COVID-19 has changed life as many people know it. Nevertheless, life goes on. While large social gatherings have been prohibited across the nation, people are finding unique ways to celebrate special moments like anniversary’s, tying the knot, baby showers, and birthdays. Yet for some, funding celebratory moments can be a challenge due to the impact of COVID-19 on the economy. In response, Tabitha Salomon, founder and CEO of Party Dash, created the “Spread Joy” relief program to allow parents to donate party supplies to families in need.
According to Slackline, the events and party supplies industry is down 55% and is in the top 15 fastest-declining categories due to the pandemic.
Salomon launched Party Dash at the beginning of 2020—and she is already giving back so that parents can host fun virtual or household parties and bring their children joy. One hundred percent of profits from the program will go to the COVID-19 relief effort.
We spoke with Salomon about her journey into entrepreneurship and her mission to spread joy during these uncertain times.
Meet Tabitha Salomon
What led you to create Party Dash?
I’m that friend who constantly brings communities of people together. I believe that events and parties are a pathway to connection. About two years ago, I was working at Google and I thought perhaps there’s a fun opportunity to add value in the space by doing something novel or to do something that perhaps hadn’t been done well before. I started to talk to other people like myself who love to get people together for milestone events like your kids’ birthday parties, your friend’s baby shower, etc. I kept hearing over and over again that busy parents would find it frustrating because they’re visiting three to five stores on average to piecemeal party supplies together when they walk to a store or a party store, it was usually chaotic and overwhelming.
In one of those conversations, I had a mom say to me, ‘I feel like someone’s thrown up on me when I walk into a party store. I will never forget that. That is such a visual description of how bad the experience is. Oftentimes, products are outdated and poor quality. So, when I was thinking about how we’re going to bring ‘party back to life’, our vision was to essentially make curated boxes that are conveniently shipped to that busy parent’s door. And we took it a step further by saying let’s also think about being a conscious brand. Today, our products are sustainably sourced. Over 80% of the products on our platform are biodegradable. And, we’re always looking for a mission to give back to our community.
Spreading Joy During Uncertain Times
People are hosting virtual parties on Zoom and social media platforms like Instagram Live. Even though we’re living in this moment of uncertainty, tell us more about your decision to help families get in the spirit of celebrating during these times.
Most party suppliers are essentially like, ‘Hey, we’re just gonna like not sell for the next couple of months because people aren’t having parties.’ And we thought, No! If anything, it’s when people are living with fear, anxiety, and doubt is when we should be the light. We should give people a reason to get together and celebrate. And we should be the conduits of those celebrations. So, it’s not that people stop celebrating, it’s how they celebrate that looks different.
To your point, we’re seeing a huge spike in virtual parties that are being done. I was on a call yesterday with a group of five moms who had just finished planning or about to start planning kids’ birthday parties. And they were telling me that they love the fact that they can still make it feel festive.
Knowing that we’re a part of that makes me and my team feel really good about what we’re doing. Essentially, we’re just trying to spread joy and a time that’s full of anxiety and fear.
Spread the Good News
How can families apply to be selected as beneficiaries of the Spread Joy campaign?
For the next two months, applications will be open. We’re seeing a lot of nonprofits, like the Boys and Girls who are a partner of ours, are getting involved. Essentially what they’re doing is they’re emailing everyone in their communities because they know those parents are usually a bit more low-income. And when income is cut in their household even more—things like this [parties] are the first things to go.
If you have to choose between celebrating and putting a smile on your kid’s face for that one special day or putting food on the table, that’s a really terrible decision and options to choose from as a parent. So, we’re saying to that particular parent, ‘You don’t have to choose anymore, we got your back. We’re going to support you and help you to turn this into a festive and memorable experience for your kid’s birthday.’
We’re also thinking a lot about the folks that are on the front lines. The nurses and the health techs who are working around the clock fighting COVID-19. When people get home, the last thing they want to do is go online and shop or go on Pinterest and put the boards together. Or, go on Amazon and piecemeal their event together.
Now, all they have to do is spend two minutes applying for this. And then we’ll ship out the box that fits that particular theme or occasion that their kid loves. We’re really thinking about these two communities and others who’ve been negatively affected. And again, with this mission of helping to spread joy.
If you’d like to donate to the cause and spread joy or benefit from the program, click here to get involved and or apply.