When the Todd family purchased their home and vacation rental in the Hocking Hills, they knew they wanted to give back. They decided to dedicate 5% of each rental to a charity and let their three children, Austin, Brooke, and Carsyn, each pick an organization. But that wasn’t enough for mom, Debbie, she wanted to do more. So she organized the Hocking Hills Gives Back in July to share her passion for helping others with the whole community. The Give Back would recruit other area businesses to donate a portion of their proceeds in the month of July to the SE Ohio Foodbank.

Fueled by Debbie’s passion and energy, the campaign grew to include eight businesses: The Woodlands at Hocking Hills, The Carpenter’s Cabin, Hocking Hills Winery, The Box Hop, ReWild Rentals, Hocking Hills Coffee Emporium, Gifts That Give Back, and Kinder Beginnings. The campaign spread largely on social media, with the help of some great dance moves and a meaningful plea about the current food shortages foodbanks across the state face. Businesses found creative ways to be involved like the Hocking Hills Winery’s Community Night and Kinder Beginnings Parent’s Night Out. Most importantly, they came together with the goal of supporting their friends and neighbors facing food insecurity. While prices rise and margins get squeezed, they made a choice to give back.

For the Todd family, giving back is not just a way to help those in need today, but an opportunity to teach their kids the importance of service to their community. “Kids learn best by not only what we say, but by what we do,” says dad, Jeff. “Including them in our give back opportunities teaches them the importance of thinking outside of themselves and more about others.” Giving back will continue to be a way of living and doing business for the Todds. In fact, Debbie is already excited about what the Second Annual Hocking Hills Gives Back in July might bring!

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