Boon Edam has announced that through a partnership with Mission 500, they raised nearly $5,700 to feed hungry children in Harnett County, N.C. The money was raised during August in a “virtual walk” fundraiser, where each participating employee pledged to walk 50 miles by Aug. 31.

Mission 500 is a nonprofit organization that works closely with the security industry to serve the needs of children and communities in crisis in the United States. Since its inception in 2016, Mission 500 has helped produce over 40,000 meals, assemble care packs filled with essential hygienic items for 2,200 families, and distribute more than 10,000 book bags filled with school supplies to students attending Title One schools.

Because the COVID-19 pandemic has put additional pressure on families in Harnett County, Boon Edam employees wanted to help ensure that local children got enough food to enable them to learn and thrive. Many Harnett County children receive their only meal of the day at school, and with cancelled and virtual classes, these children would go all day without enough to eat. Mission 500 works with local charities to assist these children by providing meals, and, when they return to school, the essential supplies needed to help them succeed academically.

With that in mind, several Boon Edam employees each pledged to walk 50 miles during the month of August to raise money. They were responsible for recruiting sponsors to donate money in exchange for the miles walked. Mission 500 provided a web-based, fundraising tool that allowed the employees to create profile pages and guide their sponsors to their page to make a donation. Boon Edam pledged to match all funds raised, up to $3,000.

On Sept. 1, the virtual walk concluded with $2,700 raised by the employees, plus a $3,000 contribution from Boon Edam. The funds are being donated to a local 501c3 organization called the Harnett County Partnership for Children which serves local community charities that help children and families in crisis.

“As we saw COVID-19 impacting our local families, we knew Boon Edam wanted to help,” said Valerie Anderson, president of Boon Edam. “We’ve partnered with Mission 500 in the past and wanted to do so again this year. It was heartwarming to see our employees eager to help others in our community. In these times, it is easy to become consumed with the negativity around our current social and economic state. Boon Edam will continue to count on our people and resources to look for more opportunities to help our community in these challenging times and in the coming months ahead.”