The Star Icon campaign is simple: each ARO store competes to raise money for local kids who are battling life-threatening illnesses, by selling stars for $1 each to store patrons.
“We believe the Star Icon Campaign helps bring the community together to serve for a larger purpose—to help local kids and to make their wishes come true,” said Sarah Pettit, the Public Relations & Social Media Manager for Associated Retail Operations. “As a local grocery store, we know it is important to give back to the communities we serve.”
Pettit said the Star Icon campaign has strength because of the association communities have with local Utah Wish Kids—many customers personally know the featured children and wish to help because of this relationship. Even the employees in the stores often feel a connection with the Wish kid their store is featuring, and according to Pettit, “a real sense of ownership comes into play,” as each team wants to make local wishes come true. Some even take steps to help enhance their Wish Kids’ wishes.
In 2012, Dan’s Market at 3300 South felt such a connection to the child featured in their store, that the store’s team members and guests wanted to do everything they could to make the child’s wish come true. When a store guest read the wish story, he felt so moved by the local support that he generously donated a few special goodies to help enrich the wish experience. After receiving so much support from their patrons, Dan’s 3300 South location threw a party for the wish child as a demonstration of their love and dedication to the families of their community.
“What it all comes down to is our teams truly care for their Wish Kids. They get the purpose and have the heart and passion to make this drive successful year after year,” Pettit said. “I'm humbled to live in a state that cares for local kids and work for a company that recognizes a need—a gift of joy—that needs to be filled. Together, we make our community a great place to live.”