Radio Show
Collaborative Connection Radio Show. Laurel Petsas, Gwen Gustafson, Kelly Lorenzen, Debi Nielson.
Laurel Petsas, Gwen Gustafson, Kelly Lorenzen, and Debi Nielson.

Collaborative Connections Radio Show and Podcast is hosted by Kelly Lorenzen and sponsored by KLM Consulting. The show is broadcasted live from the Phoenix Business RadioX Studio in Arizona. Collaborative Connections is a radio series created to bring entrepreneurs, nonprofits, and associations together to build relationships, foster collaboration, and grow a stronger community together. Our hope is that listeners and guests alike will walk away with a golden nugget and/or a resource for their business.

Listen in on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Phoenix Business Radio X, Spotify, or live.

For the first show, Kelly had the honor of being in the studio with three amazing people…

Gwen Gustafson, Arizona Fun Services. Collaborative Connection Radio Show
Gwen Gustafson, Arizona Fun Services. Collaborative Connection Radio Show

Gwen, with Arizona Fun Services. Arizona Fun Services is a party and costume shop in Tempe. They also do school carnivals, company picnics, and an in-school holiday gift shop for kids. Gwen is active in Local First Arizona and the Tempe Chamber, as an ambassador. She also volunteers at Lost Our Home Pet rescue.

While Gwen was on the show, she mentioned she was looking for the following:
“I’m looking for any connections with PTOs, PTAs, CEOs of corporations or the marketing departments that want to put on a good event for their employees and/or customers. People say, “What is your niche?” There’s a lot, we have a lot of niches, so any – Costumes too. Any person that I’d rather they come to our store and have a great experience than go to any of the pop-up stores and not have such a great experience.”

Gwen also shared:
“We’re partners with toys for tots. So how that works is in 2019, Fun Services is donating $100,000 worth of toys to Toys for Tots. But we also have Toys for Tots sponsored items in the 2019 line that as you buy that, then a toy goes to Toys for Tots for this next year. But Fun Services originated the program. So we are the only company that has a brand new line every year. We guarantee all the items so you’re not stuck with anything that’s broken. Then we take everything back at the end.
So it’s a perfect win-win, you pay at the end. So it’s perfect for the PTAs, PTOs, there are no upfront costs. We do customer service, everything that you need along the way. I think the kids remember the most about school. Yeah. You’re learning things and that’s always with you. But I mean I remember as a kid doing all those extracurricular things in elementary school. Those are the memories that we have.”

Laurel Petsas, Maggie's Place. Collaborative Connection Radio Show
Laurel Petsas, Maggie's Place. Collaborative Connection Radio Show

Laurel, with Maggie’s Place also joined us in studio. Maggie’s Place is a nonprofit in the Valley. They target and serve the most vulnerable population in the community, so women experiencing poverty and their children. Maggie’s Place serves them by providing life-changing support and services at any point in this. So they come to Maggie’s Place at any point in their pregnancy and they typically stay for nine months to a year after that baby’s born, and using their different supportive services, whether in the home or at our Family Success Center.

While Laurel was in the studio, she gave us a little more info about Maggie’s place and what they need:

“We have four homes throughout the Valley that our mothers stay with us at. We also have two transitional housing units. So one of those is more geared toward the reunification process. One is that next step up after they graduate our program. So they do have a brand teach month. They kind of are getting back up on their feet. Then we have our Family Success Center, which also acts as our coordinating office for our current and alumni moms. Then we have one home in Ohio actually.
Always expanding. Yeah, always growing. 

We are actually going to be coming up on our 20th year anniversary. So our oldest children are now 20 years old. It is amazing, they’re going off to college and starting their lives.

Christmas is just around the corner. It’s going to be here before we know it. Yeah, we’re already looking out for collaborations and partnerships within the community for toys of all ages, food for Thanksgiving, that kind of thing…

We do have our Amazon Wishlist as well that’s kind of connected to Christmas; which makes it really easy. We found instead of sending that list out, people can find us under our Amazon page. It shows what kind of their kids’ interests are at the moment of each age range.

So it works perfectly because they just click and it ships right to our Family Success Center. Our moms shop for their children, which we found to be really empowering for them. So about a week or so before Christmas, they come by. We call it the Christmas House. The volunteers in the community that really help out with that. But they separate all of the donations by age range and gender. Our moms walked through, and it’s a joy to be experienced, and have them feel more empowered picking out the items for their kids.

We’re also always in need of diapers! And instead of newborn, we actually need like size three to six usually, which is always a huge need for us. 

Debi Nielson, 88.7 The Pulse. Collaborative Connection Radio Show
Debi Nielson, 88.7 The Pulse. Collaborative Connection Radio Show

Debi with 88.7 the Pulse and 90.7 Neon was our guest as well.

She spoke about the radio stations and EVIT, saying “They are two community-supported radio stations that just happened to be run by high school students from various East Valley schools. They are actually a public school system and tuition-free, but they don’t come to them for their full day of school. The kids go to their home schools for half a day. Then they come to us for half a day. They get advanced career training.”

“So anything from cosmetology to culinary arts, which is where my heart is, you can learn to fly a plane, fire sciences, you can weld, car collision. My car was hit my second week there. Thank you, students. But I take it to the collision center and they’re going to fix it for me. So it’s really a great institution.”

“We are community-funded and community-supported. As a radio station that’s part of a school, we’re non-commercial. Now, does that mean that we can’t run your messages and help you promote your business? We absolutely can. But we’re run more like PBS Channel 8 or K Block or K Jazz. So we like to help support our local businesses by keeping their money in the community because our money stays in the community, and help do things that other radio stations typically can’t do.”

Kelly loves collaboration, which is why she started this radio show.

We’re all in the community; we’re all local; We’re all wanting to further our businesses, so why not do it together.

Tune in on the third Thursday of every month at 1:00 PM. Listen Live Here

Collaborative Connection Radio Show Episode 1

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