Tag Archives: childhood hunger

The 2012 Dine Out for No Kid Hungry Event Success

During the month of September, restaurants across the country, both large and small, participated in Share Our Strength’s Dine Out for No Kid Hungry. This annual event enables restaurants and their customers to work together and raise money for the No Kid Hungry campaign, which has a goal to end childhood hunger.

The No Kid Hungry campaign connects needy children to effective nutrition programs such as School Breakfast or Summer Food Service.  The campaign also teaches families healthy cooking methods and how to obtain affordable meals through the Cooking Matters program.

Each year, donations toward the No Kid Hungry campaign from the Dine Out for No Kid Hungry event continue to rise.  Restaurants helped raise $1.5 million in 2010, and $2.4 million in 2011.  So how did 2012 do?

“This year our goal was $5 million and we definitely surpassed that, and it looks like by a lot,” Jessie Sherrer, senior manager at Share Our Strength, said.

There were 8,283 participating restaurants this year compared to 5,611 last year.

Each year there is a designated week in September for Dine Out for No Kid Hungry, however Share Our Strength is open to and encourages restaurants to extend the campaign as long as they like during the month.

“We saw many different types of promotions, but the biggest difference is that we had restaurants that participated for longer than just the official week this year,” Sherrer said.  “Many participated for the full month of September, some for three weeks and some for two.  Denny’s actually extended their promotion at the last minute and participated for two months!”

Promotions restaurants ran this year included bounce-back coupons (customers are given an incentive to return upon making a donation)  and multi-tiered promotions (the larger the donation, the larger value there would be on a coupon).

Sherrer added restaurants were creative with non-traditional types of promotions, especially using Facebook and Twitter.  It’s all up to the restaurant and what they would like to do.

What’s so great and convenient for restaurants that participate in Dine Out for No Kid Hungry is Share Our Strength does all of the work.

“We do create tools to make participation easier: standard and customizable coupons, posters, menu cards, etc.,” Sherrer said.  “The restaurants are welcome to use them or create their own in-store POP.  We also create customizable pre-event and post-event press releases, employee training guides, talking points, etc.  We try to make the program as turn-key as possible so that the restaurants don’t have to do all of the heavy lifting.”

As an added bonus this year, independent operators (five restaurants or less), received a complimentary in-store marketing kit with two front-of-the-house posters, two back-of-the-house posters, 50 check stuffers, 50 sticks and a window decal.  Sherrer noticed this added bonus had to have paid off as there were many impressive donations from this sector–higher than in previous years.

Also, restaurants that participated in the event were given exposure on Dine Out for No Kid Hungry’s interactive search map.  This is very beneficial for restaurants because Share Our Strength makes September “No Kid Hungry” month and has a call to action for those involved with the event to search for participating restaurants and dine at them.

“Restaurants that commit to certain fundraising goals, get extra benefits such as logo placement on the restaurant registration page, interactive map page and partner page,” Sherrer said.  “We also conducted a Radio Media Tour in major markets.  Executives from the featured restaurant companies were able to be interviewed by radio stations to promote their participation and talk about why participating in Dine Out For No Kid Hungry was important to them, their employees, the communities they serve and the country overall.”

So what’s on the agenda for 2013?

“We have lofty financial goals for next year and hope to raise between $8 million and $10 million,” Sherrer said.  “We haven’t yet set a final goal for participating restaurants, but will likely need about 20,000 to hit that number!”

If your restaurant is interested in participating in Dine Out for No Kid Hungry 2013, registration has already begun. You can also make a donation to the No Kid Hungry campaign to help curb childhood hunger.

Dine Out for No Kid Hungry Success!

Last week, September 18-24, was Share Our Strength’s annual event, Dine Out for No Kid Hungry™ (formally known as the Great American Dine Out).  This national campaign for No Kid Hungry allows restaurants and customers to join together to help combat childhood hunger in America, which Share Our Strength is committed to end.

This year’s event was extremely successful.  There were over 5500 restaurants in attendance (which is up over 100 restaurants from last year), many of which in some way extended their campaign anywhere from a week to even the entire month of September.

To raise money, each participating restaurant has a promotion for their customers.  Each customer that donates to the cause then takes advantage of the promotion—which ranges from free items to bounce-back coupons.

Last year Share Our Strength raised $1.5 million and this year’s goal was $2.5 million.  While official numbers won’t roll out until mid to late November, Share Our Strength Senior Manager, Jessie Sherrer, keeps getting updates and it looks like they may have even exceeded the goal (but nothing will be official until final numbers are released).

“We had great companies this year, especially with some of the bigger restaurants such as Joe’s Crab Shack, Corner Bakery, Monical’s Pizza, Denny’s, etc.,” Sherrer said. “And it was Pita Pit’s first year and they just blew out of the water.”

This was Central customer Monical’s Pizza’s second time participating in Dine Out for No Kid Hungry ™.  They opened in 1959 by the Monical family in Tolono, Ill., and today have at least 66 restaurants in Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin.

“Our 2011 event was made up of Monical’s Pizza donating $1 from every 16” thin crust one or more topping Family Pleaser® (pizza, salad and soft drink) sold in our participating locations,” said Lisa Chidichimo, Marketing Technology Coordinator for Monical’s. “In order to benefit the Share Our Strength funds, we also offered a 20 percent discount on this meal combination.”

While Monical’s mostly participates in local programs and assisting the communities they serve, Chidichimo said this national program fit into their values.

“Their program is taking on childhood hunger through what they call a state strategy; launching state-and city campaigns across the U.S. Each campaign is dedicated to its specific geographic area and works by building private-public partnerships with local anti-hunger groups, government agencies, corporate partners and key political, education and business leaders,” she explained. “These partnerships focus on increasing participation in federal nutrition programs, in turn, unleashes millions of federal dollars to connect kids who are at risk of hunger to the food they need to succeed.”

Chidichimo also added the impact of this year’s campaign was better than their last—and it’s always a learning process. The support and promotion materials provided by Share Our Strength was very helpful to them.

While the total amount of Monical’s donations is still being calculated, Chidichimo says it seems as though they will contribute upwards of $7000. (Again, all numbers for both the Dine Out and Monical’s are tentative).

All restaurant participation for the No Kid Hungry campaign truly assists the over 17 million children in America that struggle with hunger. Their website points out this is nearly one out of four children.  They also add these children have trouble learning, are sick more often and aren’t able to develop as quickly or as soundly as other children.

To learn more about No Kid Hungry, visit the Dine Out website or read their blog. They are on Facebook and Twitter too.  There are events throughout the year and you can also make a donation to the cause at any time.  So if you missed out on the event this year but would like to become more involved in the organization, there are many ways on their website for you to do so.

Central will continue to follow the progress of Dine Out for No Kid Hungry™ and will pass along the announcement of this year’s total number once the information becomes available.  Also, check out our July blog about the event to see how successful Share Our Strength was over what their original plans were!

If you were a participating restaurant or customer, we’d love to hear your experience with this year’s Dine Out for No Kid Hungry!

Eat Out and Pitch In With the Great American Dine Out

One in four children in America face hunger. Not the type of hunger you feel when you skipped breakfast and didn’t have time for lunch, but the kind of hunger that comes when you don’t know when your next meal will come.

This kind of hunger has lifelong consequences including, weaker immune systems, ear infections, behavioral difficulties, impaired performance in school, more hospitalizations and among others.

YOU can help!

The third annual Great American Dine-Out is September 19-25, will you be involved?

Some of you may be asking; What is the Great American Dine-Out? Here is your answer.

The Great American Dine-Out is a one week event across the country in which restaurants donate funds to the Great American Dine-Out. The funds are then granted to “anti-hunger organizations that demonstrate effective work to help end childhood hunger.”

Here are a few things this money goes towards to help end childhood hunger in America by 2015.

  • Enroll more eligible kids in school breakfast, after-school snacks and meals and their families in SNAP
  • Bring community gardens and farmers markets to low-income neighborhoods
  • Teach at-risk families how to plan, shop for, and prepare healthy, low-cost meals at home
  • Increase awareness and understanding of childhood hunger and solutions to it

These are just a few of the things being done with the money raised by this event. Last year in Maryland, participation in school breakfast was increased by 7% and over 20% of eligible sites began participating in Afterschool Suppers.

These things are made possible thanks to restaurants such as

Buffalo Wild Wings

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Joes Crab Shackhttp://blog.centralrestaurant.com/wp-content/uploads/rule.gif

Corner Bakery Cafe

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McAlister’s Deli

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People are making a difference, will you be involved?

For more information on becoming a participating restaurant, donating, or learning more about childhood hunger in America visit here.