Arby's begins tour to fight childhood hunger

ATLANTA: The Arby's Foundation has partnered with Share Our Strength's "No Kid Hungry" campaign to launch the "Hungry for Happiness" mobile tour.

ATLANTA: The Arby's Foundation has partnered with Share Our Strength's “No Kid Hungry” campaign to launch the “Hungry for Happiness” mobile tour.

One of the organization's vehicles will travel to 30 US cities through August with the goal of increasing enrollment in summer meal programs and raising awareness of childhood hunger.

The foundation is the charitable-giving arm of Arby's Restaurant Group. This is the second year the vehicle will make its way across the country. Yet this year, it has doubled the number of stops from 2012.

In each market, the vehicle will stop at an existing No Kid Hungry partner summer meal site, where children can go during the out-of-school months to receive a free meal.

“So many families struggle to put food on their table, but they need to know that resources in their communities are available to keep their families healthy and thriving,” said Kate Atwood, executive director of the Arby's Foundation. “We especially focus on summertime, because children are much more vulnerable when they don't have that regular access to meals that they may receive during the school year.”

The foundation is working with Fishman Public Relations, which is conducting media outreach on its behalf. The firm is targeting major TV networks and national print and online media in many of the markets where the truck will stop.

The agency has circulated a multimedia press release, as well.

The organization is also raising awareness of the effort via the Arby's Foundation website, as well as the Twitter and Facebook pages of both the foundation and Arby's restaurants.

On the local level, the group's charitable and franchise partners are sharing information with customers via in-store messaging on tray liners, store posters, bag stuffers, media outreach, and other traditional marketing. The organization gave each local partner and franchisee a customized press release and media advisory, as well as a press kit, to help with their outreach.

The initiative also includes a texting program administered by Share Our Strength. Consumers can text their Zip Code to a designated phone number and receive a response with the address of summer meal sites in their community.

“The challenges remain in that, as a nonprofit, we have limited resources to be able to heavily promote the campaign in every city we are visiting,” Atwood said. “We have an aggressive schedule to visit 30 cities by August, so we are relying on our local partners to help us promote the campaign at the grassroots level.”

Fishman Public Relations deferred comment on the initiative to its client.

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