Our Purpose at Toyota Industries Commercial Finance (TICF) is to enable the movement of goods to do good. During our day-to-day operations, we see this purpose come to life through our financing options for Toyota Material Handling forklifts, Hino trucks, and material-handling equipment. Equipment financed by TICF is crucial to the distribution and logistics ecosystem as the product is moved throughout the supply chain to get it where it is needed.

During a recent visit, TICF donated $15,000 to the North Texas Food Bank (NTFB), providing access to 75,000 meals for families in need. Over 40 TICF Associates joined NTFB to work a volunteer shift in the distribution center to celebrate the donation.

It was here that our Associates saw our purpose come to life. After volunteers packed produce and food items for the Food 4 Kids program, the goods were moved using our products, including Toyota Material Handling pallet jacks and forklifts. During the two-day volunteer event, the TICF Produce volunteer team helped pack 36 pallets, totaling 1,440 bags and 22,920 pounds of food and produced 23,500 meals. It was amazing to witness first-hand the equipment we finance being a part of this ecosystem, helping to transport food items to communities that need them the most.

In addition to volunteering with the NTFB, the TICF team supported the food bank by hosting a friendly food drive competition. The team collected 3,921 pounds of donated food items, which produced 3,268 meals for the community. Additionally, TICF donated $25,000 to the NTFB to help feed those in need.

Joseph Rufener, Remarketing Coordinator, shared his experience about volunteering for the first time; read his story: 

Being my first volunteer event at TICF, I came to the occasion with little to no expectations. The bar was quickly set high as my experience was positive and affirming. I was immediately struck by the rapport between TICF and NTFB. Based on the friendly morning greetings and light conversation, it was clear that the relationship between the two organizations was firmly established. As the TICF volunteers trickled into the lobby before our shift, I was pleasantly surprised to see several familiar faces who had returned multiple times to volunteer. In addition to giving back, this event helped me connect with co-workers from other departments with whom I had little to no interaction until then.

For me, the day’s highlight occurred about twenty minutes into our shift. The volunteers were arranged into roles along a pseudo assembly line formation (pickers, baggers, and weighers). The roles were straightforward, but there was an awkwardness as everyone learned how to function together. But then, after about twenty minutes, everything clicked. Perhaps it was the friendly atmosphere or the upbeat music playing in the background; everyone suddenly became confident in their roles. The pickers remembered how many items went into each meal, baggers began checking for tears in the plastic bags, and weighers perfected tying off each parcel. The rest of the shift seemed to fly by, with many of the volunteers expressing a hint of melancholy when it was over.   

This volunteer event reframed my understanding of TICF’s company culture. Many companies engage in charitable activities. Many companies spend considerable resources informing clients and the public about their philanthropic activities. Emphasizing publicity over charity does not negate the good of said charity, but it does indicate the priorities of the companies that engage in it. This is different from the approach Toyota Commercial Finance takes. Volunteering at the North Texas Food Bank demonstrated that TICF places the good of the community far above good press.

Toyota’s Core Values are important. That is a given. However, a person could read over the list a thousand times and still not understand what they truly mean. Understanding comes little by little by witnessing and participating in small acts that benefit others. In these small acts of charity, understanding changes from abstract ideas to something more concrete. That is how this event connected me to the company and our culture. Volunteering and participating in this modest deed made me understand Toyota’s Core Values better.

I look forward to participating in more volunteer events at the North Texas Food Bank and our other community partners.     

Joseph Rufener

Remarketing Coordinator