Among our core values here at TCA Electric, we always strive to put community outreach and service at the top of our list. This often takes the form of donations, sponsorships, and supporting the many volunteer efforts of our team members right here in Vancouver. In early 2020, however, the TCA team participated in a community outreach project together, in Maneadero, Mexico. We helped build houses with Breakthrough Academy, having a lot of fun and learning more about ourselves in the process. Read on to hear more about the project!
Building homes for families in need
Childhood poverty and homelessness is a significant issue in Mexico, where more than 21 million children live in poverty, according to UNICEF. Quality of housing can also be an issue, as those with homes can lack basic attributes such as a floor or electricity. TCA founder Seán Tobin and the rest of the Breakthrough Academy group visited orphanages and families in the Maneadero area; as Tobin notes, many people “live on dirt floors, they’re lucky if they have four walls.”
For this reason, Breakthrough Academy set out to build houses in the area to make an impact. Based in Vancouver, Breakthrough Academy works with trade businesses to help them succeed, educating tradespeople on matters such as management, hiring, and marketing strategies. With so many trade businesses in their network, a service project like this was the perfect way to bring these businesses together and make a positive impact.
How did TCA contribute?
For this project, our TCA team participated in many areas of the construction of these homes. This included some minor electrical work, but also installing windows and doors, as well as cutting trusses and installing shingles on the roofs of these homes. TCA founder Sean Tobin recalls painting siding and drawing interest from the three children whose home the team was building. The children came to help paint, and then, says Tobin, “We had fun playing around and singing songs.” Overall, it was a time for many different people from all walks of life—from electricians and roofers to children—to come together on an impactful project and make a difference.
Why do service projects?
There are many ways to give back, and we often donate in the form of both contributions and sponsorships. But TCA feels it’s important to volunteer as well, in order to fully appreciate the impact of community outreach efforts. “To give money, you don’t really see the end result,” said Tobin. “You might see a picture of a family or something, but here you’re meeting them, you’re seeing what they have or don’t have. […] So [the experience of volunteering], to me, is amazing.”
How is TCA affected by projects like this?
Working on service projects, and with Breakthrough Academy in general, has had a positive impact on TCA’s values, says Tobin. “Since being at Breakthrough Academy, we’ve learned so much. Our company values actually keep getting stronger year by year, and sometimes they’ll even change and be more important.” It’s always important to give back and help others—but volunteering reminds us of how meaningful service and community outreach are to us personally, too.
TCA Electric: Committed to Community Outreach
Giving back has always been a big part of our work here at TCA Electric. In an industry like electrical work, we have an acute understanding of how much folks need specialized services—and how difficult it can be to go without, whether it’s electricity, running water, or a roof over your head. If you have an upcoming service project and you want us to be involved, feel free to reach out to our team!