Which Wich of Williamsburg recently celebrated National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day, which took place April 2, by whipping up a batch of sandwiches for Grove Christian Outreach Center and Avalon: A Center for Women and Children.
Which Wich Superior Sandwiches is national chain based out of Dallas, Texas, and franchises throughout the country will spend the month of April celebrating Peanut Butter and Jelly Day by donating a total of 100,000 sandwiches to organizations in their communities.
It is all a part of Project PB&J, a company-wide initiative that aims to address hunger on both a global and local level.
For every peanut butter and jelly sandwich purchased at a Which Wich location throughout the year, the company will donate one sandwich to a local organization that feeds the needy and one sandwich somewhere else in the world, often as a component of disaster relief.
Though Project PB&J takes place throughout the year, the arrival of April and Peanut Butter and Jelly Day represents a chance to take the initiative up a notch.
Williamsburg franchise owner Bijal Patel decided to partner up with Avalon and Grove Christian Outreach Center to provide 500 sandwiches to local people in need last week.
Patel’s crew came in early March 30 and April 1 for what they like to call a “spreading party”– an assembly line-style setup that allows them to churn out large numbers of sandwiches to donate around town.
“We try to make it a fun experience but I really try to hit home what we’re doing,” Patel said. “We tell them to make [the sandwiches] with love, which sounds cheesy, but it really means to do it neatly, do it properly because if this is going to be someone’s only meal for the day, we want it to be one they remember and enjoy.”
Crew members are assigned different roles, spreading peanut butter or jelly on pieces of bread and then packaging them up for delivery.
Patel estimates he had about 15 employees participate in the two spreading parties, and many team members also accompanied the sandwiches out to their delivery destinations.
“We like them to go out to wherever we’re donating the sandwiches whenever possible, because when they see the facility and they see the people and what we’re really trying to accomplish, that’s when it hits home,” Patel said.
The Which Wich crew was treated to a full tour of Grove Christian Outreach Center’s food pantry and clothes closet, which Patel believes was valuable for impressing upon them the vital services the organization provides to the community.
Patel is hopeful peanut butter and jelly sandwich sales will remain strong throughout the rest of April and that his crew might pull off another round of sandwich donations before the month is out. He has identified several other local organizations such as FISH, the Boys and Girls Club and the Salvation Army as places he would like to work with.
“We’re looking for groups who are able to utilize those sandwiches and give them to people who really need them,” Patel said. “Locally we try to team up with as many organizations as we can. We want to build relationships in the community.”
Patel is also quick to emphasize that though Peanut Butter and Jelly Day comes just once, Which Wich donates sandwiches throughout the year.
“It’s not just a thing we do in April, we want this to be an ongoing effort,” Patel said. “A single PB&J can go a long way to a person in need. We’re making sure we’re always doing our part in the communities Which Wich is in.”
Click here to learn more about Project PB&J and how you can donate.