For the Employment Opportunity Training Center (EOTC), winning the inaugural “Cropped” competition, sponsored by AAF Northeast Pennsylvania, in 2016, was the start of a metamorphosis.

Prior to entering the competition, EOTC officials saw that there was a disconnect between their brand and the public’s perception of their brand. Having served the region for more than 30 years, people weren’t 100% sure of what the organization actually did.

This needed to change. Enter ‘Cropped,’ AAF Northeast Pennsylvania’s annual competition that unites the region’s best and brightest creative professional and student talent on four teams, all of whom will vie for the opportunity to rebrand or provide a major creative project for an area non-profit organization. The competition is a take-off on the Food Network’s hit show, “Chopped,” and the last team standing wins.

“We loved the ‘Cropped’ competition,” said Kristin Cianfichi, director of community outreach and resource development for what is now known as Outreach Center for Community Resources. “We underwent not only a complete rebranding, but also a name change afterward, all thanks to ‘Cropped!’ As a non-profit organization, we never would have been able to undertake such a huge change.”

Outreach’s full rebranding was undertaken pro-bono by Lavelle Strategy Group in Scranton and the organization’s full rebrand and relaunch took place this past summer.

“A non-profit should absolutely apply to be a part of ‘Cropped,’” Ms. Cianfichi said. “It increases exposure for any organization participating and, most importantly, the winning organization will benefit from experts in the field of marketing and advertising. We use some of the taglines and slogans that were created during Cropped.”

Non-profit organization applications are open now through Monday, Oct. 15, via www.aafnepa.org/cropped. Ms. Cianfichi has some advice for organizations contemplating getting ‘Cropped.”

“Open yourself up to outside-the-box possibilities, but stay true to your mission and core values,” she said. “It is possible to retain your character while ushering in something new and fresh—and ‘Cropped’ is a great start!”