In a world where businesses continue to focus on the bottom line and output , it is special to be a part of a company that values service to others like At Your Service. The Founder and Owner of At Your Service, who likes to be referred to as our Coach, Mark Casaburi, has always had giving back as part of the AYS mission. Recently, he was inspired to turn our service focus toward a new organization.
The World Central Kitchen (WCK) organization was founded by Chef Jose Andres in 2010. The WCK is a global group of Chefs dedicated to combating hunger and poverty. This organization is usually first on the scene in times of emergency. It was when Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, Mark wanted to find a way to give back. First, we used the At Your Service office in Sayville as a donation drop off location. AYS with community and staff donations were able to donate items to larger causes flying in essentials to Puerto Rico. But after this experience, Mark wanted to do something bigger.
Mark found the WCK and discovered a WCK supported farm, La Botica De La Tierra, in Puerto Rico that needed some help. Inspired by this, Mark brought our team down and worked on the farm planting trees and building fences. About the experience, Mark said: “Our team had a really special experience. Working together on a farm brought our teamwork to such a high level. Volunteering with WCK is helping to create a more sustainable food ecosystem. We feel the farm work we provided will create strength for Puerto Rico to bounce back after future hurricanes and other natural disasters. It’s a fulfilling feeling to do our small part to feed the world and those in need.”
Our experience on the farm was so transformative that we decided as a team to make a monetary donation to the farm in Mark’s honor. We also recently attended the Dine N Dash WCK fundraiser in DC with our team in an effort to stay connected with the organization.It was a great night of local food and drink that led up to a private audience with Chef José Andrés! Although the night was wonderful from start to finish, one simple sentence from Chef Andrés really resonated with us all: “During a time of emergency, everyone should have access to a humble plate of food.” It is that exact sentiment that drives Mark and the team at AYS to be dedicated to giving and to the WCK.
We are looking forward to returning to La Botica De La Tierra soon and plan to continue partnering with WCK for years to come! To support the organization and make a donation to WCK, click here.