More people set to be helped by Homewood Chevy Cares

Chevrolet of Homewood, 18033 S. Halsted St., is expanding its philanthropic efforts.
The Chevrolet of Homewood leadership includes owner Steve Phillipos, seated, and from left General Manager Bob Cuban, Comptroller Gina Morin and General Sales Manager Joe Reed. (Sharon L. Filkins/H-F Chronicle)
  Chevrolet of Homewood
  leadership includes owner
  Steve Phillipos, seated, and
  from left General Manager
  Bob Cuban, Comptroller Gina
  Morin and General Sales
  Manager Joe Reed. 
(Sharon L.
  Filkins/H-F Chronicle)
 

The Chevrolet dealership, serving the South Suburbs since 2009, is showing its outreach to individuals in need and supporting service organizations across Homewood and other communities.

 
While many residents and customers may be aware of the dealership’s annual give-away of a car at Christmas, the company is expanding its philanthropic efforts in a program named Homewood Chevy Cares. 
 
“We enjoy helping people and everyone here is part of it,” said Homewood Chevy President Steve Phillipos. “The program is company based. We have 72 employees and most of them participate in the events we plan throughout the year. We want them to feel they are a part of what we do and also want them to enjoy the events so that it is not just a ‘coming to work’ thing. It is all on a volunteer basis. Helping people is always a good feeling,” he said.
 
Phillipos added that his inspiration for Homewood Chevy Cares comes from advice he received early in his career. 

“A mentor told me that if you inspire your employees, excite the customers and bring pride to the community, you will be successful,” he said. Phillipos added that he loves the Homewood community and surrounding areas. He is always looking for ways to raise the awareness of various needs and to help businesses or organizations that are doing something worthy of recognition.
 
According to Social Media Director Andrea Malachowski, Homewood Chevy Cares is handled through social media. 

“We have 10,000 followers on our social media pages: Facebook, Twitter, the website, etc. We ask them to search for individuals in need, or service organizations or businesses which are doing something worthwhile for the community and need support. They then can submit the names on-line with an explanation of why they should receive an award. 

"The awards are presented monthly, so people can vote each day throughout the month for their favorite nominee. The nominee with the most votes at the end of the month is the winner of a $400 award.”

Recipients of the monthly donation this year include You Matter 2 in April and the South Suburban Humane Society in May. 
 
Throughout the year, Homewood Chevy sponsors events that demonstrate its interest in others.
 
A weekly “Cruise In” car show is held each Friday from 5 to 8:30 p.m. It is sponsored by the South Side Cruisers of Chicago Heights. Homewood Chevy hosts the event and provides hot dogs and water. Half of the weekly 50/50 split raffle is added to a fund being collected for a nominated recipient. 

Homewood Chevy also matches the total saved at the end of the season.
 
This year’s nominated recipient is Judith Celio, mother of a 12-year-old paraplegic son who was injured when a bullet was shot into their home. She is struggling financially due to medical expenses and salary lost while she spent time at the hospital with her son. Her photo and story is on display each night of the car show, encouraging donations.

The community is invited to the upcoming  annual BBQ for the Troops on July 13 at the dealership, in partnership with the USO of Illinois. 

“It is a popular event with the community coming together,” Malachowski said. “There is great support from the community and its businesses. Donuts are donated by Krispy Kreme and Home Depot brings material for building 150 birdhouses and sets up a workshop area for kids to build and paint them. Panera Bread and Chipotle are also there, along with the Marines and Army. There is always a great turnout.”
 
For further information on Homewood Chevy Cares, visit HomewoodChevyCares.com or e-mail Malachowski at [email protected].
 

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