The success we saw in the community got me thinking: What if all of the businesses in Santa Clarita offered discounts to teachers? Could it change how we all view teachers and their contribution to the community? After seeing the public’s reaction to the No Bugs promotion, I thought it might.

I wanted businesses to form a sort of force field around our city’s teachers – a “protective hedge,” as the bible book of Job put it. Offering them special benefits and discounts would help teachers feel as valued and as beloved as they are. It would shine a new light on them.

But in that, I saw an opportunity not only to reward teachers but also to help small businesses as well. All good, small businesses need support too. They need a constant, steady flow of customers and clients. Most small businesses struggle in getting and retaining customers – it’s a constant problem.

But when a business offers discounts and/or free services to teachers, they get instant support from the community, and subsequently, more business.

It’s a win/win/win for everyone! Teachers win, businesses win, and the community wins.

And then I started to think of the “accidental benefits” to businesses. Here is the list that I came up with:

  • An increased business profit by decreasing customer acquisition cost.
  • Referrals from family,  friends and the public because you’re a forerunner in directly supporting our teachers.
  • An increase in sales from referrals and repeat customers. Teachers that truly benefit from your gratitude will share their experience with friends, family, and other teachers.
  • An increase in business growth through community involvement. When consumers hear about the support given to their educators, they’ll be more driven to support your business.
  • An Increase in company morale. Saying “Thank You” to those who helped you get where you are today transcends humility and appreciation: two key qualities to instill in your employees
  • And most of all – The Success of Giving Back – it’s a great feeling when you see the eyes of appreciation fill with tears of thanks.

I knew that offering benefits for teachers would bring along newfound support and enthusiasm from like-minded individuals in the community. Furthermore, I knew from recent experience and my bible studies how much joy there is in giving. I wanted other Santa Clarita businesses to experience the same joy I felt when I offered a free service to teachers.

There is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving! When a sandwich shop offers teachers a free sandwich, when an auto shop gives free oil changes to teachers, or when a restaurant allows teachers to go first, they too get to experience the happiness of giving back.

They get to give back to the same teachers who built them into what they are today, and in return, they get the joy of giving and the support of like-minded people.

That show of goodness and support is sure to have a result in the surrounding community as well. Say a local restaurant starts treating teachers like the heroes that they are by saying, “No waiting for you! If you’re a teacher, you get the next table. Thanks for all the hard work you do.” That sort of reverence and respect would undoubtedly rub off on our youth. Kids would start looking up to teachers, longing to be one someday—just like they now think of firemen, doctors, and the like. One child at a time, one business at a time, we could change the culture for our educators.