature fundraiser.”