Owners of COBS Bread bakeries in Shawnessy and Okotoks, Lee and Kelly Hodgins have a passion for giving back to the communities where their stores are.
Lee and Kelly have been supporting Kidney March at their Shawnessy store since being approached by Kidney Marcher Heather Dean, a renal nurse and enthusiastic member of the Pee Pee Dancers team. “A good friend of Kelly’s needed a kidney transplant and a family member also has kidney issues, so it made sense for us to help out the cause,” says Lee. (Note to Kidney Marchers: never be afraid to ask!)
COBS has a corporate “Dough Raiser’s Program” that encourages franchisees to donate 5% of sales to a charity. “But Kelly and I wanted to do more,” says Lee, “So anyone who shops at COBS Shawnessy can ask for a portion of their purchase to go toward Kidney March, and we’ll put 15% of the sale toward the Kidney March Dough Raiser’s account. It’s as simple as that.”
The couple has found there are big benefits to getting involved in their community, and with Kidney March. “People get to know your name and face, and they know you are there to give back. It helps us build real relationships with people so they actually become more than customers, and they continue to come back.”
Lee says that giving out baked goods at the Kidney March finish line in 2016 was especially meaningful. “We are involved in close to 30 events over the summer,” he says, “but the Kidney March experience touched me the most. Just seeing the closeness and sharing the powerful feeling of everyone coming together at the finish line – it tugged at our heartstrings.”
Lee acknowledges in Calgary’s current economy it can be difficult to give as much as they want to, but there are always ways to make a difference. “Every dollar counts. If everyone gives a little,” he says, “it adds up to a big number in the end.”
To add to the Dough Raiser’s kitty, COBS Shawnessy also puts on an annual anniversary BBQ with all proceeds going toward Kidney March. On the menu – tasty burgers and hot dogs with COBS buns. Lee wants health conscious Kidney Marchers to know that eating bread can be healthy. COBS’ breads contain no diary, eggs, preservatives or colour (with one exception). In fact, their special blend bread has only four ingredients – flour, water, yeast and salt. See more yummy bread here.
Drop in to say hi to Lee and Kelly in Shawnessy. Make sure you mention the Dough Raiser’s Kidney March fund as you check out. Click here for their address.
Here’s a coupon you can use at either location.