Joe Hemphill, Chief Development Officer and Alison Kear, Executive Director of Covenant House took a moment to meet Melanie Osborne, Chugach Executive Vice President and General Counsel.

In lieu of the traditional check hand off, Joe Hemphill, Chief Development Officer and Alison Kear, Executive Director of Covenant House took a moment to meet Melanie Osborne for a safe and socially distanced photo. Covenant House Alaska has been serving the Anchorage community for more than three decades; donations can be made at to help this organization continue their mission to end youth homelessness.

Early into the COVID-19 pandemic, most of the Chugach employees who work in the Alaska headquarters were hunkered down at home and telecommuting in accordance with the Municipality of Anchorage’s health mandates. One month into the separation of our Anchorage team, the fundraising for the Alaska Run For Women (AKRFW) launched, and a question arose. Could the Chugach employees come together and raise funds remotely? The stats of the race answered the question. Chugach fielded the largest virtual team for the race and, at more than $12,000, Chugach raised the most money for the annual rally to defeat cancer.

As summer drew to a close and our Anchorage employees neared the five-month mark in their telecommuting, fundraising for the Anchorage Heart Walk launched, and the question was asked again. Could our employees raise money remotely for the annual effort to find a cure for heart disease? The answer was a resounding yes. As in year’s past, Chugach set a heart walk fundraising goal of $5,000, and our employees answered the call. In total, Chugach raised $6,571 to improve heart health in Alaska.

Squeezed between the AKRFW and the Anchorage Heart Walk was another challenge that was put before our employees. The Chugach Sleep Out Challenge asked our employees to take a break, get outside, rest and relax, and do it for a good cause.

The challenge was to go camping somewhere in Alaska and make a minimum donation of $25 to Covenant House Alaska. The goal was to raise $1,000 for the largest provider of services to homeless and runaway youth in the state of Alaska. Apparently, the goal was not set high enough, because our employees raised $2,575 for the youth who depend on the services of Covenant House Alaska.

COVID-19 has proven itself to be the great physical divider, separating people at all levels of society, but it has not divided the Chugach team from their compassion or ability to support worthy causes. One of the Chugach Employee Core Behaviors is We Build Community; simply put, it means that we try to make a positive difference in the communities where we live in and work, even during a worldwide pandemic.

“Thank you to all the incredible people who wear a Chugach employee badge for continuing to support our community through service and gifts during this challenging summer,” said Melanie Osborne, Chugach Executive Vice President. “And thank you to the inspiring organizations that we support for all that you do to make Anchorage and Alaska communities worth building.”

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Director Randi Jo Gause

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