Running for joy—and money

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In January of 2017, JoyRun was introduced to the Utah State University campus. The app was created as a community-based delivery system. From grocery store trips to late night runs to fast food restaurants, Logan residents can order or deliver food items via the JoyRun app.

According to its website, the California-based app is “a peer-to-peer platform that makes group deliveries for the community, by the community, social, affordable and rewarding.”

“One of the biggest (changes the app has made throughout the year) is that the app is more self-sustaining and has organic runners. It is not all on the shoulders of employees to complete runs and many more people know who we are,” said Alex Eldredge, an on-campus employee for JoyRun.

When the app was first introduced, Eldredge and other employees were responsible for completing the orders that were submitted through the app. Eldredge and his team members were accountable for making sure there was a runner available at all times of day.

Recently, the app has grown in success and community members are able to complete the orders. Many students use the app to make a few extra dollars when they are getting food for themselves or have spare time.

“I can just sit at home and pay a few extra dollars to get whatever I want,” said Pepper Eames, a user and employee of JoyRun. “On the employee side, it gives me an opportunity to get out and talk to new people. It is a challenge.”

The app offers a user-friendly “Runners Club” that gives those who sign up the opportunity to make more money faster. It shows tips on how to make bonuses that are offered and will send notifications to the users’ phone when orders are in high demand. This allows those who participate in the Runners Club to become more aware of the activity on the app. The club is free to sign up for and is offered to anyone in the app’s demographic region.

In addition to the Runners Club, JoyRun offers “JoyBucks.” This portion of the app allows users to send messages, usually to parents, asking for money to be inserted into their account. This allows others to insert money into user’s accounts, who then use the money to order through JoyRun. Anyone who is connected to the user’s account can send the user money.

JoyRun also partners with nationwide and community programs and restaurants. Eldredge’s favorite has been the app’s sponsorship of Best Buddies, an organization that provides peer and community opportunities to those who struggle with intellectual and developmental disabilities. JoyRun has been able to participate in three of their events so far this year, including a trunk-or-treat and a carnival. Eldredge believes this has given JoyRun a public presence as well as allowed the app to give back to the community.

Students can find JoyRun employees set up around Utah State’s campus, often handing out free items to those who download the app. JoyRun also offers pre-order presentations for clubs and organizations. Those who participate in these presentations will often receive a free meal for downloading the app at the time of the event. JoyRun is continually finding new ways to spread the joy of food and money combined.

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