CHARLESTON - A Par Mar in Parkersburg was the highest fundraiser in a program by the West Virginia Oil Marketers and Grocers Association with the Make-A-Wish Foundation in August that raised $168,507 to help grant the wishes of children diagnosed with life-threatening conditions,
Par Mar Convenience Stores, headquartered in the Mid-Ohio Valley, sold wish stars at its locations across the state and raised $21,382.50. Out of all association members participating, Par Mar's Division Street store in Parkersburg raised $2,552, the most of any single retail outlet participating in the campaign, Jan Vineyard, president of the association, said.
"Our members, as well as the West Virginia public, truly get behind these efforts to help our children," she said. "The results of our August Make-A-Wish Foundation campaign and our April Children's Home Society effort prove this out. This is all about making a difference in a child's life and we are very appreciative of the public who graciously supported this effort."
From the left, Marissa Pedro, regional manager for Make-A-Wish Southern West Virginia; Jim Oppe, board chairman of the West Virginia West Virginia Oil Marketers and Grocers Association and owner of Parkersburg Foodland Stores; Marti Riggall of the association; Traci Nelson of the association; and Jan Vineyard, president of the association.
Vineyard said that all the funds raised through the Make-A-Wish Foundation campaign will go to the southern and northern West Virginia Chapters of the Make-A-Wish Foundation and will be used solely to grant children's wishes.
Wish stars were sold for one dollar at nearly 600 OMEGA-member convenience and grocery stores across the state from Aug. 1 Aug. 30. Little General Convenience Stores sold the highest number of wish stars and single-handedly raised over $23,000.
In addition, a golf outing was held at Stonewall Resort on Sept. 26, where many corporate sponsors, such as Little General Stores, ExxonMobil Fuels Marketing, Marathon Petroleum Co., Maxum Petroleum Co./One Stop, Sledd Co., Prima/7-Eleven, Par Mar Stores and others, donated tens of thousands of dollars to the cause.
"Make-A-Wish opens up a world of possibilities for children with life-threatening medical conditions and asks them to dream the unimaginable. We then work to make the impossible come true not just a nice experience for a day, two days or a week, but a life-changing experience that improves the quality of life for the child and his or her family," Marisa Pedro, regional manager for Make-A-Wish Southern West Virginia, said. "With O.M.E.G.A.'s help, many more children in our region will have this opportunity. We are very thankful for their participation."
The association has raised more than $259,000 in 2012 for organizations that help West Virginia children and more than $1.5 million since 2003 for charities that improve the health, safety and wellbeing of West Virginia children. an organization representing convenience stores, independent grocers and petroleum marketers across West Virginia, in conjunction
For additional information, call Vineyard at (304) 343-5500 or visit the Web site at www.omegawv.com.