Giving back is an essential aspect of strong communities, and something that’s reflected in the volunteerism of local businesses. Throughout the year, employees of Grand Ridge Plaza businesses donate goods and services, host fundraisers and collect donations to support more than 100 local, regional and national charities. One merchant is even the top fundraiser among their stores nationwide. This spirit of giving reflects the values of the businesses as much as it does the generosity of the community. Here are highlights of nonprofit organizations that benefited in 2016.
American Cancer Society: Each year, more than 4 million people in 20 countries take part in the American Cancer Association’s Relay For Life to raise funds and awareness to save lives from cancer. This year, Ben & Jerry’s designated Relay For Life as the beneficiary of its Free Cone Day event. The team scooped 4,165 cups/cones and raised $1,600 in donations for Relay for Life. Across the street at The RAM Restaurant & Brewery, the team raised funds during Breast Cancer Awareness month by featuring pink drink specials, with $1 from each purchase donated to the cause.
Issaquah Schools Foundation: Did you know that Optica Vision Care donates a portion of its annual proceeds to help local students? Dr. Sam Ahn makes a commitment to support the Foundation as part of his practice. Many Grand Ridge Plaza restaurants are also active fundraisers for the Foundation, regularly hosting Dine For Kids events. At Dine For Kids, each restaurant donates a portion of the day’s proceeds to the Foundation. This year’s donors include Agave Cocina & Tequilas, MOD Pizza, Bai Tong Thai, Big Fish Grill and Chinoise Sushi Bar & Asian Grill. In addition, PinkaBella Cupcakes sponsored the 2016 Issaquah Schools Foundation – Nourish Every Mind luncheon.
Olive Crest: Dedicated to preventing child abuse, treating and educating at-risk children, Olive Crest helps thousands of families in the Pacific Northwest each year. At their recent fundraising gala, PinkaBella Cupcakes Founder Margo Engberg donated 46 cakes to the Dessert Dash. The cakes generated an amazing $16,000 in donations.
Eastside Baby Corner: Did you know that Eastside Baby Corner distributes thousands of diapers each week? Diapers are desperately needed by many families throughout the area. This year, both Carter’s and the Issaquah Highlands Community Association (IHCA) hosted diaper collection drive, while La Boutique Jolie hosted a Shop for the Cause event with a portion of proceeds donated to EBC.
Seattle Children’s Hospital: One of the world’s leading pediatric hospital centers, Children’s has more than 11,000 admissions each year. Many local businesses support Children’s, including Big Fish Grill, which hosts an annual Santa Brunch that raises funds for the hospital. PinkaBella Cupcakes also supports Children’s, sponsoring the American Girl Doll fashion Show with Star Guild to raise money for uncompensated care.
Dental Care for Neighbors In Need: Each year, Issaquah Highlands Dental Group helps local residents in need at their Serve Day. The team, including four dentists, provides free dental care 20 community members. These patients, who would not otherwise have access to dental care, receive everything from cleanings, exams and digital X-rays to extractions, implants and restorations. The dental office teams up with local organizations and community partners, such as youth centers, nonprofit organizations and churches, to identify individuals that are in need of basic dental care.
ALS Therapy Development Institute: The world’s leading ALS research organization, the Institute aims to discover and develop effective treatments and a cure for ALS. This summer, The RAM Restaurant & Brewery raised more than $10,000 across all restaurants for ALS research. For each pint purchased of their IPA For ALS small-batch beer, they donated $1 to ALS research.
Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation: Did you know that Marshalls raises more than $3 million each year for Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation through their paper sneaker sale campaign? Donations received at stores help to fund life-changing treatments and research to find a cure for type 1 diabetes.
Issaquah Food & Clothing Bank: The Food Bank, which provides support to hundreds of families in-need, also offers case management, holiday gift programs, school supplies, and toiletries. This year, MOD Pizza continued its tradition of raising funds for the Food Bank by donating $1 from every pizza sold during a fundraising drive. Many other businesses also lent their support to the Food Bank this year, including HomeStreet Bank, which hosted and contributed to a food drive.
Breast Cancer Research Foundation: Each year, Ulta Beauty supports the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and its mission to prevent and cure breast cancer by advancing the world’s most promising research. In October, Ulta hosted its annual Cut-for-a-Cause event offering $10 haircuts in the Ulta Salon – and donating 100 percent of funds raised to the Foundation.
Snoqualmie Valley Food Bank: In 2015, 1,044 different households relied on the assistance of the Food Bank, which distributed 669,849 pounds of food. They expect those numbers to increase significantly this year. One of its significant supporters is Issaquah Highlands Safeway, which donates thousands of pounds of food each year.
Art Institute of Seattle: The Institute, which offers programs in design, fashion, media arts, and culinary fields, presents an annual fashion show to showcase the work of its students and offer them real-life experience. Each year, Sorella Salon & Spa donates professional styling services to the show. Sorella stylists manage the models and help the students complete their final looks to put on an amazing show.READ MORE