Reader's Digest salutes Joi Bass, Johanna Sampson
GOODLETTSVILLE, Tenn. — Reader’s Digest is saluting two Dollar General employees for their community service.
The activities of DG employees Joi Bass, in Indianola, Miss., and Johanna Sampson, in Ardmore, Okla., illustrate the company’s mission of serving others as good neighbors in hometown communities, the company said.
For Bass, giving back and serving her community is a family tradition shared among her mother, aunts and sorority sisters. When she moved to Indianola, in 2021, Bass reached out to the local school to see how she could support her community and learned the greatest necessity was feminine care products for students in financial need.
After learning that one in four girls misses school due to lack of access to feminine hygiene products, Bass knew she could help and immediately jumped into action.
Bass created a “Keep it Cute” shelf, which is named after an aunt’s favorite phrase, and stocked with underwear, pads, tampons, and other feminine hygiene products.
To extend support, Bass partnered with other area schools to set up “Keep it Cute” shelves and to provide essential goods beyond feminine care products.
“If you have the opportunity provide and be of service, I know that one day I might not have it and someone else will be able to lend me a hand,” explained Bass.
Dollar General said it has supported Bass’s efforts with product and financial donations through employee-recognition programs, including DG Kindness. Also, Dollar General distribution centers across the country were encouraged to adopt a homeless shelter or women’s shelter to provide feminine hygiene products to women in need as part of March 2023’s Women’s History Month celebrations.
“Dollar General’s focus being serving others just really stuck with me because, I’m like ‘That’s all I do. That’s all I know,’” shared Bass “It’s been great to have Dollar General as a partner in that way, to not only come to work every day for a great company, but they also support my personal initiatives.”
Sampson is being recognized for heeding a call for volunteers at The Landing Bridge, a nonprofit providing support for at-risk youth in Ardmore. She knew it was something she wanted to be part of, although she wasn’t aware of the impact it would make on her personally, DG said.
“The kids really did help restore my faith,” Sampson shared. “They have been through unspeakable things and still have a huge capacity to love and to be open and to learn how you can interact with people and trust them again.”
Through donations from various organizations, including Dollar General, The Landing Bridge regularly provides youth with food, clothes, blankets, and everyday essentials. The nonprofit also relies on volunteers for mentorship, and providing an extra listening ear for thoughts, concerns and dreams.
“If I had to pick a favorite aspect of The Landing Bridge, it would probably have to be how amazing this organization is at serving these kids. That’s really our only mission — to serve these children,” shared Sampson.