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StorageMart Self-Storage Facility Featured on ‘Returning the Favor’ Reality Series

March 6, 2020

2 Min Read
StorageMart Self-Storage Facility Featured on ‘Returning the Favor’ Reality Series

StorageMart, which operates more than 200 self-storage properties across Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States, was featured this week on an episode of “Returning the Favor,” an online reality series hosted by Mike Rowe that highlights people making a difference in their communities. The March 2 show focused on firefighter Drew Gerken, founder of The Furniture Project, an Omaha, Neb., charity that delivers furniture and household items to people in need. Gerken is part of StorageMart’s “Store It Forward” initiative, through which the operator provides service help, sponsorships, and discounted and donated storage space, according to a press release.

StorageMart began supporting Gerken’s efforts shortly after he launched his charity in 2013. He’s used two side-by-side units at the operator’s Scott Circle location in Omaha to store items donated to him or that he collects on his own, the release stated. “The ability to acquire all of these things has to be accompanied by storage,” Gerken said. “The storage is almost a coequal component for this project.”

At the end of each “Returning the Favor” episode, the feature subject receives a gift from the show to assist in his charitable work. In his installment, Gerken walked into what he thought was a surprise birthday party for a friend, only to be greeted by hundreds of friends, family and colleagues celebrating his accomplishments. He was presented with a new moving truck to transport donated items, along with bunk beds from Sleep in Heavenly Peace, another StorageMart charitable partner, which makes beds for children.

Gerken also received use of a third storage unit at the Scott Circle property, with the cost covered for four years by StorageMart and “Returning the Favor.” “It was totally surreal,” Gerken said. “What choked me up the most was thinking about all the people we help and that we're going to be able to help even more of them.”

Sarah Yourgrau, co-executive producer of the show, said she hopes the episode will inspire others to get involved in their communities, realizing they can make a sizable, positive impact without the charitable work taking over their lives.

“I don't think I've cried tears of joy that much since my wedding day,” said Kevin Lanning, a StorageMart regional manager who was formerly the site manager at the Scott Circle facility. “I lost my voice for two whole days because of all the yelling and cheering for Drew and his organization.”

“Returning the Favor” is a Facebook Watch Original and can be viewed from its Facebook page.

Founded in 1999 and based in Columbia, Mo., StorageMart is privately owned and operated by the Burnam Family, which has been in the storage industry for three generations. Its portfolio consists of more than 16 million square feet of storage. It serves more than 75,000 self-storage customers, and operates in Chinese, English, Punjabi, Quebecois French and Spanish.

Webster County Citizen, StorageMart Appears on Episode of ‘Returning the Favor’ With Mike Rowe

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