Giving back to the community with the help of generous customers goes a long way to help fight hunger, and the Porter’s family of grocery stores is there to pitch in with the Round Up for Hunger program.
The idea came from Judd Porter, one of three owners of the family-owned grocery chain, and the Round Up for Hunger program was launched Jan. 1. A similar program called Orphan Outreach emerged last year, and was designed to help at-risk and orphan children around the world. This year, the Porters decided to go local, and contribute to the food pantries located in each Porter’s location. The Round Up for Orphans program successfully raised around $143,000, among the Porter’s stores.
Porter’s Public Relations and Marketing Director Ky Ellison said, “For this year, 11 of our stores have raised just over $29,000 through the Round up for Hunger program. In Alpine, customers have donated $4,143 so far in two short months.”
Upon checkout, customers simply round up, or donate their preferred amount from their purchases. At the end of the month, Porter’s sends a check to the local food pantry, and pocket change can go a long way.
“For some people, its five cents, for other people its 80 cents. It’s pocket change, pennies that end up making a huge impact for these people,” said Ellison.
The program will continue until the end of the year, and is already receiving positive feedback from the community.
“We have very generous customers that shop with us. I have not met anybody who felt negative. Most of them are just excited to be able to round up their purchase,” said Ellison.
Providing open and accessible information is also important for Porter’s, and customers can track down the amounts that have been raised every month online.
Ellison explained, “We are very transparent about it, and want people to understand that we know they are trusting us with their money. We want it to go straight to helping those people in the food pantries, so they can use it to do the best good that they can.”
Ellison, an Andrews resident who loves the Big Bend area, has been a loyal Porter’s employee for 12 years now, and is proud of the good works the grocery chain has done to help those in need.
“The Porter family is a Christian family that is very involved in the communities. They have been based in Andrews since 1945, and giving back to the community that we are a part of is just as much in the fabric of who we are as selling groceries to people,” said Ellison. “It’s a wonderful thing that we can be the conduit to help people be involved and help those less fortunate.”