Mom and Pop Stores

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US Corporate Giving Programs: Leaders

The 2018 Chronicle of Philanthropy's survey of charitable giving was used to get the list of the largest corporate giving programs in the US. These figures were based on how much these companies donated in 2017.

Gilead Sciences

  • Gilead Sciences has donated $388 million.
  • Gilead does charitable giving through the Gilead Foundation. They make grants to organizations that focus on education, outreach, health services, and prevention with regard to HIV/AIDS, liver diseases, hematology and oncology, and inflammatory and respiratory diseases.

Wells Fargo

  • Through community and volunteer grants, Wells Fargo donated $286.5 million.
  • Wells Fargo's corporate giving program involves philanthropy and volunteerism. Their volunteers recorded 2 million hours in 2017. From the $286.5 million, employees donated $85 million to 40,000 nonprofit organizations, and they have donated 2% of their after-tax profits.

Goldman Sachs

  • Through grants, they donated $280 million.
  • Their program is aimed at encouraging innovative ideas and solving economic and social issues that can help underserved communities around the world. Goldman has donated over $1.6 billion through its Goldman Sachs Gives program.


  • Through grants, Google gave $255 million to charity.
  • Their program is aimed at helping to solve humanity's biggest challenges by supporting underserved communities and providing opportunities worldwide. Their goal is to donate $1 billion in grants over a five-year period.
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US Corporate Giving Programs: Beyond Charity

Two examples of companies that are not only giving money to charity for a cause or causes that they believe in, but are actively involved in those causes are Microsoft and Kraft Heinz. Microsoft is heavily invested in education. Apart from making grants to non-profits and organizations in child education, they also actively conduct programs, donate their software, and lobby governments. Kraft Heinz often donates to organizations and local governments to help eradicate child hunger. Every year they work with other organizations to cook meals for struggling families. More details below.

Microsoft's Efforts with Education

  • In 2012, Microsoft launched the YouthSpark program. The program was designed to help children in 100 countries around the world.
  • Four years ago, Microsoft, through YouthSpark, donated $75 million to 100 nonprofit partners in 55 countries. All nonprofit partners align with Microsoft's goal of helping children learn computer science skills.
  • Apart from a donation, Microsoft lobbies governments and policymakers to get the funding and support necessary to help these initiatives around the world.
  • They work with schools and government offices to provide free computer and technology training to children,
  • This program aims to boost digital inclusion in schools, provide tools to children to help them think about their future, and help them gain the skills to be employed or start their own businesses.

Kraft Heinz's Fight Against Hunger

  • Kraft Heinz does their corporate giving through the Kraft Heinz Company Foundation. Their initiatives are often centered around ending child hunger.
  • Apart from ending hunger, their programs are aimed at supporting education, community, agriculture, and nutrition programs.
  • In the past, they have awarded grants to cities like San Diego and Delaware to help feed starving families with children.
  • Kraft Heinz has taken active part in ending world hunger. In 2019, they partnered with Rise Against Hunger to give one million meals for children and their families in about 15 countries around the world.
  • Since 2013, Kraft Heinz has made more than 15.2 million meals for starving families around the world.

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Mom and Pop Stores: Promoting Good

The research was unable to prove or disprove the hypothesis that mom-and-pop stores promote good in their communities; after conducting thorough research about the topic, we were able to find examples of mom-and-pop stores' charitable contributions, but statistical data about mom-and-pop stores' giving was publicly unavailable. Several mom-and-pop stores in the US donated to people in Haiti, and a number of them volunteered as well.

Examples of Charitable Giving

  • A local mom-and-pop toy store located in Hamtramck, Michigan, donated all of its toys to the local public; a post on the store's official Facebook page said that it was closing its last storage unit and that people who are looking to start a new business can come to its facility and take as many toys as they want for free.
  • Amna Saleem, also known as @AGlasgowGirl on Twitter, helps her family run a family corner shop. In an interview with BBC, Saleem revealed that the corner shop gave "supplies to local charities and facilitated simple provisions for NHS staff during the pandemic."
  • According to the Greenwich Times, a local newspaper, locally-owned mom-and-pop stores "sponsor the local Little League teams and donate to the school fundraisers." This particular article was an opinion piece from Linda McMahon, a resident of Greenwich, co-founder and former CEO of WWE, and Connecticut's Republican nominee for the US Senate in 2012.
  • Jeffrey Manley and Jusak Yang Bernhard are the owners of a mom-and-pop store called Wag Heaven. Wag Heaven organizes several fundraising events in Texas, and the proceeds from these events are donated "to those in need." In addition to organizing fundraising events, the store also arranges educational workshops for the local people by partnering with institutions like the Pet Club and The Playful Child.

Charitable Giving by Small Businesses

  • According to a research study published by SCORE, small businesses in the US contribute to their local communities in numerous ways, "75% of small business owners in the US donate an average of 6% of their profits to charitable organizations annually."
  • 66% of small businesses donate to local charitable organizations, and nearly half of them (48%) give to youth organizations.
  • As per the study data, 42% of small businesses donate to local first responders, and 39% support local religious organizations.
  • 37% of small business owners in the US help local service groups, like rotary clubs and scouts, and 37% of them volunteer and donate food in soup kitchens.
  • Constant Contact's research about small family-owned businesses in the US revealed that, on average, family-owned businesses in America donate $50,000 a year.
  • A survey conducted by Sage reported that small business owners personally donate to charities and nonprofit organizations every year. 92% of small business owners who participated in Sage's research study agreed that they donate to nonprofits and charitable organizations. "53% of the small business owners also actively engage their employees to volunteer, and 58% wished that they could do more to support the local communities."

Research Strategy

Due to the lack of publicly available data about mom-and-pop stores' contributions or charitable giving, we were unable to conclude whether mom-and-pop stores promote good in their communities. While we were able to find several examples of mom-and-pop stores that contribute to their local communities, no statistics were available in the public domain to prove or disprove the hypothesis that mom-and-pop stores promote good in their communities.

In order to find relevant statistics, we searched for official studies or statistical reports from organizations like the US Small Business Administration, SCORE, and the International Council for Small Business. SCORE has published numerous research reports and statistics about the contributions made by small businesses in the US, but none of the reports provided any clear research methodologies (size of these small businesses was not provided); as a reason of which, we were unable to establish that the findings from these reports were relevant to our research. The US Small Business Administration has also published multiple research studies detailing the importance of mom-and-pop stores; however, none of the reports mentioned charitable giving from these stores.

Since we were unable to locate any relevant information from the previous approach, we searched for relevant surveys PewResearch, Nielsen, Gallup, and several others, but no surveys have been conducted by any of these portals about the charitable giving from mom-and-pop stores in the US.

During our research, we found multiple sources citing individual contributions from mom-and-pop stores in the US; for instance, an NPR transcript mentioned that during the 2010 Haiti earthquake, several mom-and-pop stores in the US donated to people in Haiti and a number of them volunteered as well.

We searched for examples of charitable giving from local mom-and-pop stores in different US states; for this, we searched through the local media sources operating in different states. We were able to find some examples of local corner stores and small mom-and-pop stores' charitable initiatives.

Since we were unable to find hard data to support the statement that mom-and-pop stores promote good in their communities, we have not concluded the hypothesis; however, with the examples that we have provided in our research findings, it is evident that mom-and-pop stores do contribute to their communities. We have included a few sources that were published before 2018 because recent sources were unavailable.
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Mom and Pop Stores: Promoting Good Case Studies

Small business owners give back to their communities because of the love and commitment they have to them. Some small business owners report that their communities add an important human element to their businesses, which is what drives them to help make their communities better. Below are two examples that detail local business owners that provide for their communities along with success and recognition.

Chesapeake Thrift Shop Gives Free Food and Discounts

  • This thrift shop is named St. Luke Thrift Store. It is situated in Chesapeake, VA, and is owned by Melton Sampson.
  • During the pandemic, his shop helped people who were in need of items but couldn't afford them by allowing these customers to buy items for just 25 cents.
  • He also works with food banks and local grocery stores to provide food outside his thrift shop. And for those who aren't able to travel, he will go into the community and hand the food to them.
  • He was awarded a $300 Visa gift card and a plaque by a local news station for his contribution to the community.

Wright's Market Drives Customers

  • Wright's Market is a family-owned grocery store based in Opelika, Alabama.
  • In 2014, the owner, Jimmy Wright, refurbished an old van and began a free shuttle service for those who couldn't drive to and from the store. The service, called Wright2U, customers can call for a ride to the grocery store. This service has grown to 15 shuttles today.
  • This program became so successful that it expanded to an online platform where customers can shop for groceries online.
  • The store owner's mission is helping to solve hunger, housing, and healthcare in the community. The grocery store is also one of the few independently-owned stores to partner with the government to allow customers to shop with their EBT cards online.
  • In 2015, he was awarded the Spirit of Opelika Award from the Opelika Chamber of Commerce for his work in the community. He also won the Dream Big-Blue Ribbon Award.