To support local teachers, local owner-operators of McDonald’s launched a new fundraiser, Fries for School Supplies. From August 17 through August 23, McDonald’s restaurants across the KC metro area donated 10 percent of their a la carte fry sales to local school districts.
Local owner-operators of McDonald’s Great Plains Co-Op organized the fundraiser in order to support local school districts. As the COVID-19 crisis continues to be ever-changing, many of the owner-operators wanted to give back to the communities that they serve. Proceeds from the a la carte fry sales will go to help schools that may need extra assistance with affording the cost of the supplies that are needed to navigate the school year.
Anne Alon and her husband are local owner-operators at a McDonald’s in the Olathe area. When the COVID-19 pandemic first broke out, healthcare workers and first responders were working intensely to help those who were infected. In late April, McDonald’s celebrated those who were risking their lives daily with a free meal. Alon and her husband took part in that in addition to helping their local hospitals.
“Since March we’ve been thinking of ways that we can support the community,” Alon said. “We did a lot of things with hospitals and frontline workers with our thank you meals. My husband and I [helped] a lot with local hospitals personally by giving free meals to workers.”
During the summer, the Great Plains Co-Op wanted to think of more ways to support the community. With the school year approaching and looking completely different than ever before, the co-op decided that they should give back to their local school districts.
“Schools are under a lot of stress this fall, they’re always under budget constraints, but even more so with this year,” Alon said. “They need a lot more additional supplies than they’ve ever [needed] in recent years. Maybe they need thermometers to do temperature checks and having to provide PPE (personal protection equipment), sanitizer and more supplies than ever before. So, we wanted to do what we could to help support our local schools and teachers and just try to support the community.”
McDonald’s is no stranger to helping schools. With numerous teachers’ nights, the Ronald McDonald House Charities and more it was obvious that donating money for supplies was the right decision.
“Working with schools is something we’ve always been involved with,” Alon said. “We have our teacher nights and things we do with our communities. This is just another way to help out; especially with everything that’s going on, we’re really looking for ways to help our schools. Our restaurant covers six school districts so we’re really proud of that.”
Alon’s establishment covers around six different school districts. All of them are public institutions that go from K-12. This includes the Shawnee Mission, Olathe, Blue Valley, Hiawatha, Kansas City Kansas and Missouri school districts.
Once the fundraiser concluded, a check was given to each of the school districts who are then responsible for choosing what supplies they need most.
“I think customers are always wanting to support their local schools, but especially this year’s back-to-school people are more aware of the stress that schools and teachers are under,” Alon said. “Often, customers like doing things that they know [benefit] their local community so I think the response has been very positive.”
While there are no official plans for prospective fundraisers, Alon believes that there may be more ways to support her community in the upcoming months.
“I think all of us play a role in supporting one another,” Alon said. “It takes all of us to make this community what it is. That’s how my husband and I feel; anything that we can do to give back to the community, we do. I think that’s part of being a business owner in a community and even being a citizen. We just feel like that’s a part of our responsibility as business owners in the community.”
By Alieu Jagne