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:
Marathon Petroleum Corp.
One week after Hurricane Isaac made landfall along the Gulf Coast, Marathon Petroleum Corp. is donating $500,000 to the American Red Cross in Louisiana and $500,000 to designated local charities in the area near the company's operations that are providing support for the residents affected by the storm.
"We appreciate the dedication of individuals who stand ready to help those who have been impacted by the recent storm. As a part of the Louisiana community, we know that the recovery process will be long and the American Red Cross is there to provide the needed support to help families move forward," said MPC President and CEO Gary R. Heminger. "In addition to these donations, we continue to focus on providing assistance to our employees whose lives have been affected by this storm."
The Valero Volunteer Council presented a $30,000 check to the Food Bank of Corpus Christi (Texas). The money was collected through the refinery's fourth annual Reel It In for Kids fishing tournament.
All the money raised helps fund the Food Bank's Kids Café Backpack Program, a program which provides students with nutritious food to take home every Friday night. The money donated will support 200 needy kids from the Corpus Christi Independent School District's Gibson Elementary.
With the support of its suppliers and vendors, Roadrunner Markets raised $75,000 for Tennessee-area charities at the 16th annual Roadrunner Markets Benefit Golf Tournament held last month.
More than 160 players took part in the event, consisting of teams of four players each. The United Way of Washington County will receive $50,000 and will be used to help fund 17 local non-profit service agencies in the county. South Central Ruritan will receive $25,000 and the funds will be used to finish construction of ball fields at the South Central Ruritan Ball Park in Washington County.
Phillips 66 gasoline marketing group is donating $5,000 in gas cards to Ed's Posse, a group of motorcycle riders and enthusiasts founded by Ed Hale of Raymore, Mo., who are the leading fundraisers in the nation for the March of Dimes' Bikers for Babies events.
The gas cards will fuel Ed and his posse's 100-mile ride during the 2012 Kansas City Bikers for Babies charity event on Sunday, Sept. 16, at the Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan.
Aloha Petroleum, Ltd.
Aloha Petroleum Ltd. continues its support for local non-profits, donating $3,551.30 to Aloha Harvest for organization's efforts to provide food for those in need. Aloha Harvest is a non-profit organization that gathers quality, donated food and delivers it at no cost to social service agencies feeding the hungry in Hawaii.
Aloha Petroleum collected the money during June and July by setting up donation canisters at its Aloha Island Mart convenience stores on Oahu, Maui and the Big Island. Canisters were also set up at select Shell locations.
Dr Pepper is giving away more than $1 million in tuition money this football season as part of the annual Dr Pepper Tuition Giveaway. Fans are invited to submit 60-second videos online at DrPepper.com explaining why they deserve tuition money for a chance to compete to win various prize levels, including one of five $100,000 grand prizes.
Dr Pepper will award $2,500 instant tuition prizes through the end of the year. In addition, a select group of Dr Pepper fans will have the chance to win one of the $100,000 tuition grand prizes being awarded at five signature college football events this year. Selected contest finalists will throw footballs from the five-yard line into a two-foot hole in an oversized Dr Pepper can replica. The Dr Pepper fan at each game who successfully completes the most throws in 30 seconds will win a grand prize, with the runner-up taking home a $23,000 tuition prize. Three additional contestants invited to each game who do not advance past a preliminary throw will receive $2,500.
The Dr Pepper Tuition Giveaway judges entry videos based on specific criteria, such as the inclusion of Dr Pepper, a description of how the tuition money and a college education will help the student make an impact in the world, and overall presentation quality. Fans 18 to 24 years old can upload their videos to DrPepper.com by Nov. 15 for a chance to compete for $100,000 during a select conference championship game. Consumers 18 years of age and over can submit their videos until Dec. 31 for a chance to win a $2,500 tuition prize.
In addition to the video submissions, fans can win tuition money all season long through Dr Pepper Tuition Giveaway retail promotions.
VPS Convenience Store Group
VPS Convenience Store Group raised $196,526 for the Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation this year to support pediatric cancer research at ranked children's cancer hospitals in each of the eight states where stores are located. All 425 locations under the VPS umbrella conducted an in-store "icon" campaign and VPS also raised funds through a vendor-supported bowl-a-thon event in Indianapolis.
Jeff Gordon lent his celebrity status to the VPS chain-wide campaign by producing radio spots for each name brand, and by personally tweeting and posting status updates on his Facebook page throughout the campaign. Pepsi Max (JG car sponsor) supported the VPS campaign by tagging local radio spots in select markets with the JG PSA and by funding a $1 off coupon with each icon sold in VPS stores.
In the 11-year history working with Jeff Gordon, VPS has raised nearly $2.2 million for childhood cancer research and treatment.