ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- When Candle Crest owners Judy and Dave Bieck debuted their Rockford Candle “Positivity” in October, they did so to prove positivity could spread faster than unfavorable publicity in the region.
This week, the couple will prove themselves right. The Biecks met with volunteers, staff and Rock River Valley Pantry Executive Director Kim Adams-Bakke on Wednesday to help Rockford’s image grow beyond negative labels. 50% of the net profit from each Rockford Candle sold from October to February was donated to the area pantry, totaling to a whopping $1,825 that will reach an estimated 2,100 families.
“Every dollar makes a difference when someone is hungry,” Adams-Bakke said, noting the pantry has incredible buying power, since it buys by the pallet. “It doesn’t matter how big or how small the donation is, it immediately provides food to people that are going hungry.”
The Rock River Valley Pantry serves more than 7,100 people per month, 40 percent of which are children. Urgently needed foods include vegetables and canned fruits for the client’s food bags. The donation, made possible through the sale of the candles will allow the pantry to purchase over 9,521 cans of 15 oz. green beans.
“My goal, since the start, was to do something that’s 100 positive for Rockford,” Judy Bieck said. “This is just the start.”
The pineapple, bamboo and sage-scented candle is sold in 12oz jars and has been produced by the Rockford-based business since the fall to sell at area retailers for $15. Each quarter of the year, Candle Crest will select another not-for-profit organization to be the recipient of funds aimed to boost quality of life in the region.
Next up to benefit from the Rockford Candle’s sales is Carpenter’s Place, which “provides the tools necessary for rebuilding the lives of homeless adults” in the area.
Selfless acts can help others. That’s why Debbie Aiello and her sister Kat, stock the Rockford Candle at Roxy Carmichael, their 7-year-old shop on Alpine Road.
“Everybody loves them,” Aiello said. “It’s something positive to talk about. As soon as they are in, they are gone. If I order two dozen, we’ve already got 18 of them sold and they sell as fast as they come in. It’s something more; it’s such a good thing to be promoting something that is benefiting everyone.”
The Rockford Candle is good for organizations, but also good for local small businesses, said Skyler Davis. Davis, along with his wife Lauren, own Culture Shock, a clothing, gift and record shop in the Charles Street corridor.
“The Rockford Candle was our most requested local gift during the last season,” he said. “Especially for people who are dedicated to our community and want to give friends and family a piece of home as a gift.”