20 Sep 2015 Conway Regional donates water for Faulkner County schools to sell
by Sonja J. Keith
Conway Regional Health System is helping Faulkner County schools in a unique way – by donating more than 47,000 bottles of water for the schools to sell in their concession stands and keep all the money for whatever is needed most.
Lori Scroggin, chief development officer and corporate director of marketing/foundation for Conway Regional, said over the years the hospital has purchased bottles of water with a Conway Regional label to donate for special events. “It’s been in my mind that we could do that on a larger scale,” she said.
Initially, Scroggin met last spring with Conway School District Superintendent Dr. Greg Murry to get his thoughts on the project. With his positive feedback, the athletic director at each public and private high school was contacted to see if they were interested.
“They were very receptive,” Scroggin said. “This is unbudgeted revenue for them.”
Each district identified the number of bottles they would need. Conway’s order was the largest – eight pallets or 10,752 bottles. In total, 35 pallets of water were ordered, representing 47,040 bottles of water.
“Each school received a supply of bottled water equivalent to what they normally sell throughout the year in their concessions,” Scroggin said.
Each district sets the price on how much to sell each bottle of water. If every school were to charge $1.50, the donated water would generate $70,560 in revenue. Conway Regional’s investment in the project was $20,000, a little less than 50 cents per bottle. “The value is triple our investment,” Scroggin said. “That was just a way for us to support the schools with a much larger impact.”
Conway Regional will evaluate the program to decide whether to continue and possibly expand it to other schools in the area.
“We’re supporting those who support us,” Scroggin said. “Many of our employees were educated at these schools.”
In addition to the donated water, Conway Regional has provided support to local schools in other ways, including the donation of Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) valued at more than $70,000.
“Conway Regional has supported our schools in many different ways throughout the years including game sponsorships, educational speakers and special tours. We are excited about this new way to help each of the schools raise more money than we could ever donate on our own!”
Schools thankful for donation
Each school district in Faulkner County will decide how much to charge for the water donated by Conway Regional Health System and where the proceeds will be used.
“The Conway Public Schools Athletic program offers 15 different sports in grades seven through 12,” said athletic director Steve Daniels. “The money that will be generated through the sale of the bottled water donated by Conway Regional will have a direct impact on helping fund these sports along with the Conway Band.
“We will be selling the bottled water through all of our concession stands throughout the year at $1.50 per bottle. The Conway Band has the concessions for all football 7-12 during the year. The proceeds from the sale of the water during football will go to help the band.
“The money generated from the sale of the water will be used to help purchase equipment for the different sports, provide meals on away trips, athletic awards and the end-of-year sports recognition program just to mention a few. Thanks to Conway Regional!”
Conway – St. Joseph
St. Joseph Athletic Director Chris Kordsmeier said the donation will help the entire athletic department, from fuel for transportation to equipment.
“We greatly appreciate the water for sure.”
The school will sell the water for $1.
“St. Joseph High School is very thankful to Conway Regional Health System for the donations. This is a win for both of us. Thanks again.”
“This donation of water will serve as a great revenue stream in our concession stands for our athletic and band department,” said athletic director Stephen Wood. “Our price for the water is $1 per bottle which is now 100 percent profit thanks to Conway Regional.
“The revenue will be used for the general athletic and booster club funds to help buy uniforms, equipment, meals, etc. for our students.”
Wood added that the water is healthier and more affordable alternative for some families. “If you have your family at a game, the concession stand can become pretty expensive quickly. With this donated water, we can offer $1 bottles of water instead of the $2 bottles of water which could mean significant savings over the course of a ball season for a family.”
“It is a very generous donation that allows our PTOs to raise funds through the sale of this donated water,” said superintendent John Gray. “The money will be used as determined by the parents in these organizations to support our student athletes.”
The district set the price at $1 each.
“We appreciate the donation very much.”
“It helps so that we can sell them for $1 to encourage drinking more water,” said athletic director Justin Rodgers. “The revenue will help the athletic budget by making 100 percent profit. I think it is a great idea and helps encourage eating and drinking healthier.”
“It is very beneficial to our programs and will save funds that can be used in other ways for our students,” said athletic director Ed Sellers. “I anticipate that most of the water will be used as free to groups that need it, but if or when we sell it, we plan to charge $1.
“This donation is big. It allows us to provide extra hospitality to our activity students and to our guests.”