The Newest Rhino: Rhino Foods Foundation

March 4, 2019 at 02:32pm by Ted Castle

The decision to create the non-profit Rhino Foods Foundation has been in the making for over five years. As we began to see our efforts in spreading Rhino Foods’ Income Advance Program to other businesses materialize, we became more dedicated to the idea of a foundation. Since our program’s inception a decade ago, we’re not only seeing impact in Vermont, but nationwide, along with encouraging partnerships developed with the FINRA Foundation and Filene Research Institute. Since inception, we’ve shared how to implement Income Advance on our website and encouraged companies to reach out with questions. We also speak at HR events, government and business conferences, and provide interviews for news organizations nationally.

Our involvement with B Lab lent further impetus to our decision to move to a more long-term strategic effort to spread our innovative workplace practices. Rhino Foods’ purpose of “impacting the manner business is done” and B Lab’s mission of “business as a force for good” are so aligned. The cooperation and collaborative energy between our two organizations in the last two years sparked and motivated me and others at Rhino. Together we realized using B Lab’s talents and experience spreading a movement along with their B Corps’ willingness to share innovative programs and initiatives is a powerful combination.

We decided the best approach was to set up a foundation outside Rhino Foods so it was clear where Rhino’s financial support and resources were being directed. Starting a foundation is exciting as it brings out my entrepreneurial energy and is similar to starting a new business. We have been fortunate to make great progress in a short period of time.

  • With B Lab’s support we built the Income Advance Online Guide. We have hosted cohort calls utilizing the guide with over 15 businesses that have between 20 – 1,000 employees.
  • We were fortunate to present and hold a workshop at the Annual B Corp Retreat in New Orleans that resulted in new partners willing to advance our work and new companies interested in implementing the program.
  • We were invited by Talent Rewire to participate in a year-long Innovation Labs cohort with a half-dozen business leaders who are driving workplace practice innovations.
  • We are engaging with Fintech solution companies that will be important for businesses in multiple locations.
  • We are gaining momentum in funding sources to advance our work.
  • Throughout this process we have brought on numerous new employers and the community of companies offering Income Advance is growing!

The Rhino Foods Foundation’s Mission is to spread innovative workplace practices that champion employee financial stability and make good business sense. We are currently focused on spreading the Income Advance Program as we believe the program has a proven track record. As we develop and grow we expect to help innovate, incubate, and spread other programs that meet our mission. Please check out our website and help us in our important work.