Our Perfect Bracket
As I write this, the U.S. is just weeks away from falling under the spell of March Madness.
Millions of people eagerly tune into this roundball marathon each year, including many who spend hours putting together what’s known as their brackets. Madness indeed!
Reportedly, no one has ever succeeded in building a perfect one (read: accurately predicting the outcome of every game that is played). But that never stops them from trying.
Here at ALAN we’ve put together a bracket too, except that ours has nothing to do with basketball and everything to do with compassion.
It starts with the many non-profits that we work hand-in-hand with. We routinely provide more than 60 of them (and counting) with the donated logistics services and equipment they need to supply food, water, shelter, rescue, medicine, PPE, medical equipment and cleaning supplies to disaster survivors and other people in need.
It continues with the 30-plus trade organizations known as our industry members. In addition to helping us with financial support, these associations frequently help us get the word out about specific time-critical logistics needs – or directly reach out to potential donors who might be willing to help. Time and time again, they’ve been a key reason why we’ve been able to say yes to so many requests for assistance.
And of course, it includes our in-kind donors, the many heroic companies who step up and say yes to carrying a load, providing warehousing space, lending a forklift, etc. when it’s needed most. (There were 34 such companies in 2022 alone, and we’re eternally grateful to each and every one of them.)
Our volunteers are another big part of our bracket. Some work tirelessly to update and verify the many data points on our Supply Chain Intelligence Center. Others serve on our board, assist with communications or provide operations coordination when disasters hit. And we couldn’t do it without them!
Last but not least, our bracket includes our financial donors, the dozens of businesses and individuals whose monetary support provides much of the fuel that’s needed to keep ALAN going. Like a good center or point guard, they truly do give our bottom line its mojo, so that we can continue doing the work that we do year after year.
Needless to say, we feel really, really good about our bracket – and not just during March Madness. Day after day and year after year, it’s a winning combination that helps us change countless lives for the better – all without having to attempt a single three-pointer or jump shot. In fact the way we see it, it’s pretty darned close to perfect.
American Logistics Aid Network
P.S. Y’all know I don’t like sports. But I do confess that this season I’ve been following my undergrad alma mater, and hoopster Hansel Emmanuel, who has overcome the odds to play at the collegiate level. Check out the crowd’s reaction when he scored his first college points earlier this season: https://www.espn.com/mens-college-basketball/story/_/id/35229354/hansel-emmanuel-one-armed-player-northwestern-st-scores-first-points