Guest post by: Priya Dhillon, A&W franchisee
“What makes Burgers to Beat MS the best day of the year is that everyone is so happy.
My parents opened their first A&W restaurant in Heartland Town Centre in Mississauga, ON in 2003. I’ve been working with their A&W franchise group full-time since 2010 and have seen the success the campaign brings year after year.
Every Burgers to Beat MS day, my employees are so motivated and enthusiastic! We work in our restaurants every day but on that day, we get to do our job while making a positive impact on people’s lives.
We have groups of customers come in to support a family member who lives with MS. Buying a Teen Burger® and having $2 donated to the MS Society is such a fun way to show them that you’re there for them. And you get a great meal out of it!
The MS Society has been a great channel for us, as a family, to be able to do more to help others. The staff at the MS Society have always made a strong effort to come into the stores before the campaign to educate my staff. I know there were occasions where staff members had never heard of MS, so understanding the disease was crucial to the success of Burgers to Beat MS.
My staff and I have met many people in the community living with MS during this campaign, so we have seen firsthand the challenges that can come from living with MS. Knowing that the funds we’ve raised as a company will be going to help improve their lives and make every day happier and a little bit easier means so much to the A&W family. Our campaign helps further much needed research to find life-changing treatments and hopefully one day, a cure for those with MS.
Over the years, on Burgers to Beat MS day, we’ve made a strong connection with Michael Augustine, who lives with MS and is an MS Society ambassador. He would bring us cookies and put a smile on all our faces. Now that his MS has progressed, our staff is hopeful that he’ll be able to come back and rally for the cause. The relationship they have with him is beautiful and it wouldn’t have been possible without this campaign.
I want people to know that, as a franchisee, we don’t only participate in Burgers to Beat MS because it’s a good business day for us. The reason we love the day so much is that it gives us the opportunity to give back to our community and to help improve the lives of those affected by MS.
I’ve seen companies use Burgers to Beat MS day as an event where they’ll call us the morning of, asking to buy 50 or even 100 Teen Burgers, for their whole team lunch that day. I think more people should do that – we’ll have them ready for you! We’re all looking to give back to our communities and be socially aware of the world we live in. This is a small way to do that.
What truly makes this day so special is getting the opportunity to meet people living with MS, making those personal connections, seeing the community come together and understanding what we’re all working towards – a world free of MS.