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CHP Receives $2,000 from Panera Bread for Resident Services Programs

Christiansburg, VA – A representative from Panera Bread recently presented Community Housing Partners (CHP) with a lot of dough, though not of the flour and water variety. This gift came in the form of a $2,000 check to support resident services programming in Christiansburg and Pulaski. Panera Bread collected the funds throughout 2011 using collection containers displayed at the two New River Valley Panera Bread bakery-cafés, which are operated under the Blue Ridge Bread franchise.

Christiansburg-based CHP is a nonprofit community development corporation dedicated to providing affordable and sustainable housing to low-income individuals and households across the southeast. Since its inception in 1975, CHP has also committed itself to meeting resident needs and investing in the future success of its residents. This focus on its clients’ economic, social, and environmental needs led to the creation of its Resident Integrated Services & Education (RISE) program in 1997. An organization-wide network that combines human services with economic development programming, RISE programming assists low- to moderate-income families in overcoming commonly faced obstacles around issues such as illiteracy, lack of job skills, poor physical and mental health, social isolation, and money management.

“We are tremendously grateful for this special support from Panera Bread and their generous customers,” said Melissa Byrd, the public relations coordinator at CHP.  “With this donation, CHP will be able to buy much-needed books for the young residents of Linden Green, a Section 8 rental community in Christiansburg, as well as program supplies to help decrease social isolation among the elderly, disabled residents at Puaski’s Bluegrass Community Apartments.”

Panera Bread founded Operation Dough-Nation in 1992 to formalize the company’s commitment to community involvement. One of the major activities of this community outreach effort is the Community Breadbox™ cash collection boxes. The Community BreadboxTM program ensures that donations made at Panera Bread feed back into the community. Cash donations made by customers in the bakery-cafés are distributed to local non-profit organizations.

If you would like to contribute to Panera’s local Community BreadboxTM program, look for the Community BreadboxTM collection containers at the Christiansburg and Blacksburg Panera Bread locations.  For exact locations of the bakery-cafes, please go to www.panerabread.com.

About Panera Bread:
Panera Bread Company owns and franchises 1,388 bakery-cafes as of March 30, 2010 under the Panera Bread®, Saint Louis Bread Co®, and Paradise Bakery & Café® names. With its identity rooted in handcrafted, fresh-baked, artisan bread, it is committed to providing great-tasting, quality food that people can trust. 

For more than 16 years, Panera and its franchisees have helped hundreds of charitable organizations through Operation Dough-Nation, a broader company outreach program which promotes community involvement and charitable giving by local Panera bakery-cafes. Panera’s Community BreadboxTM program focuses on bringing Panera and its customers together to make a difference in the community. Donation containers are placed near the registers in all Panera bakery-cafes for customers to contribute. The company then matches a portion of the donations and distributes the money to local charities of their choosing.  Additional information is available on the company’s website, www.panerabread.com.