News Release
 December 2, 2020
CONTACT: Kathy Sautter
716 635 5577

Grocery chain continues to give back to local schools amid pandemic

WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. – Today, Tops Friendly Markets announced that it has donated more than $1.1 million dollars, yet another milestone for the grocery chain as it continues on its ninth year of its Tops in Education program. Last year over 1,000 schools participated in the program which has been in place since 2012. During the 2019-2020 school year alone the program raised over $161,000 for local schools, surpassing the previous year’s totals.

“As we at Tops strive to help eradicate hunger and improve the quality of life for children we are happy to announce that Tops has donated more than $1.1 million dollars to local K-12 schools over the past eight years, through Tops in Education, said Kathleen Allen, senior manager of community relations for the company. “This program provides a great value for our customers while helping to provide funding for educational needs in the communities we serve.”

With the onset of COVID-19 hitting early during the 2020 part of the school year, now more than ever it is important for funding to continue to be raised for our local schools who are actively looking for new and creative ways to connect with their students and source supplies.

To respect social distancing, check presentations were not conducted this year, however funds were still allocated to all participating schools. Tops would like to recognize the five largest benefactors from the 2019-2020 program which include: • Warsaw Elementary-Tiger Support Network - $5,697.95 • Newfane Elementary School - $3,442.40 • St. Amelia School – $2,365.33 • Tonawanda Central PTSA – Fletcher – $1,998.46 • Holland Elementary PTO - $1,478.62 As educators shift how to deliver programming, they also have needed to be creative in how they are using the valuable Tops in Education funds in light of COVID.

At Warsaw Elementary School, Tops in Education coordinator, Kelly Ashcraft, told Tops coordinators that they purchased sanitation items for the students, school supplies for families that couldn't afford them, and are hoping to start an early literacy program (pending approval) for birth to K for every family in the Warsaw town border. This would not be possible without the help of Tops in Education funding. “While in the past we have used funds from TIE to host our VIP Dance, as well as the many other events that we typically host, that is just not possible this year,” said Kelly. “We are instead finding new ways to support and promote family fun. In the next 10 days, all students will receive a wooden ornament to decorate with a Christmas movie theme. Kids can "enter" them in to win a prize where we will vote through Facebook. We just wanted to create something easy and cute that families can do together.”

“In Newfane we have a mix of both remote and in school learning and the Tops in Education funding has really been beneficial for our students for virtual events, supplies, and special events in the school,” said Tops in Education Coordinator, Virginia Bower.

Tops in Education for the 2020-2021 school year is underway and with it we want to remind participants of some key program elements including: • Households that were previously registered for the program during the 2019-2020 school year will not be required to re-register and will automatically be rolled over into the new school year. That’s one less thing to check off on your to-do list!

• If you are not already enrolled in the program, signing up is easy. Simply register your Tops BonusPlus card at Shoppers can designate up to three schools in grades K-12 to receive funds from the program during the 2020-2021 school year (September 1, 2020 - May 31, 2021). Schools interested in registering or learning more about how to promote the program at their school can also find helpful tools on the website.

• IT’S EASY TO EARN! When you purchase TOPS Brand, Full Circle™, TopCare®, Tippy Toes™, Simply Done™, That's Smart, or Best Yet products* with your registered Tops BonusPlus®, Tops contributes up to 5% of the purchase to the school(s) of your choice (grades K-12). # # #

About Tops Friendly Markets Tops Markets, LLC is headquartered in Williamsville, NY and operates 157 full-service supermarkets with five additional franchise stores and is the largest private, for-profit employer in Western New York. As a leading grocery retailer in New York, northern Pennsylvania, and western Vermont, and with the support of 14,500 associates, our core mission is to help our communities flourish. We support programs that seek to eradicate hunger and disease; promote the education of our youth; and to ensure we reduce environmental waste and energy consumption while providing our customers with sustainably sourced, high quality products. For more information, visit


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