Bridget Bannerholt is the Admin Manager with Cargill in Edmonton and has been with the organization for the past 16 years. In that timeframe – she has also been a staple volunteer and ambassador for RMHC. We had the chance to catch up with Bridget and learn more about the national commitment made by Cargill to RMHC and the way that makes a massive impact on a local level.
“When we do orientation, we share our impact about Ronald McDonald House and how they impact the organization by being a Cargill employee,” says Bridget. “There are facilities across Canada who go to the Houses and support the families and the organization.” The commitment Cargill has nationally to RMHC is truly inspiring.
“So many of our employees are donating to RMHC through payroll deductions and it is great to see,” says Bridget. And she works with the team at RMHC Alberta to ensure that her team members are aware of how those donations are used to support families with sick children.
One of the most significant contributions Bridget and her team provide is through the Home for Dinner program.
Back in 2008 RMHC Alberta reached out to Cargill and asked for some support for a pilot project. This pilot project was the beginning of Home for Dinner. Cargill enthusiastically agreed and nearly two decades later – hundreds of thousands of plates of food have been served to families staying at the House.
Cargill and their team members are at the House every single month making a significant contribution to those number of plates.
Bridget is one of the constants at the prep table – showing up every single month. “It is very overwhelming and very heartwarming – our team members walk out feeling really good and really helpful.”
“The volunteer experience is one of a kind. You meet the families who are so welcoming and grateful – whether you are there to cook or bake or help with cleaning,” Bridget shares. “Everyone is saying hi and welcome and you get a sense of family.”
Cargill always cooks for more than expected during their Home for Dinner shift ensuring that leftovers are there for families getting home late at night.
“We cook nutritious meals so that families don’t have to worry about one more thing,” says Bridget. “We provide a comfort that families need when they get back to the House.” And that is the local impact of Cargill on the families staying at RMHC Alberta, providing comfort for families at their home away from home.
Bridget is also a great ambassador for RMHC Alberta. She is out there looking for donations, talking to her networks about RMHC Alberta, and even spending time at the grocery store fielding questions about why she has so much in her cart, proudly saying “We’re making a meal at the Ronald McDonald House tonight…did you want to learn more?”
With a focus on nutrition, food security, and sustainability Cargill supports RMHC in so many ways. They host their own events, they volunteer for RMHC Alberta events, they provide the meat for our galas, silent auction items, and so much more. This involvement extends across the province and the teams at Cargill work together to provide for the Houses in their local communities.
Having a partner like Cargill ensures that families staying at RMHC Alberta can stay together and focus on the medical journey and the family connection. We’re grateful for their continued support and generosity to RMHC Alberta.