Smiling volunteers at the Whirlpool Corporation Cleveland, TN appliance sale benefiting United Way

“On Nov. 13 we coordinated a huge event that’s never been done before in this region,” said Whirlpool Corporation’s Cleveland, Tenn. Plant Communicator Brandi King. “The outcome and response was immensely powerful and positive, and will help in supporting so many local residents.”

The event that King is talking about is an appliance sale to help local families in need living in the community surrounding the plant, which manufactures cooking appliances for Whirlpool Corporation’s North American Region. It’s been 18 months since Cleveland employees have had an opportunity to hold an internal employee appliance sale.

“With the challenges of COVID, which includes internal safety measures, protocols and other restrictions, it’s been nearly impossible to hold the sale that plant families look forward to and sometimes desperately need,” said King. The money raised from the employee sale goes completely to support the United Way of the Ocoee Region, and the people who work and reside in the plant community.”

Whirlpool appliances lined up prepared for the sale to benefit United Way in Clevleland, Tennessee“We have been blown away by our local Whirlpool United Way Campaign participation this year,” said United Way of the Ocoee Region Director of Development Kayla Shugart. “The first-ever event resulted in a total dollar figure that is unprecedented in our long-standing partnership. We are excited, energized, and so incredibly thankful.”

A group leader in the Cleveland Operations Factory Distribution Center (FDC), Jackee Thompson, was able to find the resources for Cleveland to receive nearly 300 obsolete appliances. Working with all of the operation’s functions, including Safety, Maintenance, Facilities, FDC and Logistics, the team was able to coordinate an outdoor onsite event that safely accommodated employees and community members to take advantage of these deeply discounted products. The United Way team volunteered at the sale, which was the largest of its kind held at the plant to date.

“Our history with our local Whirlpool plant depicts a strong community partner that creates opportunities for their employees to give as well as receive,” said Shugart. “All Whirlpool employees have the option to participate in the annual United Way campaign through payroll deductions, onetime gifts and this appliance sale. They also have access to our direct and partner services if they happen to fall upon hard times.”

“In our local annual campaign, Whirlpool has maintained a top-three position for fundraised dollars for more than five years. As a staple employer in our region, we are proud to have a thriving relationship with this plant and its employees—who we count as both our neighbors and our friends.”