Los Angeles, California-based Smart & Final, the grocery warehouse store for household and business customers, has launched its annual in-store donation program aimed to raise money and collect pasta-related items for the ninth annual PastaThon, a fundraising event organized by KFI AM640 for Caterina’s Club. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit, Caterina’s Club provides meals, affordable housing assistance and hospitality job training for homeless youth and low-income families throughout Southern California.
To participate in the food fundraiser, shoppers at any Smart & Final or Smart & Final Extra! store can make a donation at the register during checkout. Through Dec. 6, for every $10 donated, Smart & Final and Barilla will provide pasta, pasta sauce, forks, bowls and napkins to Caterina’s Club. Each $10 donation will provide 24 meals to kids in need.
In California, an estimated one in five children go to bed hungry each night. Having served more than three million meals to date, Caterina’s Club founder and the owner of the Anaheim White House restaurant, Chef Bruno Serato said, “It’s time to stop talking about it; it’s time to do something about it.”
Customers donating $10 will receive a code on their receipt to enter for a chance to win a 13-day, exclusive trip for two to Italy, courtesy of Trafalgar, a guided vacation company.
Smart & Final and the Smart & Final Charitable Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the company, also will donate pallets of food and provide volunteer staff at the PastaThon fundraising event hosted by KFI AM640, happening on Dec. 6 at Christ Cathedral in Garden Grove, California. In 2018, the total raised from Smart & Final and its customers was $62,000, which was turned into 72,000 pounds of pasta and sauce, plus $17,000 in cash donations.
“Caterina’s Club and Chef Bruno Serato inspire the Smart & Final family to give our time, money and hearts to such a worthy cause every year,” said Deb Bell-Versluis, director of corporate communications for Smart & Final. “In the spirit of ‘food is love,’ we’re honored to have the opportunity to turn monetary donations into the ingredients Caterina’s Club uses to feed 25,000 kids a week in 30 cities.”
Throughout the year, the Smart & Final Charitable Foundation is committed to improving the quality of life and nourishing the communities Smart & Final stores serve. The foundation aids nonprofit organizations that impact issues including hunger relief, health and wellness, education, youth development and sports and disaster relief. Last year, the Charitable Foundation hit a fundraising milestone, raising $2 million for more than 2,300 causes with the help of Smart & Final customers and store associates.