WAWA, Pa. — Wawa Inc. will celebrate its anniversary by honoring essential workers and everyday heroes.
On April 16 — the date the first Wawa store opened in Delaware County in 1964 and the date marking the launch of The Wawa Foundation six years ago — the convenience retailer is dedicating the day of its founding to these individuals by giving them recognition and resources.
"As an essential business, we remain open to help everyday heroes working hard to mitigate the impact COVID-19 has on our community," said Wawa President and CEO Chris Gheysens. "We are in awe of their strength and resiliency, and will fulfill our promise of standing by their side."
Wawa posted a public acknowledgment to thank first responders, healthcare workers, teachers, parents and even Wawa employees on its YouTube channel. The video highlights the helpers who have risen to the occasion and serve and support others in this time of need and serves as a tribute to the community's strength and an uplifting message for all, according to the company.
The retailer will also continue its commitment to supporting everyday heroes with a record-breaking donation of 3,000 meals in one week to organizations in each of its service areas. This includes:
- Einstein Healthcare Network in Pennsylvania
- Robert Wood Johnson Hospital in New Jersey
- Beebe Healthcare in Delaware
- Johns Hopkins Healthcare in Maryland
- Virginia Commonwealth University Health System in Virginia
- Northshore Medical Center in Florida
- Georgetown MedStar University Hospital in Washington, D.C.
The Wawa Foundation is also providing an additional $250,000 for eligible nonprofits and local food banks that can apply for support of hunger relief efforts in the company's serving territory. Interested organizations can apply at www.thewawafoundation.org by clicking "Apply for Support" on the homepage, then "Begin the Submission Process" and selecting "Financial Support."
The Wawa Foundation team will review requests quickly with approvals being communicated either through a call or via email. Submitting an application does not guarantee funding.
Based in Pennsylvania, Wawa operates more than more than 870 c-stores, with 600-plus offering fuel, in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Florida and Washington, D.C.