CONCORD, N.C. – It all started with a simple tweet.
Now, three weeks later, approximately $160,000 is headed to Blessings in a Backpack on behalf of The Dale Jr. Foundation.
Blessings in a Backpack -- a national, non-profit organization that packs food for school children who are at risk of going hungry on the weekends -- was the beneficiary Earnhardt chose once his banana-and-mayonnaise sandwich began going viral.
After realizing how much attention the sandwich was getting, the driver came up with an idea to use it to do something positive. He and his teams at JR Motorsports and The Dale Jr. Foundation created a website called DaleJrSandwich.com where people could donate money that would benefit Blessings in a Backpack.
He pledged to match up to $50,000 – a total Hellmann’s agreed to match as well.
In addition, tracks including Bristol and Richmond sold the sandwich to help raise the funds even higher.
“The response from the fans as far as donations has been amazing,” Earnhardt said. “That is a great thing.”
When it was all said and done, the $100,000 from Earnhardt and Hellmann’s was added to $59,935.33 raised through donations and sales of the sandwich itself.
Blessings in a Backpack calculated that the money would help more than 60,000 children have hunger-free weekends.
“It’s something we can be very excited about,” Earnhardt said, “and very happy about.”