Strange Donuts Launches Strange Cares Charity Effort for Three Children’s Charities
Strange Donuts’ first birthday came with some big announcements—a combined storefront with Seoul Taco in Columbia, Missouri, a set opening date for their second location in Kirkwood and plans for a third St. Louis location, Strange Trap Kitchen, to open in the Central West End before the end of the year.
In keeping with the momentum, the donut shop is also launching Strange Cares, a charity effort to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters, Girls On The Run, and The Children’s Heart Foundation. Strange Donuts co-owner Jason Bockman says they hope that people can gather information, donate money or otherwise engage these charities through Strange Cares.
They plan to have two keynote Strange Cares events, each of which will benefit all three charities monetarily. The first is National Donut Day, held on the first Friday in June, which Strange held this past summer outside of Kuva Coffee Factory with more than 30 local artists, restaurants, breweries and businesses. A music festival-like event is also in the works.
Bockman says they’d also like to host events that will benefit the charities individually by giving them exposure to help raise awareness and volunteers. “Big Brothers Big Sisters has a waiting list right now that’s about 2,000 kids,” Bockman says. “We want to do an event soon that will help raise awareness for issues like that. We want to try to leverage our audience right now to say these are worthwhile causes, and all they need is an hour or two from you.”
The shop has supported many charities over the past year, Bockman says, by hosting events, making custom donuts and simply writing checks. After getting inundated with requests for donations, he and co-owner Corey Smale sat down to determine who they wanted to help, and how to best do that.
“We don’t want someone to come in to the donut shop and constantly feel like they have to give money to a charity, because that can kind of be exhausting,” Bockman says. “We’d like to do these events in a way that makes them fun, inviting, all-inclusive and encompassing.”
Bockman says they purposely selected charities that are focused on helping and empowering kids.
“We want to help kids feel like they can do whatever they want in life and set them up to have the best opportunity to do so,” Bockman says. “I was in Big Brothers Big Sisters when I was a kid, and I had a big brother in the program who helped me tremendously. I’m now a Big, and it’s not as big of a responsibility as a lot of people make it out to be.”
Strange Cares will be looking for volunteers, and Bockman says if people want to volunteer to help administratively or by organizing events, they’d welcome that.
“We’d like whoever wants to be involved to be involved,” he says. 2709 Sutton Blvd., Maplewood, 314.932.5851