FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tucson, AZ, October 5, 2023— Arby’s in Tucson has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to supporting the local Tucson community through their exceptional fundraising efforts over the past few years. What sets them apart is their remarkable dedication to giving back, as they consistently donate a significantly higher percentage of raised funds compared to most other companies. This philanthropic approach has a profound and positive impact on the Tucson community, providing essential resources and support for various local initiatives, organizations, and causes. The Tucson Arby’s generosity not only helps strengthen the community’s social fabric but also highlights the importance of corporate social responsibility in fostering a stronger, more vibrant Tucson for all its residents.
We sat down with Vice President of Operations for the Tucson Arby’s, Jami Salyers, to talk about corporate giving and what being a part of the local Tucson community means to Arby’s.
Jami, Tucson Arby’s has managed to provide a much larger portion of company dollars than a lot of other fundraisers, sometimes up to 50% which is truly remarkable. This level of giving really illustrates your commitment to our local community. Could you tell us a little about the partnerships you’ve forged over the years and level of impact Arby’s is able to generate?
We have formed numerous partnerships in Tucson and the surrounding areas. These partnerships include United Cerebral Palsy of Southern Arizona, Toys for Tots, Arizona Diaper Bank, Southern Arizona Food Bank, Sahuarita Food Bank, Vail ReSources Food Bank, Sierra Vista FireFighters and ALS of Southern Arizona. In addition we heavily support the schools in the Vail school district as well as Sahuaurita and TUSD. Our company is unique in that we seek out these opportunities and look for initiatives most important to those who live in the communities around each restaurant. We are able to do so by staying dialed into social media and getting to know our guests. We watch and listen. Our fundraisers are mostly driven by donations from our generous guests. Over the course of the past 5 years over $750,000 has been donated across these various organizations and schools. 100% of all donations raised stay here in our local community.
Arby’s has a very different experience than other fast food restaurants or “quick service” restaurants, especially locally. When we toured a few of the locations earlier this month we were really impressed with the redesigned dining areas, it has a very cozy and welcoming atmosphere which we loved. It feels like Arby’s is zigging while other fast food chains are leaning more towards a lack of employees as things move to robotic ordering and less human interaction. It was really refreshing to have happy people concerned with creating a good restaurant experience. It’s just a totally different experience, a good one!
Clearly Arby’s has a different perspective on quick service than other chains, certainly when it comes to corporate giving. How would you say Arby’s differs from other companies when it comes to supporting the community?
One of our most important company core values is to “Make a Difference”. We firmly believe it is our responsibility to not only make a difference in the lives of our employees, but those in the surrounding communities who support us each and every day. We often seek out opportunities before we are approached. We actively fundraise vs passively. Our employees are taught the “why” behind each initiative so that they can fully feel confident in the information they are giving our guests when asking for the donation. Our teams are not only experiencing the fulfillment of giving back but also the importance of doing so.
To be completely honest, we were really surprised at the level of support Arby’s has put forth. You just don’t see large organizations seeking out partnerships like this, it’s nice to know there’s companies in Tucson actively looking for causes to donate to and make a difference and we witnessed first hand the dedication of the employees when we were at the Park Ave. location. You can tell it means something to them too. One of those partnerships is with the Arizona Diaper Bank. How long have you been working with them and what are some of the ways you support them?
We have worked with the Arizona Diaper Bank for the past 3 yrs out of our Vail location. Each year we have raised funds in support of their annual Tucson diaper drive. This year we decided to have all 13 locations participate and make a separate donation. We host a 7 week fundraiser in each location where we ask our guests if they would like to make a donation. Our guests seemed to understand the need is great and one that is unspoken. The funds raised were given immediately to the Diaper Bank who could then purchase the diapers needed and a greatly reduced cost.
Yeah, I think Tucsonans know the level of support Women and Children need but wow, 13 locations, 7 weeks, that’s quite a campaign. You teamed up with the Arizona Diaper Bank last year too. How many diapers have you been able to donate since partnering with them?
The Arby’s diaper drive generated $27,215 which equates to 181,000 diapers. We look forward to growing this initiative each year moving forward.
That is fantastic! Keeping the Diaper Bank stocked makes so many people’s lives easier who really need it. What is next for Arby’s community efforts?
As we head towards the end of the year we will be hosting our annual end of year fundraisers. These are 6-8 week fundraisers in which we raise funds for Toys for Tots, Sahuarita Food Bank and Vail ReSources Food Bank. These fundraisers have been in place the past 5 years and have grown year over year. 2022 we generated over $44,000 that was used to purchase thousands of toys and donated to food banks. As we head into 2024, our annual initiatives will continue for each of these organizations with the continued goal to raise more funds than the prior year.
Those are all great causes and close to Tucson’s heart, for sure. Thank you so much for taking the time to sit down with us and talk a little about what it means to Arby’s to be a part of our community here in Tucson. We hope other organizations see what you’re doing and try to keep up. Thank you for everything you do. Where can we follow along to keep up with everything Arby’s has going on?
10115 E Old Vail Road, Tucson, AZ 85747