Staff from Sight & Sound Systems in Loudoun County, Va., have donated manpower and equipment to numerous HomeAid projects.
Kris Kaymanesh, president of Sight and Sound Systems, founded his company 24 years ago in order to address the electronic needs of those in Loudoun County and beyond. Since then, his wife of 32 years, along with his three children (ages 24-29) have joined him. Together, they help homeowners with technology services, such as home automation and home theater systems. Although Sight & Sound Systems is accustomed to providing sophisticated technology services, what Kaymanesh and his family really enjoy is reaching out to those members in the community whose needs are much more basic. Find out why staff from Sight & Sound Systems generously share their systems expertise with HomeAid and with those who struggle with housing needs every day.
Q: Can you tell us about your company?
A: Sight & Sound Systems provides electronic solutions for our clients—not just equipment, but we sit down with clients to discuss their specific electronic needs. Their needs can be as basic as a couple of phone and video jacks, all the way up to internet and remote home security systems. We often create a level of human comfort – putting a little bit of a personal touch in certain situations. We work with Veterans Administration (VA) hospitals and other organizations to bring comfort to injured veterans. Many of them need help with daily functioning; we have situations where a person can push a button on their wheelchair, and their entire kitchen cabinetry can lower for their use.
Q: How did you become involved with HomeAid Northern Virginia?
A: We became involved because of our strong relationship with Van Metre Homes. By nature, I am one who likes to be involved in charitable projects; aside from HomeAid, we have done projects for Wounded Warrior and Operation Finally Home, among others. I have always felt that it’s good to do a healthy business, but it is equally important to be involved in the community and to contribute to those who are less fortunate.
We have been doing projects with HomeAid for seven or eight years now. We contribute where we can. During one of the more recent projects, we were asked to provide some surveillance cameras and some safety-related electronics for people who were living in a shelter for domestic violence survivors. We have done other similar projects.
Q: Can you talk about the SevaTruck event?
A: SevaTruck serves food periodically to people living in the tent city in Woodbridge, and our involvement in this was a joint effort between our company and the staff: We announced that we would like to participate, and all of our employees donated what they could. Then we took those funds and put them toward blankets, gloves, socks, food bars, and similar items. So, our staff really gets credit for that. We all enjoyed it.
Q: Can you say which is your favorite HomeAid project that you have been involved in?
A: Actually, no. That’s why there are so many colors in the rainbow. Each has its own beauty. To us, it’s a matter of making a difference and participating as much as possible. Obviously, there are time and financial limitations at times, but we always like to contribute. Then, if it has been started, we don’t pick which one is our favorite. But I really don’t have one—each is important in its own way.
Q: What is it about HomeAid that keeps your company so dedicated to its mission?
A: I am originally from Iran. In the old world, many people use proverbs to explain their decisions, actions and so on. We have an old proverb that says, “The lantern that can provide light for your home is not needed to be taken to the church or mosque.” What the proverb means is that if you have something you can do to help your immediate surroundings, it is more important to implement it there rather than ship it out to other areas.
There are a lot of good charities out there. However, we have many people right in our own backyards who have had a tough time in life. So, it just makes sense to us to help out those in our immediate surroundings. HomeAid is right at our back door, and the issue of homelessness does not just affect one group of people. It has different tentacles that touch many lives, and we are proud to help our community in this way.
Q: Will you be working on any HomeAid projects in the near future?
A: Sight & Sound Systems has a showroom where we have two nicely decorated home theaters. We told HomeAid that we could provide our showroom theaters for those who don’t normally get to go out and have some fun; we would like to help those struggling with homelessness to see a movie, enjoy dinner and some popcorn. It may not put money in their pockets, but if it puts a smile on their face, it is still good: Our first Lunch and Movie event will be scheduled this Spring with HomeAid Shelter Partners. We will play a movie and provide some food and beverage in the hopes of giving them a fun afternoon out and a happy family memory. We plan to continue to help HomeAid do great work looking out for those who are in need.