OAK BROOK, Ill. -- Although the convenience/gasoline retailing industry has come a long way from the days of the "service station," in one way, the industry's retailers still function as "service" stations. They--along with their supplier partners--keep a steady stream of philanthropic endeavors and support flowing into the communities they serve.
Some of the most recent examples include:
For the past four years, 7-Eleven franchisee Richard Santonocito has been raising money for Camp Pa-Qua-Tuck, Center Moriches, N.Y., which has programs for special-needs children and young adults who attend the camp in New York state during the summer and its respite weekends from September through June. He has done so by placing a coin jar in front of the cash register at two of his 7-Eleven franchises, one in Center Moriches, N.Y., and the other in Westhampton Beach, N.Y.
Richard Santonocito, Suzanne SantonocitoSince he began this program, more than $16,000 has been raised for the camp. In addition to collecting money for the camp, he and the 7-Eleven employees, including his daughter Suzanne, have come down to the camp and served BBQ lunches and dinners for the campers.
BP station owners of New York and New Jersey presented a "BP Fueling Communities" grant donation of $55,500 to four local Police Athletic League (PAL) chapters. The PAL chapters serve more than 45,000 local youth and will use the grant donation to help fund athletic facilities and sports programs.
The donation was made possible by the support of 185 local BP station owners. The funding will be divided equally among the Nassau County, Suffolk County, New York City and Jersey City PAL chapters.
Speedway LLC, Enon, Ohio, Louisville, Ky., pledged to raise $1 million over the next three years to be donated to the Children's Hospital Foundation for the purchase of two new "Just for Kids" transport vehicles for the pediatric transport team at Kosair Children's Hospital, Louisville, Ky., and to support the development of the new dedicated pediatric emergency department at the future Kosair Children's Hospital--St. Matthews.
The $1 million fundraising effort comes from Speedway's partnership with the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and donations of its customers who place money in jars located in Speedway stores throughout the Louisville area. The additional $1 million over the next three years follows a $500,000 Speedway donation in 2011 to the Children's Hospital Foundation to purchase a new transport ambulance.
Oklahoma City-based 7-Eleven Stores contributed $1 million to the YWCA Oklahoma City capital campaign to build a new shelter for battered women and children, remodel the existing shelter and remodel the YWCA Oklahoma City McFarland Branch. The funds raised from the three-year campaign will build an 85-bed shelter, nearly doubling the size of the current shelter.
"Our current shelter stays full 99.9% of the time," said Janet L. Peery, CEO of the YWCA Oklahoma City. "This capital campaign is critical for us to give these victims a safe haven and help them build a life free of violence."
The Love's Travel Stop's "Learning with Love's Scholarship Fund" awarded $40,000 in scholarships to employees and dependents for the 2012-2013 academic year. The company established the fund to support a cause important to the Love family: education. The program is administered by the Oklahoma City Community Foundation, which includes the final selection of recipients and disbursement of funds provided by the Love Family Affiliated Fund.
Established in 1999 through the contribution of property, the Love Family Affiliated Fund provides a way for the Love family to make charitable gifts to the causes they care about.
"It's important that we help support Love's employees through the Learning with Love's Scholarship as they pursue their education," said Tom Love, founder and CEO of Love's Travel Stops, Oklahoma City.
C-store distributor McLane Co. Inc., Temple, Texas, has joined c-store chain The Pantry Inc., Cary, N.C., for the second annual "Salute Our Troops" campaign, inviting customers in its more than 1,600 Kangaroo Express convenience stores across 13 states to demonstrate united support for military personnel and their families.
McLane and Kangaroo Express, along with presenting sponsor PepsiCo, Purchase, N.Y., will encourage customers to make monetary donations at Kangaroo Express through Sept. 4, 2012. Donations from the campaign will benefit numerous military support organizations.
Baltimoreprofessional football player Sam Koch and Jiffy Mart, Westminster, Md., partnered to help Carroll County Food Sunday, also located in Westminster, at an event this past July. The charity helps more than 600 families in need within the county. It provides milk vouchers for families and more than 60% of these vouchers are redeemed at Jiffy Mart locations, officials said.
"The cost of a gallon of milk is around $4," said Tom Moster, general manager of Jiffy Mart. "Sam's number is 4, so we decided anyone coming in on that evening and sponsoring a milk voucher could then have an item signed by Sam."
Irving Oil, Portsmouth, N.H., recently held its biggest fundraiser in New England, which involves the Special Olympics. Irving's partnership with Special Olympics began 13 years ago in New Hampshire and has benefited the "Law Enforcement Torch Run," the largest fundraiser worldwide for the Special Olympics. Since then, the event has expanded across all six New England states and has raised more than $2 million.
"Working alongside so many passionate and talented athletes is very rewarding," said Harry Hadiaris, general manager of Irving Oil. "We love the opportunity to support Special Olympics and law enforcement officers across all of New England."
Last month, various Irving and Circle K locations hosted the "To Serve and Protect Day," where Special Olympics athletes, coaches and law enforcement officers worked alongside Irving and Circle K employees to pump gas, wash windshields and greet customers at local Irving stations, travel plazas and Circle K locations throughout New England.
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