By Andy Kriege
There is a long history of charity and helping the underprivileged in the communities that Grand Appliance and TV serves dating back to the founders of the business. Grand is a family-owned appliance, mattress and electronics retailer established in 1930. Helping the community and people in need is not only part of the Grand family history, it is part of the Grand culture.
The commitment to helping others has now seeped down to the fourth generation of Grand Appliance family members and employees. Meagan Gauri, great granddaughter of founder Fredrik Hjelmeland, has carried on that tradition by starting Grand Foundation. Since its inception in the summer of 2018, Grand Foundation has been able to offer numerous grants to a variety of groups, organizations and individuals in the communities that the Grand Appliance store chain serves.
Grand is invested in helping the most critical needs of those in the communities in which Grand Appliance stores are located (22 stores in 4 Midwest states). Their focus is on education, social harmony and assisting the underserved.
Having a reach over these states, Executive Director Meagan Gauri hopes the foundation makes a small change in the lives of people in need. “We strive to continue the legacy of helping others cemented by our parents and grandparents who established Grand Appliance,” Gauri said.
One of the new initiatives that Grand has launched in 2019 is “Twelve Months of Giving.” Each month, Grand Foundation will highlight a different non-profit group to support a local charity doing great work in the communities that Grand Appliance serves. Grand Foundation will support the chosen organization by donating to them, promoting the initiative, volunteering to help and supporting their cause in any way they can.
The month of February featured a diaper drive conducted on behalf of Twice as Nice Mother & Child, a charity that provides help and hope to families in crisis by distributing diapers and other basic needs at no cost. Diapers are a necessity not covered under any assistance program. During the entire month of February, Grand promoted the diaper drive. Collection boxes were set up inside of several Grand stores where customers and staff could donate to the cause.
Over 5,000 diapers were collected and shipped to the Twice as Nice collection facility in Waukegan, Illinois.
These grants have been dispersed in an area covering northern Illinois, southern and central Wisconsin, Indianapolis, Indiana and Davenport, Iowa.
“Having a reach over these states, we hope we are making a small change in the lives of people in need,” Gauri said.
The mission of the Grand Foundation is to partner with its communities to promote education and social harmony for people of all ages.
For more comprehensive information of what the foundation has done, visit the website at grandfound.org.
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