Community Service Roundup: Initiatives by 8 Retailers (July 2017)

Kristina Peters, Associate Editor, CSP

CHICAGO -- This community-service roundup features eight convenience-store retailers and one gas-savings app giving back to their communities by supporting local schools and students, as well as national organizations. 

Click through to read about these efforts ... 

Aloha Petroleum

Gabriella Pua‘a

Aloha Petroleum, Honolulu, raised more than $5,400 for USO Hawaii, a private organization dedicated to serving service members and their families through several program outreaches and two center operations on Oahu. In recognition of Military Appreciation Month, Aloha Petroleum donated a percentage of all fountain drinks sold at Aloha Island Marts in May to USO Hawaii.

An Aloha Petroleum family member was also recently awarded a $4,000 scholarship from the Western Petroleum Marketers Association. Recipient Punahou Senior Gabriella Pua‘a (pictured) is the daughter of Ricky Pua‘a, terminal operator for Aloha Petroleum. She will attend Iowa Western Community College in the fall. 

Kum & Go

Kum & Go Earlham, Iowa

Kum & Go CEO Kyle Krause’s wife, Sharon, is leading a restoration project in Earlham, Iowa. The Bricker-Price Block building, which will host a restaurant and social club and teen center, is undergoing a $2.1 million historic restoration.

“Greater Des Moines is nationally recognized as a great place to live and work, and Earlham, just a few miles from the heart of the city, is feeling the same energy and civic pride that led to Des Moines’ growth,” said Sharon Krause. “The Bricker-Price Block project complements others that are being done to revitalize Earlham. I believe it will also spur future economic development.”

Kum & Go is based in West Des Moines. 

Love’s Travel Stops

Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores

Oklahoma City-based Love’s Travel Stops awarded 78 drivers of its fuel hauling fleet (Gemini Motor Transport) for safe driving. If a driver remains accident-free for five years, they receive a bonus. This year, Gemini awarded $1.8 million in bonuses.

MFA Oil Co.

MFA Oil Co.

Columbia, Mo.-based MFA Oil Co. donated $160,000 to Operation Homefront, a national nonprofit organization that provides emergency and other financial assistance to the families of U.S. military service members and veterans. The company presented a check to representatives from Operation Homefront during its Third Annual Charity Golf Scramble & Concert, which was held June 5 at The Club at Old Hawthorne in Columbia. The money donated by MFA Oil will go to active-duty military and veteran families in Missouri and Kansas, as well as other areas where the needs are great.                              



Savannah, Ga.-based Parker’s donated $1,500 to the Wayne County School System as part of its Fueling the Community program. Parker’s donates a portion of every gallon of gas sold on the first Wednesday of each month to area schools.

The chain also recently awarded scholarships to six high school students. Since January, Parker’s has honored one outstanding student each month in Georgia or South Carolina for excellence in the classroom, in the community and in sports. Madeline Prince of Hilton Head Island High School was awarded $1,000, and Collins Sherrill of Benedictine Military School, Brianna Hayes of Appling County High School, Mac Orie of Hilton Head Preparatory School, Haley Fowler of Effingham County High School and Alex LeFavi of South Effingham High School each received $500 scholarships.



QuickChek team member Dana Schmeltzle received a $5,000 scholarship from the New Jersey Food Council (NJFC). The Student Award is given to a graduating high school student or college student who is a family member of a full-time employee, NJFC employee or part-time student employee. Schmeltzle works part time in the pharmacy department of QuickChek’s store in Washington, N.J., and is a sophomore at North Carolina State University.

Part-time QuickChek employee Yasmine Elasmar (pictured) received the QuickChek Corporation Scholarship. The $2,000 award is given to an employee or family member employed at the chain. Elasmar will attend New York University; he works at a QuickChek in Piscataway, N.J. 



Ricker’s Convenience Stores has planted 11,017 trees in Indiana since the May 2016 launch of Ricker’s Replenish, a program that reduces its customers’ tailpipe emissions. Every time a customer pumps any grade of fuel at Ricker’s, the Replenish program calculates their vehicle’s tailpipe emissions and invests in forestry, tree planting, alternative energy and other projects that remove carbon from the atmosphere. The Anderson, Ind.-based chain celebrated the milestone recently while dedicating 44 trees on the Indiana Statehouse lawn.  


Sheetz for the Kidz

Throughout July, Altoona, Pa.-based Sheetz is holding in-store campaigns to support Sheetz for the Kidz, an employee-driven charitable organization that raises funds for the Sheetz for the Kidz Holiday Program and Make-A-Wish. Customers can donate at checkout. If they purchase a Sheetz for the Kidz water, 25 cents from each purchase will go toward the charity; if they buy any 20-ounce Coca-Cola beverage, Coca-Cola will donate 5 cents. They can also shop on Amazon Smile and select “Sheetz for the Kidz,” and Amazon will donate 0.5% of the purchase. They also can donate at

A main fundraising event for the organization continues to be the annual Sheetz for the Kidz Golf Classic, which raised more than $700,000 this year. 

Upside Services

Upside Services

Upside, a Washington, D.C.-based technology company with an app that offers specialized discounts on fuel and other purchases, launched GasForGood, which allows users to donate their gas savings to a local charity of their choice. Also, Nonprofits that join GasForGood will receive a 2-cent-per-gallon donation for every gallon purchased by their supporters through the Upside gas app. The National Foundation for Cancer Research is joining Upside as a founding partner in this program.

Have a community-service announcement of your own to share? Send related news to Kristina Peters at [email protected].