Simplicity picks up the tab for pizza patrons at Polito’s
By Taylor J. Hale
Special to the Gazette
STEVENS POINT — Simplicity Credit Unions throughout the Portage County area are endeavoring to “pay it forward,” with their Random Acts of Kindness program.
Started in August 2018, the event sends faculty to local establishments in Marshfield, Stevens Point or Plover, where they greet people and cover patron’s bills. Credit union team members went to Polito’s in Stevens Point to buy pizza for locals last month on Nov. 5.
“They [Simplicity staff] talk to the customers, offer to pay their bill and give them each a card that encourages them to keep paying the kindness forward,” said Suzanne Campbell, Simplicity. “If people are willing, we also like to take some pictures to commemorate the day and share on social media.”
Credit union representatives are sent out with $200 to do as much good as they can. Enlistees for the charitable ventures can change each event, with last month’s pair being from the Plover branch of Simplicity.
“They both work at our Post Road, Plover location. Briawna is a call center rep, and Amanda is a mortgage loan processor,” Campbell explained.
The pair went into Polito’s with the intention of buying lunch for other guests, but their goodwill seemed to draw kindness from pizza patrons, too.
“We stay until the money runs out,” Campbell said. “In this case, last month, one of the customers donated $20 cash so that Briawna and Amanda could pay for even more customers.”
The event began when a Simplicity worker got the preliminary idea from other companies in the area.
“Our VP of Marketing, Ben Bauer, heard of similar programs at other credit unions,” Campbell said. “We added our own twist of making it a monthly surprise.”
Polito’s was excited to have the kind visitors from Simplicity. Campbell feels that working in tandem with other local establishments is vital for mutual growth.
“The Polito’s staff has always been easy to work with and great believers in the local businesses partnering for the good of the area,” she said. “They were more than willing to let us come in for our Random Acts of Kindness.”
People who stopped in unknowingly throughout the duration of the event were surprised by the warm welcome and offer of free food. And Polito’s is by no means the last stop on their route of charitable exploits. The group plans to continue to roll out the program each month. Campbell is ecstatic for the outlet to show Simplicity’s reverence for the region.
“At Simplicity Credit Union, we believe in living lives of service,” she said. “Our credit union is fortunate to be able to give back to our communities, and this is just one small way to do that.”