Skip to main content

Inmates at MN jail use 'My Coke Rewards' program to donate to charity

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Inmates at a Minnesota jail donated nearly $200 to charity last year using the "My Coke Rewards" program.

It was part of a jailhouse project as a way to help teach that giving is more important than receiving, a post on the Isanti County Sheriff's Office Facebook page explains, and to give those in jail the chance to "make a positive impression while living in a tough situation."

The Isanti County Jail implemented the program in January 2015, where inmates drop the caps of their Coca-Cola products (some inmates – depending on their jail classification and behavior – can purchase pop with their own money), then a staff member at the jail enters the code on the cap into the jail's "My Coke Rewards" account, the sheriff's office says.

Then, every three months, inmates would vote on a charity where they'd donate the money.

By the end of the year, they collected 12,730 points, totaling $190.95 – and every cent was donated to St. Judes Children's Research Hospital. (Each time the jail held a vote, St. Judes was the winner.)

It may not be much money – but in 2014, those caps were just thrown in the trash, Sgt. Eric Nelson wrote in an editorial published by Isanti County News.

The sheriff's office hopes to donate even more money this year, and has also asked the community to save their Coke caps to make a donation to charity "instead of tossing away the opportunity to make a positive impact," the Facebook post notes.

The community can also bring their Coke caps to the jail and staff will enter the codes through their rewards account, a comment on Facebook notes.

Next Up

Brave New Comedy Workshop in downtown Minneapolis.

Brave New Workshop cancels shows due to COVID-19 cases

The shows were scheduled for Friday and Saturday at the Brave New Workshop Comedy Theatre.

Austin Retterath

Body of missing U of M student found in Mississippi River

Austin Retterath was last seen alive in the morning hours of May 8.

"Love" mural seen in St. Paul.

Summer mural events to bring together community, shine light on MN artists

The 2022 Chroma Zone Mural & Art Festival will take place this weekend in St. Paul's Creative Enterprise Zone, with ensuing events happening this summer.


Gallery: Remodeled lakeside home in Prior Lake on market for $2.8M

It offers privacy at the end of a dead-end road fronting onto Lower Prior Lake.

golden valley police department

Carjacking outside ice arena in Golden Valley under investigation

Golden Valley PD confirmed it received a report of a carjacking Monday evening.


Signs that MN Legislature could move to loosen liquor laws

A provision was approved by a legislature committee on Thursday but still awaits a final decision from the House and Senate.

US Bank Stadium

U.S. Bank Stadium looking to hire 400 part-time workers

A hiring fair will be held for the positions.

Screen Shot 2022-05-20 at 8.55.56 AM

Officials looking for man last seen leaving Hudson home

David Mckay, 67, was last seen in Hudson Thursday morning.


'Hyper-contagious' BA.4, BA.5 COVID variants confirmed in MN

Omicron continues to evolve into a more transmissible virus.

covid-19, coronavirus

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Friday, May 20

The latest data shows there are 442 people with COVID hospitalized in Minnesota.


Family sues Olmsted County over jail inmate's death

The lawsuit claims jail staff prescribed a lethal dose of methadone for Cody Laganiere in 2010. The coroner's report found that the methadone was one of the factors that contributed to an accidental death. In the last year Olmsted County has settled three wrongful death lawsuits involving jail inmates.