GRBS team donates truck full of supplies

The Arthur C. Barraclough Community Service Award spotlights a building service contractor (BSC) that exhibits extraordinary contributions to their surrounding community. Through volunteering, fundraising or other notable initiatives, the winner of this award contributes not only to those in need but provides employees of the company the opportunity to partake in meaningful, inspired projects. Taking home the honor in 2023 Arthur C. Barraclough Community Service Award is Grand Rapids Building Services (GRBS), Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Among the many notable community involvements GRBS partakes in is the annual Perseverance Scholarship program where GRBS provides over $40,000 to a group of high school seniors in the area. While many scholarships are focused on bottom-line results, the Perseverance Scholarship instead looks to spotlight students who had to overcome adverse situations to put themselves into a position to succeed.

“We believe all students should have the opportunity to receive scholarships to help them further their education and many scholarships are based upon GPA and community service,” says Heather VandenBerg, director of marketing and communications at GRBS. “Sometimes the accomplishment of overcoming challenges is the greatest measure of true success.”

A total of eight recipients are selected for the distinction each year, earning $5,000 each. One example of a standout recipient came among the 2022-2023 selections. This student had an unplanned pregnancy during her sophomore year of high school, but despite the difficulty of balancing motherhood and academic responsibilities, she managed to graduate with a 3.59 GPA and take on six advanced-placement (AP) classes for college credit.

“Her counselor shared with us, ‘In all my years as a counselor, I’ve never witnessed a teen mom’s perseverance to not only graduate but choose AP college prep coursework and excel in that level of rigor while also being a teen mom,’” notes VandenBerg.

In addition to the Perseverance Scholarship program, GRBS is consistently involved with many other organizations in the form of volunteer work, sponsorships or donations including United Way, Children’s Healing Network, Relay for Life, and the Special Olympics. To develop longstanding bonds and improve the quality of service, GRBS prides itself on partnering with the same organizations year after year, always looking for ways to expand and improve their contributions.

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