Community Service Spotlight
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 will highlight these philanthropic efforts in this special section.
Here are the latest company spotlights:
Dallas-based 7-Eleven Inc. is doubling the Dallas Police Department's fleet of T3 Series electric standup vehicles (ESV) to help increase safety and reduce crime in downtown Dallas. The T3 -- a zero-gas emission, clean energy three-wheeled personal vehicle with a long battery run time and short recharge time -- is an urban mobility tool for the police department.
"7-Eleven is a great example of what can happen when a corporation sees an opportunity to help the community and seizes it," said city Mayor Mike Rawlings.
For the last two months of 2011, Kangaroo Express customers created 371,637 meals for local families through an in-store promotion benefiting Second Harvest North Florida, a Jacksonville-area Feeding America food bank. Donations were collected in more than 100 Kangaroo Express stores in the Jacksonville area.
The donations -- totaling $53,091.68 -- were raised with partner support from Champion Brands and MillerCoors. The Pantry's Kangaroo Express convenience store chain presented the check to Second Harvest during an event on Friday, March 2.
Marathon Petroleum Corp.
Marathon Petroleum Corp. (MPC) will donate $100,000 to the American Red Cross to provide disaster relief in the Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, West Virginia and Tennessee communities hardest hit by recent tornadoes and spring storms.
MPC will donate $20,000 to the American Red Cross chapters of Clark County, Ind., and Mid-East Kentucky. Donations of $10,000 also will be made to the following chapters: Greater Cincinnati Area; Big Sandy, Ky., Area; Northeast Kentucky; Louisville Area; Central West Virginia; and Greater Chattanooga Area. These hard-hit areas represent communities served by MPC's Marathon and Speedway brands.
BP America gifted $15,000 to the River Road African American Museum in Louisiana. This contribution will help support the continued preservation of the museum's collection of artifacts, buildings and documents. BP America's donation will enhance the museum's exhibits and community programs and strengthen the museum's short- and long-term sustainability objectives.
The River Road region of Louisiana encompasses many rural communities lining both sides of the Mississippi River between Baton Rouge and New Orleans. This opulent and fertile ground was rich for the observation and study of the history of diverse cultures. The community helped establish the museum collection by generously donating family documents, artifacts, photographs, maps, art and eventually buildings. It's been designated as one of America's top 10 African American Museums by American Legacy magazine and is listed as one of the first attractions on the Louisiana African American Heritage Trail.
CHS Inc., along with M&M Co-op, a business unit of CHS, gathered donations of money, food and crops to help raise the equivalent of two million meals for hungry families as part of the CHS Harvest for Hunger food and fund drive.
CHS accepted contributions through March 16 and will deliver them to regional food banks.
MillerCoors granted $125,000 to four small-business owners through its MillerCoors Urban Entrepreneurs Series (MUES). The grand-prize winner is Ola Ayeni, CEO of Dining Dialog, which helps food and beverage companies grow their customer base. Ayeni received a $50,000 investment grant, while three runners-up each received $25,000 from the beer company.
The ultimate goal of the MUES program is to create a pipeline of potential MillerCoors suppliers. Supplier diversity, community investment and economic empowerment are priorities for MillerCoors. The brewer has set a target to cumulatively spend more than $2.5 billion with minority-owned and women-owned suppliers by 2015.
Love and Quiches Desserts
Foodservice bakery Love and Quiches Desserts is expanding its charitable giving program to include children's hunger and the Wounded Warriors program, administered by the R&DA Military Assistance Program Inc.
What started in 2009 as a local charitable program of donating birthday cakes to bring joy to underprivileged children has now become the umbrella term for Love and Quiches Desserts' national campaign against children's hunger. The company's Cakes for Kids program embraces not only their partnership with local charity Island Harvest to distribute free cakes monthly at key distribution points on Long Island, but now includes donating a portion of the company's profits to children's hunger charities.
The foodservice bakery's charitable involvement has also recently expanded to include fallen heroes of the U.S. Military. Love and Quiches Desserts will donate a portion of the company's profits to the Wounded Warriors program.