A defining moment in our company’s history came during one of our old brainstorming sessions when Simon, Mike and I (the founders of Providence Auto Group) would sit around and ask the question: “How can Providence Auto Group really help people?” The obvious answer is to give people great deals on cars, but we were already going to do that. We wanted to do more. One night after plenty of debate and bouncing dozens of ideas off of each other, somebody came up with it:
“There are single moms struggling to get their kids to school and then hurrying to catch the bus to make it to work on time. There are young couples trying to make ends meet with a baby on the way that have a car, but it breaks down all the time and the heater doesn’t work — and it’s the dead of winter. There are people in our community that desperately need dependable transportation but they can’t afford it. Let’s buy cars for families in need!”
That was our defining moment.
To share a little bit of our personal story, we had talked seriously about starting this company for 18 months until the night we came up with the giving idea. We had even come close to signing on the dotted line for a store in Smyrna. But when the Giving Program became part of who we are, it accelerated things. We didn’t even wait to open our doors before we gave away our first car. We took the money we had been saving to start the business and bought a car for a young couple that needed to get home to Florida after their baby had been released from the NICU at a local hospital. Helping that family was awesome!
Since then, we’ve become more intentional with our giving and have partnered with Mercy Ministries,Thistle Farms and Safe Haven Family Shelter to provide worthy individuals, single parents, and families with dependable transportation. Often, it’s a well cared for trade-in from one of our great customers, like our friend Matt Grimes, who traded in his nice Honda Accord that was used for a recent give.
In a sprawling city like Nashville, the gift of a reliable car can absolutely transform someone’s life. The more cars we sell, the more we can give. Trust us, as much as we love selling cars, giving them away is the best part of our job.