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    Community Service Spotlight: Kroger, Tom Thumb & ExxonMobil

    Jack Link's, Parker's, QuickChek, Rutter's and Sheetz also make contributions.

    By Danielle Romano, Convenience Store News

    NATIONAL REPORT — Giving back through community service efforts and charitable 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:

    ExxonMobil

    As part of the ExxonMobil Foundation's 2016 Educational Matching Gift Program, ExxonMobil and its employees contributed more than $50 million to institutions of higher education across the United States. Last year, employees, retirees, directors and surviving spouses contributed $17.5 million, which was matched with $32.6 million in unrestricted grants from the ExxonMobil Foundation to more than 850 universities, colleges and organizations dedicated to higher education.

    ExxonMobil’s program matches donor pledges on a 3:1 basis up to $7,500 to qualified colleges and universities in the United States, as well as the American Indian College Fund, Hispanic Scholarship Fund and the United Negro College Fund. More than $630 million has been contributed to such American institutions over the more than 50 years the company has offered the Educational Matching Gift Program.

    Jack Link's

    Just in time for National Jerky Day on June 12, Jack Link's launched Fueling the Front Lines, a company-wide initiative dedicated to refueling and restoring strength to people and communities affected by natural disaster, by teaming up with Team Rubicon, a veteran-led nonprofit that unites the skills of military veterans with first responders to provide disaster response services to people in need. 

    On National Jerky Day, any purchase of Jack Link's Original, Teriyaki and Peppered Jerky snacks in store and online helped fund additional Team Rubicon disaster relief services in communities across the United States. 

    The multi-year partnership will come to life through financial support, product donations and other critical resources, including a pledge from Jack Link’s team members to volunteer in their communities and alongside Team Rubicon. 

    Parker’s Convenience Stores

    Savannah, Ga.-based Parker’s has made donations to Savannah-area public schools through its Fueling the Community Program. The latest contributions include: $20,000 to Savannah-Chatham County Public Schools; $9,000 to Effingham County Public Schools; and $8,500 to Bulloch County Schools.

    Parker’s donates a portion of every gallon of gas sold on the first Wednesday of each month to area schools through the Fueling the Community program. PumpPal club members can select which school will receive the proceeds from their Fueling the Community gas purchase.  

    QuickChek Corp.

    From June 10 through July 15, QuickChek customers will have the opportunity to support veterans, service members and military families through the convenience store’s “dog tag” campaign. For the fourth year, QuickChek customers can purchase $1 paper “dog tags”, which will be signed and posted on the walls of QuickChek stores.

    All proceeds from the in-store promotion will benefit Hope For The Warriors, a national nonprofit dedicated to restoring a sense of self, family and hope for post-9/11 service members and military families. In 2016, Whitehouse Station, N.J.-based QuickChek raised more than $163,000 through the “dog tag” campaign.

    In addition to the annual “dog tag” campaign, QuickChek gives to Hope For The Warriors through a summer charity golf outing and sponsorship of Hope For The Warriors events. Since 2014, QuickChek has raised more than $375,000 benefiting Hope For The Warriors and its programs.

    Rutter’s Farm Stores

    Rutter’s Children’s Charities raised more than $175,000 for Central Pennsylvania charities at its 15th annual golf outing. The 2017 outing was the most successful, according to the company, with $100,000 of the money raised allocated to funding the 2017 Rutter’s Vote With Your Dollars and Rutters Rewards Schools programs.

    Since its inception in 2002, the two-day golf outing has raised more than $1.72 million for children’s charities in Central Pennsylvania.

    Sheetz Inc.

    Sheetz for the Kidz held its 19th annual For the Kidz Golf Classic May 21-22 at the Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina. The annual tournament is a major fundraising effort for Sheetz for the Kidz, which is a charitable organization operated by employees of Sheetz. Last year's tournament raised approximately $760,000.

    Sheetz for the Kidz raised more than $22.9 million and has helped more than 100,000 children in the communities surrounding Sheetz stores in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Ohio since its inception in 1992.

    The Kroger Co.

    The Kroger Co. continued its commitment to the USO by donating $1 million to the organization. The company will also partner with the USO to host events for service members and their families nationwide through August. These events include:

    • Honor Your Hero. Customers can honor their personal heroes on the Honoring Our Heroes website, and their submissions will be displayed on a special Hero Wall there. 
    • Purchase a Donation Card. Customers may pick up a $5 or $10 donation card from the USO display in their local Kroger and present it at checkout. The tax deductible donation will be presented to a military family in need on a Kroger gift card.
    • Give Your Hero a Gift Card. Customers can donate a patriotic Kroger gift card to a service member.
    • Our Turn to Serve. Kroger associates are partnering with USO volunteers across the country to put on family BBQ's and picnics across the country as a way to show gratitude to service members and their families.
    • Share a Coke With a Meal. The Kroger Co. and Coca-Cola have formed a joint partnership with the USO, in which Coca-Cola will donate $50,000 to the organization.

    Tom Thumb Food Stores Inc.

    South Florida-based Tom Thumb Stores raised $30,000 for local charities during its second annual Mahi Mayhem Fishing Tournament. The operator donated $15,000 each to Samuel’s House and Lotus House — which provide sanctuary and support for women and children.

    "We are excited to be working with our local South Florida communities and are genuinely pleased to support wonderful organizations such as Samuel's House and Lotus House. We are also grateful to the many vendors who support and help to grow the Tom Thumb Mahi Mayhem event into a fantastic experience that truly benefits everyone involved,” said Jim & Tom McCarthy, owners of Tom Thumb Food Stores Inc.

    By Danielle Romano, Convenience Store News
    • About Danielle Romano Danielle Romano is associate managing editor for EnsembleIQ's Convenience Store News and CSNews.com. Prior to joining CSNews full-time in January 2015, Romano served as a freelancer for CSNews, with a concentration on social media, while working as product content copywriter/editor for Myron Corp., a promotional product company. Romano has a bachelor's degree in print journalism from William Paterson University.

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