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Dozens of dollars in donuts will be donated to Lansing nonprofits

November 30, 2023
Groovy Donuts is pictured March 31, 2020.
Groovy Donuts is pictured March 31, 2020.

At Lansing nonprofit KCS Angels' special events, sweet treats from Groovy Donuts are often the fuel of choice. But in Groovy Donuts inaugural Day of Giving event, the local donut shop will give the adult disability organization and four other Lansing-based nonprofits more than baked goods.

On Nov. 30, 100% of donut sales will be donated to the five organizations.

“One of the things we’re trying to do, especially during the holiday season, is to make giving as easy as possible,” Groovy Donuts co-founder Andrew Gauthier said. “I can’t imagine a much easier way to do that than to treat yourself to a donut.”

Gauthier and his partner Monica Gauthier have been personally and professionally involved with each of the nonprofits in the fundraiser since the shop’s founding in 2015. 

“From the very beginning, we’ve really made it a point of trying to support our community,” Andrew said. “Dedicating a whole day allows us to make a big impact not only in the fundraising perspective, but in bringing awareness to these organizations.”

Andrew said they donate most of their leftover donuts to Child and Family Charities, a private nonprofit organization that works to strengthen and support children, families and individuals in mid-Michigan.

“The organizations we work with mesh with our values,” Andrew said. “We support organizations we think do a lot of good in our community.”

KCS Angels is a nonprofit organization created by individuals with disabilities to support other Lansing community members with disabilities. The organization’s partnership with Groovy Donuts dates back to 2017 when Andrew invited members of KCS Angels to help with a fundraiser at the shop’s Williamston and East Lansing locations.

KCS Angels executive director and founder Tracy Smith said Monica and Andrew are “always there and ready to help.”

The Gauthiers were close with Smith’s brother-in-law, Scott, who was the inspiration behind and co-founder of KCS Angels, Smith said. Scott, who was diagnosed with Down syndrome, died in 2021. 

Beyond delivering dozens of donuts to KCS Angels' events, the Gauthiers also financially invest in the organization, Smith said.

“They have always made KCS a priority,” Smith said. “There’s been a couple of times when I’ve gotten an email from one of them saying they did a fundraiser for us, and I didn’t even know.”

Another nonprofit that will receive donations from the fundraiser is Project Friends Involved in Sportfishing Heritage, or FISH. The state-wide organization is part of the MSU Department of Fisheries and Wildlife and seeks to educate the community about sport fishing and aquatic resources. As a MSU Fisheries and Wildlife alumna, Monica has remained involved with the department since she graduated in 2012.

“I’ve been working with Monica for a while,” Project FISH coordinator Mark Stephens said. “She likes to give back to the community, and she has the ability to do that.”

Stephens said his partnership with Monica ranges from sharing their love of wildlife to helping her with ideas for products, suggesting for years that Monica should create a fishing-related donut to depict their passion. 

“When you get a degree from the fisheries and wildlife department here at MSU, you always love fisheries and wildlife and the outdoors,” Stephens said. 

Andrew said he would love to work with additional nonprofits in the area in future day-long fundraising events.

“Depending on how it goes this year and how successful it is, we can maybe enhance it and do different things to try to be even more impactful,” Andrew said. “A lot of those plans are going to be based on the feedback we get.”

As a way to gauge donut demand on the day, donut pre-orders are encouraged and will count toward the donated sales, Andrew said.

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“We’re hoping to get as many pre-orders as possible to give us a sense of what to expect for the day and make sure to staff it appropriately,” Andrew said. “In a situation where we’re donating everything we make, we don’t want to run out of donuts too early.”

As 100% of the sales are being donated, the Gauthiers will pay Groovy staff members out-of-pocket, Andrew said.

“By necessity, we didn’t want to ask if our team would be willing to work without getting a paycheck,” Andrew said. “That wouldn’t be fair to them. We couldn’t put on a big day like this without having our staff involved.”

Donut demand is expected to be high during the fundraising event, Andrew said.

“We expect it to be pretty busy on Thursday,” Andrew said. “This is the first time we’ve done something on this scale and to see the positive feedback we’ve already gotten from the community leads me to believe that it’s going to be a pretty big day.”

The following nonprofits will receive Groovy Donuts proceeds from Nov. 30:

  • Child and Family Charities
  • Junior Achievement of Mid Michigan
  • Dollars 4 Dyslexia
  • Project FISH
  • KCS Angels

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