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ST. LOUIS – After helping a Washington State couple adopt a 14-year-old girl from South America last year, White Castle has since donated $10,000 to the Dave Thomas Dave Foundation for Adoption.

The adoption organization was founded by Dave Thomas, founder of Wendy’s. Both fast-food chains, White Castle and Wendy’s, have a long history of supporting local and national causes, according to a press release.

“We’ve always had a great respect for the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption and its commitment to finding forever homes for children in foster care,” said Jamie Richardson, vice president at White Castle.

“We’re honored to demonstrate our support for this important cause with a financial contribution.” 

Jana Cruz won a trip to Belgium in 2019 as part of White Castle’s campaign to promote its breakfast waffles. However, COVID-19 and her work schedule delayed the trip for her and her husband Sergio.

Meanwhile, the couple had begun the process to adopt a girl from Colombia in June 2020 and were planning a trip to Colombia to finalize the adoption. Cruz explained their situation to White Castle and the couple was offered to switch the trip to Belgium with Colombia, according to the press release.

“We are incredibly grateful for what White Castle did to help with our trip to Colombia to complete our adoption,” Jana Cruz said. 

“We were having yard sales, selling crafts, and raffling items to help bridge the gap between what we had saved and what we needed. Having this trip paid for was absolutely beyond what we could have imagined.”

In September 2021, along with their four-year-old son Adrian, the Cruz family flew to Bogotá, the capital of Colombia, where they finalized the adoption of 14-year-old Natalie. After weeks of paperwork, securing a passport and visa for Natalie, the family made it home in mid-October, according to the press release.

“When we learned that Jana and Sergio were in the process of adopting their daughter, it was an easy decision to swap the Belgium trip for a trip to Colombia,” Richardson said.

“As a family-owned business, we have a genuine appreciation for family. That love of family sits at the core of everything we do. That’s why we were honored to be a part of the Cruz’ family journey and to support an amazing organization like the Dave Thomas Foundation.”