Skip navigation

Social Responsibility from the Heart

The American Heart Association is the first meeting group to participate in the Raleigh Convention Center’s new Share Your Meal program.

You could forgive the Raleigh Convention Center if it wanted to rest on its sustainability laurels. After all, the LEED Silver-certified building has a 40 percent landfill-diversion rate, 2,000 solar panels on the roof, beehives in the garden, more than 50 vegan items on the catering menu, an HVAC system that uses sustainably harvested plants instead of harsh chemicals to treat the water, and the list goes on—and continues to grow.

RaleighCC.pngThe convention center (in photo) recently rolled out its newest initiative, “Share Your Meal,” which gives back to the community and challenges event clients to do so as well. The idea is a simple one: groups using the center can buy extra meals that they don’t actually receive. Instead, the value of those meals is matched by the Raleigh Convention & Performing Arts Complex and its caterer, Sodexo Live!, and the total amount goes to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina.

For the planners of the American Heart Association’s Heart Ball held March 11 at the convention center, the decision to participate was an easy one.

“The American Heart Association is truly honored to be the first organization to participate in the ‘Share Your Meal’ program,” said Anne Miller, regional executive director in the Triangle and Eastern N.C. for the American Heart Association. “Sadly, it is estimated that about one in seven households in the Triangle [region] experience food insecurity. The American Heart Association believes in the right to healthy food for all people to live their best lives.”

The donation from the Heart Ball purchased 6,000 pounds of produce for to the food bank, which included about 2,250 local sweet potatoes, almost 500 large local cabbage, about 1,800 tomatillos, 2,250 Roma tomatoes, 1,800 jalapeño peppers, and 60 cases of strawberries. Approximately 500 families North Carolina families benefited.

“There’s no question that our donations make a difference,” said Kerry Painter, director/general manager of the Raleigh Convention + Performing Arts Complex. “We hope others will join the American Heart Association in choosing to share their meals.”

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.