From goats to backpacks, Campbell Auto Group gives back

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    Craig and Kurt Campbell
    Craig and Kurt Campbell pose in front of a display for their current community effort, Test Drive 4 Kids, which runs through October.

    The motto for Campbell Auto Group in Edmonds and Everett is “Community Driven,” pun intended, and that drive to give takes no back seat.

    “We do these campaigns year-round, for two or three months at a time,” said owner Kurt Campbell.

    The dealership supports more than two dozen non-profits and charities, currently with its focus on children called “Test Drive 4 Kids.”

    It began on Sept. 1 and runs through October to benefit the Boys and Girls Club of Snohomish County, Foundation for Edmonds School District, the Shoreline Public School Foundation, Everett Public Schools Foundation and Vision House, a long-term family shelter in Shoreline.

    “It helps non-profits provide at-risk kids with field trips, lunches, school supplies and after-school programs,” Campbell said.

    The campaign for July and August was aimed at military veterans. “We usually focus on homelessness and children but we agreed our veterans don’t get the love they deserve so we supported two organization, Honor Flight and Edmonds-based Operation Military Family,” he said.

    Campbell explained that Honor Flight partners with Alaska Airlines to provide flights to Washington, D.C. several times a year so that vets and their caregivers can make a pilgrimage to the city’s war memorials. “It’s very emotional, as you can imagine,” said Campbell. “And when they return, there’s a band that greets them, a hero’s welcome. Over the last two summers, we’ve raised enough money to send 49 war veterans to D.C.”

    Operation Military Family provides various services to vets. “They work with businesses to encourage the hiring of more vets. They also have a program called Reboot, that offers 12 sessions for veterans and their families who are dealing with PTSD.”

    The dealership donated $50 to these causes every time a car sold, raising $31,050, split between the two organizations.

    What’s coming for November and December? “This is a fun one,” said Campbell. “It’s called ‘Buy a Car, Give a Goat.’ We partner with World Concern in Shoreline, which pays for goats in poor countries. People can get milk for their families and sell goat offspring. It’s like a four-legged bank account for them.”

    Campbell added that these campaigns are central to the way his family conducts business. “My brother, Craig, and I are Christians. We believe that our community is at the top of our list — taking care of our neighbor, no matter who or where that is. Most of them are in the Puget Sound region, but some are on the other side of the world.”

    — By Connie McDougall

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