Krista Clement (MBA 2013) the Founder of Helper, Helper is featured on Missouri.com

Krista Clement (MBA 2013) the Founder of Helper, Helper is featured on Missouri.com

Alumna Krista Clement was featured on Missouri.com where she discussed her company Helper Helper, a platform (app and website) for community service. Clement graduated from Saint Louis University with her MBA in 2013 MBA and is a Teach For America alumna.

The Q&A with Clement is included below and the full article is available at Missouri.com.

Helper Helper was founded in St. Louis by Krista Clement who is a St. Louis Teach For America alumni, Saint Louis University MBA graduate, and 2004 -2008 University Women’s Basketball Player.

Helper Helper is a platform (app and website) for community service. It’s especially useful for college athletic departments that are managing 300 – 800 student athletes and connecting them to community service opportunities. Krista started Helper Helper because she believes experiences in the community (via service) can increase personal growth and create a positive impact on the community. The platform connects people with opportunities, tracks the hours they complete, and displays the information team by team in a ranking based on hours.

Missouri.com: Where does your passion for social responsibility and entrepreneurship come from?

Krista: My passion for entrepreneurship was sparked after hearing the DynaLabs founders’ story in a class I took at St. Louis University. They were able to take the experiences they had in prior jobs to solve a problem they saw within their market. They made the process of starting something new and having the courage to take a risk seem so exciting and challenging. After that class, I knew I had the entrepreneurial bug and I was excited to make something of my own.

My desire to create a company that helps build community comes both from the amazing students I taught and the voice of my grandmother telling me to be a “Helper Helper” girl. My students in St. Louis were selfless and giving. They taught me so much. Many of them needed someone to believe in them and hold them to high expectations. I grew up with exceptional role models. So when I was thinking about Helper Helper, I knew mentoring was one place where college student-athletes could both learn from k-12 students, but also help the k-12 students understand that they can accomplish anything they set their minds to do. If either the college student-athletes or k-12 students are positively impacted through Helper Helper, then I will be very proud.

Missouri.com: Can you talk about the process from first having the initial idea for Helper Helper to taking it to market? What resources did you find most useful along the way?

Krista: The Helper Helper idea resulted from my experiences as a college student athlete and Teach For America corps member. I came up with the idea and started to call colleges to gage the actual “pain” of running meaningful community engagement programs in athletic departments. The need for a platform to simplify the process of organizing, coordinating, and tracking the service opportunity was there, so I went in search for someone who could create the technology.

I’ve worked with a variety of technology teams – I started with a student developer at St. Louis University and now we work with a company out of Ann Arbor called Enlighten. This support has been one of the keys to our success thus far. Another key was being fortunate enough to have relationships within the NCAA that allowed me to take the platform to market. However, the biggest key and most useful resource has been my fantastic mentors along this journey.

Missouri.com: How does Helper Helper, make the process of volunteering easier and more engaging?

Krista: With Helper Helper, the student-athletes can look through opportunities to volunteer that are relevant to them and their interests! They can see other people who have committed to volunteer -making for a fun social aspect. They are also able to see data (that was never easily accessible to them) on the teams across their campus – making for a fun and healthy competition around community impact.

From the volunteer coordinator side, the platform centralizes all the communication involved in community service. It saves them time and collects data that can be used to support students as they create their resumes and apply for postgraduate scholarships.

Missouri.com: Can you share some details behind partnering with the NCAA to help them run a competition around community service with a number of their member schools? What aspect of this partnership are you most excited about?

Krista: We are really excited to work with the NCAA on the Team Works™ Award because it will give us an opportunity to get Helper Helper in the hands of a number of schools. This partnership will allow us to grow in a way that we couldn’t do on our own. It’s a chance to build awareness about the amazing things schools and student athletes do in communities.

Missouri.com: What’s one marketing strategy that’s worked well for you?

Krista: The best marketing strategy for us has been to get on the road and visit schools and volunteer coordinators across the country! Relationships are key! We’ve also been able to work with some big name schools that has helped spread awareness about Helper Helper through word of mouth.

Missouri.com: How do you plan to keep the momentum going?

Krista: We will keep our momentum going by supporting our clients and by continually improving our platform! Ultimately we want to help our clients establish the “Helper Helper Habit” with all their users. As student-athletes graduate, the experiences they have through Helper Helper will give them the desire to remain socially responsible wherever they decide to go.


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