“So these kids can feel normal, even if it’s only for one week out of the year,” he says. “When you hear them say that’s what this means to them, how can you not try to do something to help?”
The kids, in this case, are children who struggle with muscle disorders, often to the point of being restricted to wheelchairs. And the week is the time they get to spend at Camp Fairlee in Chestertown, Maryland.
Jerry’s Toyota raises money to help children who struggle with muscle disorders to experience what it’s like to “feel normal,” says the dealership’s Bill Bolander.
Jerry’s Toyota first rallied around this cause in 2014. The MDA said it could organize a golf tournament, but needed the dealership’s assistance lining up sponsors. Bolander and his colleagues rose to the challenge, convincing business partners, suppliers and others to purchase foursomes for $1,500 to $1,850 each. They also made a new Toyota vehicle available should one of the entrants make a hole-in-one. And they rounded up other prizes, such as tickets to Baltimore Ravens football games, to boost raffle ticket sales.
All told, Jerry’s Toyota has helped raise more than $160,000 via the four golf tournaments held thus far, including a record $60,000 this year alone. Proceeds from the dealership’s annual car show also go to the MDA, increasing its total giving to more than $170,000.
“Jerry’s Toyota does an amazing job creating excitement for the tournaments,” Alford says. “We serve over 1,500 families. So this money, all of which stays local, has a huge impact. We couldn’t be more thrilled to partner with them.”