In an age when community involvement and volunteering have become core values of many businesses, the laundry industry is no different. From the LaundryCares Foundation, founded by the Coin Laundry Association in 2006, to the grassroots efforts of many locally owned laundromats, social responsibility within the community is an increasing priority.

Whether you operate a large-scale commercial laundry or a self-service laundromat, there are plenty of ways to make a difference.

  • Sponsor a local road race or a youth sports team.
  • Contribute to a worthwhile project such as the Wounded Warriors.
  • Create a promotional campaign that lets your community know that a percentage of profits on one day per month will be donated to a local charity.

The only limit, as the saying goes, is your imagination.

Making an Impact
There are also less obvious, but just as impactful, ways to show your community that you care. You could create a program that does laundry for the disabled and the homeless, who need only to place their clothes in a bag at a shelter or their home for a laundromat employee to retrieve and then return with the cleaned items.

A commercial business could encourage employees to volunteer in a community service activity, and perhaps even offer a paid day off each quarter as incentive.

A Place to Learn
Self-service laundromats are becoming more than spaces to idly pass time while waiting to hear the signal that your clothes are dry. Customers spend on average 2½ hours at a self-service laundromat waiting for their clothes to be washed and dried. That’s a strain on working families, who often must bring their young children along.

But a move is afoot to turn what was wasted time into a more productive experience that goes far beyond clean clothes. Last fall, the Coin Laundry Association partnered with Libraries Without Borders and the Clinton Foundation to create learning spaces in laundromats, even providing books and bringing in librarians to guide the children.

Some laundromat owners are providing toys, puppets, blocks, literacy-themed coloring pages and even a story time for younger kids who are forced to tag along on laundry day. Thanks to these inventive options, laundry time can be a way to boost learning and literacy.

What about You?
At Yankee Equipment Systems, we are constantly on the lookout for ways to give back to our community. We would love to hear the ways you are becoming more involved in your community.

These days, commercial and self-service laundromats are showing that they can be so much more to their community than solely a vehicle for clean clothes.