by Justin Kimling, Director of Projects for MK Advisors
When I graduated from Michigan State University no one told me what to look for in a company or what makes a great company. It was to go to school, get a degree, get a “good job.” It wasn’t until many years later, after working with and for several organizations, that I came to realize the importance of company values. And working for an organization or on projects that make a difference. This never became more clear to me than when I was diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML). As I laid in my Hospital bed unsure of what was next my mind was flooded with questions. What are you doing to make a difference? How are you leaving this world in a better place than it is now? What I came to realize is although I have been able to provide a comfortable life to my family I was not really making any significant impact on those around.
Around that time is when I received a text from Michelle Klassen-Merrigan (MK) asking if I knew of any Project Managers looking for a new role. I told her I was interested, Knowing MK from her son’s baseball team I knew she was working on things that made an impact, like Mana Boxes. When MK said, “It’s about doing the right thing with the right people for the right reasons.” I knew I had to be a part of what she was doing.
As a husband, a father of five and youth sports coach, to say that my life is busy is an understatement. I strive to live my life on purpose, to have a positive influence on others. Being a part of Mana Boxes has given me that opportunity. Through my involvement I have been able to share stories of the 1800+ women we are directly and indirectly impacting in South Africa, through Mana Boxes with my wife and children.
I am thankful that my children are able to see first hand the impact we can have on someone else’s life. I hope they are able to take what they learn from this project and continue to find ways to make a difference and impact on those around them.