Jason Wheeler, left, of Orion Construction and Christine Lentine of Kids' Food Basket work at the nonprofit's Grand Rapids facility. Courtesy Orion Construction
A builder and a brewer came together to help fill a holiday food basket for thousands of local kids.
Grand Rapids-based Orion Construction and The Mitten Brewing Co. combined forces to raise about $2,800 for Kids’ Food Basket in Grand Rapids just before Christmas.
Orion employees and their family members donated money and food to the nonprofit that provides hungry schoolchildren with sack suppers.
Then the general contractor and a few other local businesses collected more food items and cash during the week before Christmas.
The effort culminated with a fundraiser at The Mitten in Grand Rapids that featured local musicians and was attended by Orion officials, KFB board members and representatives of the Wheeler Family Foundation.
“We took the Mitten Brewery fundraiser as an opportunity to thank KFB for all they do in the community and offer some support in return," said Jason Wheeler, Orion public relations coordinator, KFB board member and Wheeler Family Foundation president. "We wanted people to know how important this cause is. We wanted people to have fun giving, and we wanted to find creative ways to engage the community in these types of activities.
“The generosity of Orion’s staff and the community at large was very inspiring,” he added.
The Wheeler Family Foundation matched the fundraising total from The Mitten event, which turned out to be more than $1,500 overall. Employees at Orion Construction donated more than $1,200 in cash and food items. Kids’ Food Basket received the contributions on Dec. 26.
“We’ve decided to ramp up our charitable efforts, formalizing our corporate giving per our 2014 strategic plan and find ways to inspire our employees, clients and subcontractors to help this coming year and beyond,” said Orion Construction CEO John Boonstra.
“We know how important it is to be part of our community’s betterment, and we’re looking forward to future opportunities to help organizations like Kids’ Food Basket.”