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Restaurants Getting Ready for the Dine-Out No Kid Hungry Fundraising Campaign This September

Restaurateurs just ought to be proud of themselves—not only are they providing jobs to the American public (remember our article America Works Here?), they are very active with altruistic causes, too.

Nation’s Restaurant News reported last month that there was a total of 5,560 restaurants who partnered with the U.S. national non-profit organization Share Our Strength in helping raise funds towards the No Kid Hungry campaign, a project whose aim is to abate childhood hunger in the country. Together they were able to gather a total of more than $2.2 million in funds.

Now, many restaurants are once again gearing up to redo what they did, hoping to exceed last year’s figures through another one of the organization’s projects, the Dine Out–No Kid Hungry campaign, in time for its 5th anniversary this coming September 16 to 22, 2012.

Numerous multi-unit restaurant chains and independent operators joined Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign last year, where they utilized different ways to support the project – menu promotions of new specialties done by their chefs in cool chef apron, bounce-back coupons, guest donations, social media, matching funds, merchandise sales, and employee contests. Independent operators, franchisees, employees and customers alike were one in the cause: ensuring that every child in the U.S. would have the food that they need to succeed in life. No Kid Hungry’s goal is to put an end to childhood hunger in America by 2015.

Casual dining restaurant chain Baker’s Restaurant, for instance, opened their place during one of their closed days, Tuesdays, and donated all of the day’s sales to the fundraising campaign. Fast food chain Arby’s donated $1 to the campaign every time a diner checked-in at social networking site Foursquare. They also provided coupons to their guests and encouraged customer pledges and contributions both in their restaurants and in their social media accounts.

The money that was raised enabled Share Our Strength to reach out to hungry children in 18 states, as well as build city partnerships and community organizations in all of America’s 50 states. They came up with various projects that provided food for the children, such as the nearly 1 million summer meals that restaurant chefs in smart-looking chef aprons prepared and distributed in 6 states last year.

Besides that, participating restaurants claim that the program was able to help them in more ways than one, too—other than boosting the restaurant’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) image and livening up restaurant marketing, joining the campaign also benefited them through increased customer traffic, higher sales and improved employee morale.