On Friday, June 1, 2018, we will celebrate the goodness of donuts! But did you know that National Donut Day actually has its roots in doing good?
The Salvation Army in Chicago celebrated the first National Donut Day in 1938 to help those in need during the Great Depression and to commemorate the work of the “Donut Lassies,” who served donuts to soldiers during World War I.
In 1917, The Salvation Army began a mission to provide spiritual and emotional support for U.S. soldiers fighting in France during World War I. About 250 Salvation Army volunteers traveled overseas and set up small huts near the front lines where they could give soldiers clothes, supplies and, of course, baked goods.
Despite discovering that serving baked goods would be difficult considering the conditions of the huts and the limited rations, two officers – Ensign Margaret Sheldon and Adjutant Helen Purviance – began frying donuts in a small pan. (See original donut recipe below!) These tasty treats boosted morale and won the hearts of many soldiers.
Nicknamed “Donut Lassies,” the women who served donuts to troops are often credited with popularizing the donut in the United States when troops (nicknamed “doughboys”) returned home from war.
The donut now serves as a symbol of the comfort that The Salvation Army provides to those in need, through its many social services programs. The Salvation Army still serves donuts, in addition to providing warm meals and hydration, to those in need during times of disaster.
To commemorate the day, The Salvation Army Austin, with support from Krispy Kreme, will be delivering donuts on Friday, June 1, to first responders and veterans at various locations in Austin, Round Rock, Georgetown, Liberty Hill and Cedar Park, along with distributing donuts to donut lovers at our local Salvation Army Family Stores, starting at 10 am. Stop by for a donut and some great deals at the Salvation Army Family Stores locations: 4216 S. Congress Avenue — 8801 B Research Boulevard — 601 W. Louis Henna Boulevard, Round Rock — 13530 N Hwy 183.
See Media Kit HERE including historical images, media alert, fact sheet and infographic.
Media contact: Jan Gunter, 512-634-5910 or Jan.Gunter@uss.salvationarmy.org