"Christmas came early, thanks to CUD," said Phillip Street, CEO of Greenhouse Ministries.
Consolidated Utility District (CUD) – the water utility for Rutherford County – recently held a holiday drive for canned goods and personal care items to benefit Greenhouse Ministries, a nonprofit social service organization in Murfreesboro.
When the effort started during the second week of November, CUD established an internal goal of raising 1,000 pounds of donations by December 10. Collection boxes were placed in each of the three buildings on CUD's campus, and the staff at the utility's K. Thomas Hutchinson Water Treatment Plant collected items as well.
CUD knew it had quickly surpassed its goal when the treatment plant alone reported 800 pounds of donations – even as the buildings on CUD's campus were continuing to fill their boxes. When the overall total soared to well over 1,000 pounds by early December, the utility chose to revise its goal.
"We know what kind of year 2020 has been, so we decided to use 2,020 as our new goal," said Bill Dunnill, General Manager of CUD. "As a utility, we felt led to give to Greenhouse Ministries as a way of giving back to the county and to our ratepayers. This project is a testament to the giving spirit of our staff, employees, and Board members,"
"This is a remarkable gift from CUD," said Street. "There are so many people in Rutherford County who are suffering economically, and these donations will help a tremendous number of families."
The reward for meeting the goal of 2,020 pounds is a doughnut breakfast for all staff and employees later in December. "We're going to have a sizable order at Krispy Kreme," said Dunnill.
To keep a running total of the donations, CUD used scales to weigh the contents of the collection boxes and added up the number of ounces of individual items. The final tally of items collected from the CUD campus was more than 980 pounds, while the staff at the water treatment plant brought in approximately 1,100 pounds.
A Downloadable Holiday Cookbook
As a way of providing added value to its ratepayers during the holidays, CUD has developed a free, downloadable cookbook through its website at cudrc.com. For residents who may wish to prepare more of their meals at home and avoid potential exposure to colds and viruses in crowded restaurants, the cookbook offers a variety of options.
"Most folks probably aren't expecting dozens of fun recipes from a water utility, so we figured this would be a nice surprise," said Ivy Brown, Executive Assistant at CUD and designer of the utility's holiday cookbook. "We had developed a cookbook four years ago, but it was mainly meant for our own employees. We want to share this year's edition digitally with all our ratepayers."
Inside CUD's digital cookbook are recipes for 11 entrées, nine side dishes, and 20 desserts. The recipes range from holiday-themed foods – such as decorated pretzels – to dishes that provide a change of pace, like baked ziti. All of the recipes were contributed by Board members, staff members, and employees in Engineering, Maintenance, Finance, Customer Service, and at the water treatment plant.
At Consolidated Utility District, our mission continues to be to provide safe drinking water for all residential, industrial, and governmental agencies, meeting and exceeding all federal and state standards at the lowest possible cost with high quality, efficiency, and integrity.