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NATIONAL REPORT — Giving back through community service efforts and charity donations is a positive force that keeps many retailers and suppliers of this industry moving ahead. On a regular basis, Convenience Store News highlights these philanthropic efforts in this special section.
Here are the latest company spotlights:
Chevron's Fuel Your School program, which launched for the first time last year in King County, Wash., generated $600,000 to fund 497 local public school classroom projects, 189 of which support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) curriculum. Through the program, teachers at 182 public schools in King County received valuable classroom resources, impacting 67,881 students.
Chevron contributed $1 each time customers purchased eight or more gallons of fuel during the month of October at participating Chevron and Texaco stations in King County.
Last year, the Fuel Your School program overall generated more than $8.6 million for local classrooms in 22 U.S. communities and impacted more than 700,000 students with needed supplies. Since its inception in 2010, Fuel Your School has helped fund more than 23,500 classroom projects at more than 4,000 schools in the United States.
Dr Pepper Snapple Group
Dr Pepper Snapple Group renewed its partnership with Keep America Beautiful (KAB) with a $300,000 commitment that will continue to provide recycling opportunities to consumers. Now in its third year, the Dr Pepper Snapple/KAB Park Recycling Grant Program funds the placement of recycling bins within city, regional and state public parks across the nation.
The program accepts applications for recycling bin grants on its website, http://irecycleonthego.wordpress.com. Those eligible to apply are state and local government agencies and other community organizations involved with recycling activities in local, regional and state parks.
In its first two years, the grant program provided more than 1,600 durable, permanent recycling bins. The bins have primarily been used to establish or expand recycling initiatives in park settings like athletic fields, neighborhood parks, walking trails and beaches. In total, 59 grants have been awarded to local governments and community groups in 29 states.
To date, these recycling bins are estimated to have collected more than 250,000 pounds of recyclables in the communities they are placed, according to the beverage company.
During National Autism Awareness Month in April, Herr’s partnered with the Autism Society of America and produced limited-edition Whole Grain Pretzels With Flax Seed & Honey in a specially designed, puzzle-patterned bag filled with ribbon-shaped pretzels in support of autism awareness.
For every bag sold, Herr’s made a 5-cent donation to the Autism Society of America, one of the nation’s leading autism organizations dedicated to improving the lives of those affected by autism spectrum disorder.
Just Born Inc.
Candy manufacturer Just Born Inc. partnered with BAMKO, a global sourcing company focused on providing safe ethically made products, to donate Peeps plush bunnies to the Starlight Children’s Foundation.
On March 20, the first day of spring, Peeps & Co. encouraged fans to give themselves or their friends “bunny ears” and upload the picture to social media with the hashtag #GiveABunny. For every picture posted using the hashtag, Just Born donated a plush bunny to the Starlight Children’s Foundation, a global charity that partners with experts to improve the life and health of kids and families around the world.
The company also donated plush bunnies for every Peeps plush purchased through March 31 as part of the "Buy a Bunny, Give a Bunny” program. The purchase of a 5-inch Peeps plush earned one bunny donation, while the purchase of a giant Peeps plush earned five bunnies donated.
The “Buy a Bunny, Give a Bunny” program also collected donations through Peeps & Co.’s online store and its three brick-and-mortar locations in Bethlehem, Pa., National Harbor in Maryland, and the Mall of America in Minnesota.
West Virginia Marketers & Grocers Association
The West Virginia Marketers & Grocers Association (OMEGA) and the Children’s Home Society of West Virginia launched their fifth-annual “Every Child Deserves A Loving Home Campaign,” a statewide effort to raise funds for Children’s Home Society assistance programs.
From April 10 through May 10, brightly colored paper flowers were sold for $1 at nearly 500 OMEGA-member convenience and grocery stores across the state. Participating OMEGA members included Little General Stores Inc., One Stop, Par Mar Oil Co., BFS Foods Inc., Go-Mart Inc., TWJ Inc., R.T. Rogers Oil Co., DeFazio Oil Co., R.M. Roach & Sons (ROCS) and Kanawha City Foodland.
The funds raised will be used to support child assistance programs, such as emergency child shelters, foster care, adoption, mentoring and early intervention.
Every year since 1986, from Thanksgiving through Christmas, Stewart’s Shops collects and matches donations in its stores to provide financial assistance to local organizations that benefit children under the age of 18.
This year, six organizations in the town of Warwick, N.Y., received grants from Stewart’s Shops' 2014-2015 Holiday Match program. The organizations are the Albert Wisner Public Library Foundation, Backpack Snack Attack, Warwick Community Kitchen, Warwick Ecumenical Food Pantry, Winslow Therapeutic Riding Center, and You Are Beautiful People.
The Spinx Co.
Spinx announced the beneficiaries of its annual charity golf tournament, The Spinx Charity Class. This year's partners are the American Red Cross-Greenvile Chapter, Greenville Tech Foundation, Harvest Hope Food Bank, and Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Carolinas. The charities meet the Spinx charitable mission of improving the health, education and well-being of children in the community.
U-Stop Shops, a division of Lincoln, Neb.-based Whitehead Oil Co., presented a check for $32,000 to the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA). The donation was the result of this year’s Shamrock Drive, an annual fundraiser for MDA Nebraska and was the largest single donation by the company since 2007.