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A GIANT Impact

A GIANT Impact

Rooted in a longstanding belief that it’s important to make a difference where you operate, The GIANT Com­pany, based in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, has been giving back locally since the company’s founding as a butcher shop in the 1920s. Now 187 stores strong, The GIANT Company has supported Johns Hopkins Children’s Center through its partnership with Children’s Miracle Net­work (CMN) Hospitals for more than 20 years. Each year, the company hosts the largest golf tournament on the East Coast, spanning 13 golf courses and more than 2,000 participants. The event supports eight CMN hospitals, including Johns Hopkins Children’s Center. From June 1 through Aug. 31, the organization also holds its “Round Up” campaign, during which customers are asked to round up their total to the nearest dollar at check­out. At stores in Maryland, 100% of the donations stay local to help patients and families at the Children’s Center.

In March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic swept America, essential work­ers — like those at The GIANT Com­pany — were on the front lines. At a time when panic-buying was rampant, shelves were empty and lines were long, leader­ship at the company was keenly aware of how the pandemic was impacting not only themselves, but others as well.

“When we saw the work that was being done by our health care partners and the pictures of overcrowding of hospitals, am­bulances, the stress and long hours, the shortage of PPE, we knew that we needed to step up,” says Jessica Groves, social impact manager for The GIANT Com­pany. “We felt it was important that they knew that we were there for them. We were in the enviable position to be able to help, and we knew we needed to act fast.”

In late March, Cynthia Palacz, senior associate director of development, re­ceived an unexpected phone call: The GIANT Company wanted to donate $50,000 to support COVID-19 efforts at Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.

“In a time when the world stopped and we were all in crisis, we weren’t sure how we were going to raise money for our kids, whose needs didn’t stop — and in some cases, increased — in the middle of a global pandemic. Getting that call was a ray of sunshine in the middle of a storm,” Palacz says. “We are so grateful for amaz­ing partners like The GIANT Company who were thinking of our care providers, kids and families when they themselves were also on the front lines.”

Pivoting in this time of crisis, The GIANT Company remained commit­ted to its annual fundraising efforts, implementing a contactless version of its Round Up campaign in support of CMN Hospitals. Despite the challenges faced throughout 2020, The GIANT Company surpassed its fundraising goal, raising nearly $40,000 for the Children’s Center –– a 19% increase from 2019.

“Our team members love supporting the Children’s Center. After more than 20 years, it’s ingrained in who we are. Our team knows that they’re part of a company culture that isn’t just selling groceries. They’re connecting families for a better future,” says Groves. “The GIANT Company is dedicated to chang­ing children’s lives, and we’re honored to be able to raise funds and get them to or­ganizations like Johns Hopkins who can make a difference in the lives of kids.”

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