Normally I like to keep these blogs fairly universal, or at least to generalize items, you know, lapel pins, lanyards, challenge coins, general. But yesterday I got word that one of our custom pin customers is using one of our pins in a very unique, and wonderful way. An awareness ribbon created in honor of one of the children killed in the Sandy Hook shooting is going to be included in the cornerstone of a new playground being built in his honor. This small, green awareness ribbon with his name on it is going to be placed in the wet cement and will be a small tribute inside of a much bigger memorial. I was really floored, actually.
I’m not blase about what I do for a living. Everyone comes to us with a vision, a purpose, and these pins help them achieve their goals. So I know that no pin is a throw away. But something that touched people so personally, in the form of the death of a child, well, that one hit me “right in the feels” as all the kids are saying these days. I was personally invested in this pin for this little boy, and I’ve gotten to follow the progress these awareness pins have taken, through fundraisers, memorials, 5Ks, TV interviews, and watched them spread across the country as supporters of the families of Sandy Hook played their part.
And now 26 playgrounds are going up along the path that Hurricane Sandy took last year, a way to heal the land ravaged by nature, and to heal the hearts ravaged by grief. And to have lapel pins play even a small roll in this is pretty much affirmation for why I get up and go to work every day.
So keep an eye out for these wonderful playgrounds, and for the awareness ribbons that will be helping to honor both Hurricane Sandy and Sandy Hook Elementary students and teachers. And, as I have learned firsthand, think twice before discounting things like lapel pins as just pieces of jewelry, or cheap branding. They are really so much more.