“A couple of years into [owning the company], I kind of made a rule in my head that if the store made more than X amount of profit, then I would donate 10 percent of it,” says Sue Rogers, owner of Oregon Hot Tub. “I really believe that every American has the right to food and an education.”
Rogers makes most of her donations through the company’s corporate name, Apposta, and doesn’t typically advertise any of its giving.
She supports DonorsChoose.com, a site where teachers from across the country post supplies and projects they need for their classrooms, and donors can pick and choose which to support. Rogers focuses on teachers from low-income and inner cities in the area. Some of the projects she’s supported are a microphone to do morning announcements, lots of books and helping new teachers buy supplies and decorations for their rooms.
One of Rogers favorite DonorsChoose projects was wellness related — a school needed new weights and to fix its track. “They wanted to fill the holes in on the track so it wouldn’t have all these puddles — they wanted gravel,” Rogers says. It was near the end of the donation period for this particular project and it looked like it was going to fail. It was one of the bigger projects she’s supported, about $3,000. “That particular month I was able to just buy it out.”
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Additionally Oregon Hot Tubs supports the Oregon Food Bank in Oregon and Food Lifeline in Seattle. “Both groups are well organized and focus on providing nutritious food to all,” Rogers says.
In fact, the Oregon Food Bank’s Oregon Tuna Classic made Rogers break her ‘no advertising’ rule. Oregon Hot Tub was a sponsor of the fishing tournament in August; the tuna caught during the tournament is then canned and donated to food banks across the state. This year the tournament caught 4,850 pounds of tuna, and the boat Oregon Hot Tub sponsored contributed 50 pounds.
“That’s not my normal style,” Rogers says. “But I did it because it was the food bank. It was really fun.”