SAF Celebrates Stress Awareness Month #StressLess

Have you ever had the opportunity to hand out free bouquets to strangers? 

This should be a mandatory activity for anyone in the floral industry. Last week, I volunteered with About Flowers and SAF to participate in an amazing give away across the city of San Francisco.

Jenni Sparks and Nic Faitos

The occasion was highlighting what many of us already know, flowers reduce personal and professional stress.  April has been designated Stress Awareness Month and a team of us set out to give flowers to unsuspecting people and help them reduce their stress. #StressLess

Wow, what an amazing experience. Passersby were surprised by a group of people dressed in wild purple shirts with a groovy hippie micro-bus handing away flowers, but once they realized we weren't some sort of cult or selling time shares, they welcomed us with open arms, literally.

It was so interesting to watch business people, tourists and families rushing to lunch or to their next appointment or attraction, only to notice flowers being given away, and immediately, their plans change.

You saw it in people's eyes and in their posture and of course, in their smiles. They were absolutely delighted by the bouquets of tulips, iris and lilies. 

This immediate intimacy and warmth could only come from something as natural, and joy-bringing as flowers. I am certain that everyone that received a bouquet had a better, more stress-free day, thanks to SAF and About Flowers.

The bonus about this whole event was the other flower lovers we volunteered with. Spending the day with Harold Hoogasian, a San Francisco legend, and who was the Grateful Dead's florist was such a treat! Talk about flower power.
In from New York City was Nic Faitos owner of Starbright Floral Design in Manhattan, guess who used to do the flowers for Anthony Bourdain? Nic brought the raucous vibe of New York to this event.

From the East Bay was Valerie Ow and her daughter, Jacqueline, owners of J. Miller Flowers and Gifts in Oakland. Jacqueline is training on the business side of their family flower shop, it was inspiring to hang out with a 27 year old who is leaving a career in finance to work with flowers.

Valerie is one of the longest running participants in the Bouquets To Art event at the deYoung Museum in Golden Gate Park. Sun Valley has been a major flower sponsor for this event for years.

Jenni in action!

Of course, none of this would have been possible without Jenni Sparks, VP of Marketing for SAF. Her leadership and energy led our team and sparked joy across the city. I love when someone’s name reflects what they do!

Raise a stem to Flower Power!