About 400 Dayton families lined their cars outside the University of Dayton Arena Wednesday to receive several boxes of food and other necessities as Thanksgiving approaches.
The partnership between Fazoli’s, Feed the Children and the Miami Valley Community Action Partnership offered a 25-pound box of nonperishable food items, a 15-pound box of essential hygiene products, a box of Avon products and a ham.
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“We recognize hunger can’t be fought alone, but by working together, we can provide food and essentials to millions of children and families who live in poverty,” said Travis Arnold, president and CEO of Feed the Children. “Hope for a better future is made possible thanks to our partnership with Fazoli’s who plays a vital role in helping us create a world where no child goes to bed hungry.”
The Miami Valley Community Action Partnership pre-identified the 400 families in need to receive the donation boxes, that include vegetables, peanut butter, mac and cheese, shampoo and toothpaste.
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Fazoli’s CEO Carl Howard was born and raised in the Dayton area, attending the former Fairmont East High School. He got into the restaurant business after looking for his first job on his 16th birthday. The best part about working in the food industry was a free or discounted meal every day, he said.
“I grew up in this town, and I grew up hungry,” Howard said. “I was underweight as a child, was a late bloomer because I wasn’t getting enough food. My dad was working two jobs, and listen, life isn’t fair and never has been, never will be. I had a great childhood. I loved it. But I also know what it’s like to be in need.”
Now it’s an obligation to give back, he said.
There are eight Fazoli’s restaurants in the Dayton market, making it the fifth largest market for Fazoli’s restaurants.
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