Company: Big Y Foods, Inc.
Program category: Neighborhood Health Improvement Programs


In 2011, Big Y’s celebrated its 75th Anniversary, and in an effort to demonstrate our store's support for our local communities Big Y's established a Community Service Day. All Big Y World Class Markets throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut, Store Support Center, and Distribution Centers coordinated an activity that would give back to their local communities. Many of our locations took this request a step further by committing to more than one volunteer day in various community locations. In that year, Big Y employee volunteers assisted 50 community- based organizations during the designated volunteer community days. Their efforts included working at animal shelters, cleaning road sides, helping the elderly, washing fire trucks, serving meals at shelters and community centers, and aiding organizations in fundraisers for cancer. As a result, these community days proved to be so successful that these volunteer days turned into an annual event.


Since the inception of Annual Community Service Days, Big Y has been a huge supporter by providing various resources that include: human capital, flexible working schedules, and leadership support. Communities have welcomed Big Y employees with open arms and an appreciation for the support they provide each year. Our employees have a history of responding to people in need through various initiatives such as: reading to school children, teaching mini workshops on modern technology (cell phones, tablets) in local senior centers, feeding the homeless, disaster relief campaigns, and various philanthropic community support.


Big Y is a family owned and family oriented retail food company with a goal of exceeding our customers’ expectations by constantly seeking better ways to create World Class Service and value. We strongly believe that one way to accomplish this goal is through helping to strengthen our communities where we live and work.

Goals of Community Service Days: 

  • Increase employee volunteerism 
  • Increase exposure to our diverse communities
  • Build community relationships

By achieving these goals, Big Y employees are able to:

  • Network and enhance their community and employee engagement 
  • Address a need in the community 

In addition, the volunteer days supports the Big Y Vision: “As knowledgeable and caring fellow Big Y employees, we work together with our customers, our colleagues, and our communities to provide exceptional value and a personal shopping experience that makes daily life easier, more healthful and enjoyable.”


The community at large benefits from the volunteerism and the support our Big Y employees provide each year. On average, we impact over 70 communities and over 50 non-profit organizations throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut. In 2011, we began with 612 employee volunteers that completed 1,791 volunteer hours. Since its inception, 2,340 Big Y employees have volunteered and completed 7,807 volunteer hours.


According to Donald D’Amour, CEO, "We have an over 80 year history that has embraced a culture of caring and connecting with the communities we serve. We are extremely grateful to all the employees who continue to volunteer their time and efforts to help others."

Our Community Service Days began as a one year initiative and has turned into an annual event that has grown in size and impact. Big Y is proud to be a community business partner and truly appreciates how these volunteer opportunities add value in our local communities and help to build long lasting community relationships. A few quotes from community organizations appreciation of support: 

Friends of the Homeless (Facebook post) reads: "Big Y World Class Market served All WEEK in our Resource Center. Thank you for making a big impression on our guests and for being a big help to our staff... Big Y is world class community partner!"

Carol McCormick (Co-Chair for Green Up/Clean Up Event, (Guilford CT), says, “This is Big Y’s second year participating in Clean Up Day. We would like to encourage other Guilford businesses to become partners with us and participate in Clean Up Day.” 

Jennifer Kinsman (Hap Housing Donor Relations Manager), says, “Thank you for being part of an effort that has assisted hundreds and hundreds of formerly homeless families over the past two years.”