“It’s not only good business to give back to the community you serve but it’s the right thing to do. It sends a positive message that you are committed to the people in the community and are willing to go the extra mile for them.”
Donohue’s Lawn Care
For Nick Donohue of Donohue Lawn Care in Thompson, Connecticut, doing the right thing comes naturally. Throughout his 15-year career in public safety, first as a police officer, and now as a firefighter and paramedic, he has lived by that ethos in both his personal and professional life.
And if being a first responder wasn’t enough Donohue recently registered to be a GreenCare for Troops volunteer and when its sister program – SnowCare for Troops – expanded to include healthcare professionals he didn’t hesitate to throw his services behind the cause.
“It’s not only good business to give back to the community you serve but it’s the right thing to do,” says Donohue, a married father of three. “It sends a positive message that you are committed to the people in the community and are willing to go the extra mile for them.”
Donohue got into the lawn care and landscape market when he, like many firefighters and paramedics often do, was looking for a more consistent second income on his off days from the department. He had dabbled doing various landscape services over the years but in July 2016 he decided to add green industry professional to his resume as a second occupation.
Donohue Lawn Care is a year around business offering a wide array of services including lawn care, yard maintenance, hardscaping, snow removal and even exterior flea and tick treatments. The New England native has grown his business over the last four years by following a simple formula – honesty, transparency and taking pride in his work.
“We’ll do the job right, we’ll follow through on what we promised, and we’ll follow up to make sure the customer is satisfied,” says Donohue. “We build relationships with customers, not one-off jobs.”
In addition to two full-time employees, Donohue employs fellow firefighters, paramedics and police officers looking for extra income on their off days. The arrangement benefits Donohue and his customers.
“Identifying consistent labor is a big issue in the landscape industry and we’re fortunate to be able to tap into a labor pool that is known for its reliability,” says Donohue. “Customers also get the peace of mind the individuals working on their yard have backgrounds built on service.”
Donohue found out about Project EverGreen and its GreenCare and SnowCare for Troops after hearing about it on Turf’s Up radio. The fact many of his colleagues in the department are also veterans made signing on ever more appealing and rewarding.
“Many of the people that work for us have military backgrounds and the idea they can give back to military families is very important,” says Donohue. “They know what it’s like to sacrifice and have their family sacrifice, so they are totally onboard.”
Because of his job as a paramedic Donohue has witnessed first-hand the stress the pandemic has brought upon healthcare workers and first responders.
“We see the reality of the pandemic every day,” says Donohue. “The stress it has put on families of those afflicted with the disease and those who care for them. There are times when I feel like I’ve aged more in the last year than in the previous 15.”
Identifying healthcare heroes to assist through GreenCare for Troops and now through the expanded SnowCare for troops initiative isn’t hard for Donohue. His efforts to build relationships with customers and willingness to listen made it easy to identify worthy recipients.
This fall Donohue did a fall cleanup for an ER nurse and he plans on taking care of her snow removal this winter. He also plans on providing services to a local fire department chaplain who had coronavirus and is undergoing chemotherapy treatments. And there are many more Donohue and fellow volunteers could help this winter.
“Covid has complicated things for everyone and our goal is to provide some relief and make things simpler for them,” says Donohue. “These are prideful and hard-working people who don’t want the spotlight but who are very appreciative of the gesture.”
Donohue says the stressful times we all live in call for people to be good to one another. He wants to remind people that there is still plenty of good in the world and that it starts close to home supporting those who support us.
For contractors wondering if they have the time or capacity to register for GreenCare or SnowCare for Troops, Donohue says it takes a lot less time than they may think and that the reward of knowing you did something good for both an individual and the community is immense.
“In the grand scheme it costs very little to help these individuals with their snow removal needs this winter,” says Donohue. “Healthcare professionals and first responders can’t call off work because their driveways are full of drifts. People are depending on them and making it easier for them to carry on their duties is something we’re proud to do.”
During these challenging times, the need is greater than ever to help our fellow Americans who are serving on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. As winter approaches, there will be a need to assist our healthcare professionals and first responders serving on the front lines with snow removal services and Project EverGreen’s SnowCare for Troops program is ready to help.
SnowCare for Troops Cares for Our Healthcare Heroes Program
Project EverGreen, along with program sponsor BOSS Snowplow, announces the formation of the SnowCare for Troops Cares for Our Healthcare Heroes program.
To participate, SnowCare for Troops volunteers are asked to nominate frontline healthcare professionals in their community to receive snow and ice removal services. Volunteers are encouraged to identify potential recipients through neighborhood groups, school or church groups or social media. The expanded program will run through April 1, 2021.
Once an individual or family has been identified and parameters of service established, SnowCare for Troops volunteers are asked to provide the name, address and list of services provided to Project EverGreen for its database to ensure they are properly matched in the database.
Are you ready to step up and become a volunteer for a health care hero or military family? Register today at https://projectevergreen.org/about-the-program-volunteers/
The Title Sponsor of the GreenCare for Troops program is Nufarm. Platinum Partners include Toro and SiteOne Landscape Supply. The Gold Partner is Arborjet/Ecologel and the Silver Partner is the Propane Education and Research Council