Special Olympics Arizona (SOAZ) announced it has partnered with Subway Restaurants of Arizona – including every single local restaurant and local owner – on “You Share, We Share,” a campaign that encourages the community to get out and share their weekends with Subway restaurants, and the locally owned restaurants will share right back by donating a percentage of weekend sales, up to $58,000, directly to Special Olympics Arizona.  The program kicks off this weekend and goes every Saturday and Sunday through the end of August. 

“We want to make it as easy as possible for our franchisees, sandwich artists and customers to support Special Olympics,” says franchisee Chad Barnett, who serves as chair of the local Subway Advertising Fund Trust. “We aren’t asking for donations at the counter. We aren’t encouraging customers to visit a website and make a pledge. We are simply inviting them to visit any of our locations in Arizona on Saturday or Sunday for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Every visit will make a difference.”

The local franchisees set a goal of raising more than $50,000 – in part – to honor Subway 50th anniversary, taking place throughout 2015. In addition to supporting SOAZ in its restaurants during the campaign, the sandwich-making pioneers have also signed on to take an active role in SOAZ’s spring and summer events through food and raffle donations as well as hands-on volunteering opportunities, including a May donation of more than 1,300 lunches for athletes and volunteers at the 2015 Special Olympics Summer Games. 

Special Olympics Arizona provides every person with intellectual disabilities a place of welcome, acceptance and the chance to be their best. The practices learned in Special Olympics Arizona also impact their life skills. Sports’ training enhances focus and gives participants a structure for learning important lessons about perseverance, endurance and setting goals. The organization’s mission is to empower over 180,000 Arizonans with intellectual disabilities to be healthy, productive and respected members of society.

“For our athletes, Special Olympics sports provide a gateway to empowerment, competence, acceptance and joy. Every dollar raised through this campaign will impact these amazing athletes and their families at a hyper-local level,” says Tim Martin, President and CEO of SOAZ. “Changing the lives of athletes across Arizona is a group effort, so having a prominent community partner like Subway on our side will be monumental to raise support and awareness.”

Subway has a long history of supporting SOAZ. For more than a decade, Subway Kids & Sports of Arizona, a local non-profit organization founded by Arizona franchisees focused on raising funds to support children’s access to sports and other wellness programs, has funded annual grants to the organization, most recently with a $5,000 award in 2014.  As locally owned and operated franchises, Subway restaurants is excited to be able to further its commitment to the local community.