How Burritos Are Helping to Put AIDS Under Wraps
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How Burritos Are Helping to Put AIDS Under Wraps

Grand Circle relishes a new fundraising effort in support the AIDS Action Committee

HIV/AIDS doesn't receive the kind of attention it did when it burst onto the scene in 1983. But while great strides have been made in containing the disease, it remains incurable—and deadly when untreated.

The oldest and largest AIDS service organization in New England is the AIDS Action Committee (AAC) of Massachusetts, a nonprofit organization dedicated to stopping the HIV/AIDS epidemic and providing support to those living with the virus. While hope is strong that a cure will one day be found, funding for research and support remains critical.

The organization's marquee fundraiser is the annual AIDS 5K Walk & Run around Boston, an event dedicated to helping those affected by the disease to raise both funds and awareness, and to honor the memories of those who were lost. When the event was launched in 1986 as the AIDS Walk, thousands of supporters joined in, raising $325,000 toward prevention education, outreach, and treatment programs. On June 3, the 2012 event raised more than $900,000, with more than 10,000 participating. Grand Circle associates and their friends and family eagerly pitched in, fielding a team of 25 who walked or ran in the event.

But this year, not all of the money was raised by putting foot to pavement. A new neighbor of Grand Circle headquarters on Congress Street in Boston—a branch of Boloco, a Boston-based chain of "inspired burrito" restaurants—offered to give the walkers and runners a helping hand.

On May 31, the Thursday before the event, Boloco donated 250 burritos to corporate headquarters for a $10-a-plate all-you-can-eat fundraiser. For $25 a plate, participants were also entered to win a pair of Red Sox tickets, donated by Grand Circle Corporation Chairman Alan Lewis. Grand Circle Foundation matched every $25 donation.

How successful was the burrito-a-thon? Every burrito was gone in 10 minutes! AAC Executive Director (and long-time friend of Grand Circle Foundation) Rebecca Haag was also on hand for the festivities, in which associates gathered in the loading dock area behind the headquarters building for food, fun, and the satisfaction of knowing it was all for a good cause.

In all, Grand Circle Corporation contributed more than $7,000 this year—landing the company among the top 15 participating teams in the state. We are proud to continue our several-year association and support of the AAC. The Foundation is also honored to be a past recipient of the AAC's "Commitment to Action" award.

Featured in our June 2012 E-Newsletter. Read the full issue here.