Friday, January 25, 2008

Newport Aquarium's WAVE Foundation Awards Grant to Operation Whale Shark

NEW YORK CITY — WAVE Foundation of Kentucky’s Newport Aquarium has awarded $6,200 to Operation Whale Shark, a study conducted by the Shark Research Institute (SRI). The grant, together with funds from the World Wildlife Fund, is helping SRI scientists identify the size, structure, and habits of the population of whale sharks that aggregate in Tanzanian waters. As scientists learn where whale sharks travel they are able to concentrate conservation efforts in areas where these ocean giants are at greatest risk.

Visitors to the Newport Aquarium donated funds to the aquarium’s Dollars for Conservation Campaign, which is administered by the WAVE Foundation.

SRI’s Operation Whale Shark, initiated in 1993, is the oldest and largest whale shark study in the world. SRI field researchers have placed ID tags on hundreds of the “gentle giants” and photographs of many of the sharks are logged in the Ecocean database, a photo-catalogue that uses the unique pattern of spots and stripes of individual animals as identifiers. In addition, SRI has utilized satellite telemetry to monitor the travels of whale sharks in the Caribbean Sea, and the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans.

“SRI now has almost the entire Mafia Island population of whale sharks identified and marked,” says SRI marine biologist Matt Potenski. “This research is enabling development of sustainable tourism and giving living whale sharks sufficient value to render their harvest uneconomical and undesirable. Local stewardship and legal protection has created a refuge for whale sharks.”

Visitors to the Newport Aquarium donated funds to the aquarium’s Dollars for Conservation Campaign, which is administered by the WAVE Foundation.

Operation Whale Shark receives no government funding and relies on continued public, private, and corporate support to continue its research and conservation efforts around the world.

The WAVE Foundation, designated as a 501(c) 3 organization, is an education foundation located at the Newport Aquarium (Newport, Kentucky). The foundation’s mission is to excite, engage and educate the public about the wonders of aquatic life and the importance of conservation. The WAVE acronym stands for Welfare of Aquatic Animals and Natural Resources, Advocate for Conservation, Volunteer Pursuits and Educational Opportunities.

Newport Aquarium showcases thousands of animals from around the world in a million gallons of water. It is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), a leader in global wildlife conservation. The aquarium is open to the public 365 days a year and is located only two minutes from downtown Cincinnati at Newport on the Levee.

SRI, WWF and the WAVE Foundation are all driving forces in whale shark study and management in the Mafia Island area and are really doing a tremendous job in helping to promote the whale shark as a living resource. Since Operation Whale Shark relies on grants and donations to further its work, this grant is critical.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

ArcelorMittal and National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Announce Great Lakes Restoration Program

CHICAGO — ArcelorMittal and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation announced the ArcelorMittal Great Lakes Restoration Program yesterday. The new grant program is funded by a $2.1 million donation from the ArcelorMittal USA Foundation that will be matched by a $3 million investment by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and federal agency partners including: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The contributions will then be leveraged by grantees to enable a total on-the-ground impact of $9 million throughout the Great Lakes watershed.

The ArcelorMittal Great Lakes Restoration Program is an important step towards restoring the ecological integrity of the Great Lakes Basin. The program is designed to address the habitat and ecosystem restoration goals developed through the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration. The Regional Collaboration, created by a Presidential Executive Order, is a wide-ranging, public-private cooperative effort to design and implement a strategy for the restoration, protection, and sustainable use of the Great Lakes. Specifically, ArcelorMittal funds will support wetland protection and restoration across the Great Lakes Region, including parts of Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Ohio and Canada.

"A vibrant, sustainable Great Lakes is important to our business and our community. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to lead the effort in improving the fish and wildlife habitat in the Great Lakes," said Lou Schorsch, president and CEO, ArcelorMittal Flat Carbon Americas. "Our USA Foundation is committed to supporting sustainability through the focus areas of education, the environment and support of healthy and safe communities where our employees and customers work and live."

A nonprofit established by Congress in 1984, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) sustains, restores and enhances the nation's fish, wildlife, plants, and habitats. The Foundation creates partnerships between the public and private sectors to strategically invest in conservation and the sustainable use of natural resources. Since its establishment, NFWF has awarded nearly 9,500 grants to over 3,000 organizations in the United States and abroad and leveraged – with its partners – more than $400 million in federal funds into over $1.3 billion for conservation.

ArcelorMittal is the world's number one steel company, with 320,000 employees in more than 60 countries. The company brings together the world's number one and number two steel companies, Arcelor and Mittal Steel. ArcelorMittal is the leader in all major global markets, including automotive, construction, household appliances and packaging, with leading R&D and technology, as well as sizeable captive supplies of raw materials and outstanding distribution networks.

The Great Lakes represent 10 percent of all fresh water globally. This program is an ideal partnership between the public and private sectors that will focus on a combination of economic and environmental goals to help restore and sustan the Great Lakes.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Nordstrom Celebrates Black History Month With Exclusive Compilation CD to Benefit Music Education Groups

SEATTLE — In celebration of Black History Month, Nordstrom will sell an exclusive CD entitled "Immortal Soul-Essential Recordings from the Golden Age" beginning in February. "Immortal Soul" is a handpicked compilation of soul and R&B tracks that capture the romance, heartbreak and sensuality of the genre. Together, the chosen tracks trace the evolution of rhythm and blues of the '50s into the soul of the '60s and beyond.

The Nordstrom-exclusive CD features tracks from Ray Charles, Aretha
Franklin, James Brown, Otis Redding and Etta James, as well as a track
recorded exclusively for the album by Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings. The
CD will be available in all Nordstrom stores and online at Nordstrom.com
beginning Feb. 1 for $24.95.

All after-cost proceeds from the sale of "Immortal Soul" will benefit
three music education programs for youth in underserved communities. The
benefiting organizations are Opus 118 Harlem School of Music in New York,
Merit School of Music in Chicago and Scholarship Audition Performance
Academy in Los Angeles.

"We are honored to celebrate Black History Month through music with
this exclusive CD," said Amelia Ransom Letcher, divisional vice president
and corporate diversity affairs director for Nordstrom. "We are especially
thrilled to partner with three incredible schools that celebrate the
importance of music in our communities."

Nordstrom, Inc. is one of the nation's leading fashion specialty
retailers, with 156 stores located in 28 states. Founded in 1901 as a shoe
store in Seattle, today Nordstrom operates 101 full-line stores, 50
Nordstrom Racks, two Jeffrey boutiques, one freestanding shoe store and two
clearance stores.

The CD not only explores important music genres, but also serves as a lasty celebration of Black History Month. It's a fine idea to share proceeds from the sale of these CDs with three fantastic and deserving music education programs in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York so a new generation of musicians can benefit too.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Sizzler Celebrates 50th Anniversary with One-Cent Steak Dinners & $50,000 Children's Miracle Network Fund Drive

CULVER CITY, Calif. — The last time Sizzler offered a steak dinner for a penny, people lined up for hours. That was in 1959 when the steak chain celebrated its first anniversary.

Now Sizzler is doing it again as it commemorates its 50th anniversary. For two days only -- Jan. 21 and 22 -- Sizzler restaurants throughout California are thanking customers with the same offer: buy an eight-ounce steak dinner at regular price and get a second one for a penny.

Sizzler also is kicking off a $50,000 fundraising campaign for Children’s Miracle Network, which has nine member hospitals in California. For every anniversary steak dinner steak sold Jan. 21-22, Sizzler will make a contribution to Children's Miracle Network. Sizzler has committed to raising $50,000 during its anniversary year for the organization

"Sizzler's dedication to giving back to the communities they serve is
overwhelming. This fundraising effort will help make miracles happen for
sick and injured children throughout California," said Denise Bayles,
director of Children's Miracle Network for Children's Hospital Los Angeles.
"Sizzler is truly an example of an exemplary corporate citizen."

The first Sizzler opened in a converted trailer in Culver City in
January 1958. Today, the popular family steak restaurant can be found in 17
U.S. states, Puerto Rico, Australia, China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan
and Thailand.

Children's Miracle Network is a non-profit organization dedicated to
saving and improving the lives of children by raising funds for children's
hospitals. Each year the 170 Children's Miracle Network hospitals provide
the finest medical care, life-saving research and preventative education to
help millions of kids overcome diseases and injuries of every kind.

This donation drive is a smart way for Sizzler to promote its 50th anniversary and be a good corporate citizen. It's especially nice to see the company supporting a charity that serves children in the communities that Sizzler also serves.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Bakers Square Helps Make-A-Wish Foundation Grant Wishes on National Pie Day

DENVER, Colo. — Bakers Square restaurants will donate 50 percent of sales from all whole pies sold on National Pie Day (Jan. 23) to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, with a minimum donation of $25,000. Restaurant guests can also receive a free slice of the pie of their choice that day at any Bakers Square location.

“Baking award-winning pies has been a part of our heritage for more than twenty years," said Ken Keymer, CEO of VICORP Restaurants, Inc., which owns Bakers Square restaurants. "It's our hope that on this day that celebrates a part of American culture, we can demonstrate our commitment to helping others, like the children involved in the Make-A-Wish Foundation. We're honored to help make their 'pie in the sky' wishes come true."

With the help of donors and more than 25,000 volunteers, the Make-A-Wish Foundation grants a wish every 40 minutes and has granted more than 161,000 wishes in the United States since its inception.

Bakers Square has been serving award-winning pie since 1983. In 2007, it won 23 blue ribbons at the American Pie Council's National Pie Championship. French Silk continues to be the restaurants' most popular pie. In fact, Bakers Square sells more than 532,000 French Silk pies annually.

Headquartered in Denver, VICORP Restaurants, Inc. operates two restaurant concepts under well-recognized brands, Bakers Square and Village Inn. Founded in 1958, VICORP has 403 restaurants in 25 states, consisting of 310 company-operated restaurants and 93 franchised restaurants. Bakers Square is synonymous with award-winning pies and also offers distinct, high-quality menu items for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Known for its strong breakfast heritage, Village Inn has been serving its signature breakfast items like one-of-a-kind skillet dishes and made-from-scratch pancakes for 50 years. Both Bakers Square and Village Inn guests are served The Best Pie in America(R) including dozens of varieties of premium, multi-layer specialty pies baked by VICOM, VICORP's bakery division. In 2007, Bakers Square and Village Inn won 32 combined blue ribbons at the American Pie Council's National Pie Championships.

The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Born in 1980 when a group of caring volunteers helped a young boy fulfill his dream of becoming a police officer, the Foundation is now the largest wish-granting charity in the world, with 67 chapters in the United States and its territories. With the help of generous donors and more than 25,000 volunteers, the Make-A-Wish Foundation grants a wish every 40 minutes and has granted more than 161,000 wishes in the U.S. since inception.

This is an innovative way for Bakers Square to celebrate National Pie Day. Donating 50 percent of the sale of all whole pies sold on that day will give the Make-A-Wish Foundation much needed funds to grant the wishes of these brave children.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Allstate Foundation Launches ClicktoEmpower.com to Raise Funds for Domestic Violence Survivors

NORTHBROOK, Ill. — The Allstate Foundation and the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) Fund launched an e-mail campaign to bring people to ClicktoEmpower.com, a special Web site created to educate readers about the devastating impact of financial abuse and raise critical funding to support victims of domestic violence. For each person who visits ClicktoEmpower.com and clicks the "Click to Empower" button, $1 will be donated by The Allstate Foundation Domestic Violence Program to the Education and Job Training Assistance (EJTA) Fund, with a total contribution of up to $300,000. The EJTA Fund helps domestic violence survivors pursue long-term financial security by providing vital financial assistance for education, training and job-related expenses.

The Allstate Foundation takes a unique stance on the issue of domestic violence by focusing its efforts on providing tools that help survivors move toward economic independence. Experts report that economic control is a tactic commonly used by abusers to prevent their victims from leaving abusive situations. Abusers often block access to money and/or other financial resources including credit cards, bank accounts or the ability to work outside the home.

"Our goal is to help survivors achieve an economic independence that they may not realize was possible," said Jennifer Kuhn, domestic violence program manager, The Allstate Foundation.

A domestic violence survivor's ability to attain economic security is dependent upon the availability of:

• Social and economic supports, including child support, child care, transportation, and public benefits;

• Jobs that provide a living wage, and offer benefits as well as opportunities for career advancement;

• Education and job training programs, or other opportunities to gain the skills necessary to obtain and retain a job that pays a living wage.

The EJTAF was established by The Allstate Foundation Domestic Violence Program to channel small grants, up to $1,000 each, to adult domestic violence survivors to overcome the obstacles that prevent them from achieving their educational and professional goals. The EJTAF covers education, training and job-related expenses, including books supplies for school, job skills training, certification fees, tuition, registration fees, uniforms, child care, public transportation, and fees for computer access.

"With the Education and Job Training Assistance Fund, a little goes a long way. In many communities a $1,000 grant can help a survivor take a 10-week computer training course and pay for child care and transportation while in the course," said Sue Else, president, NNEDV Fund. "That's the difference between having to remain with an abuser to keep a roof over your children's head and having the opportunity to live a free, safe and successful life."

The National Network to End Domestic Violence Fund is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization that is focused on public education, training, and technical assistance to maintain and develop the professional expertise of domestic violence advocates. The NNEDV Fund strives to strengthen advocates as organizers and activists in the tradition of social change movements.

Established in 1952, The Allstate Foundation is an independent, charitable organization made possible by subsidiaries of The Allstate Corporation. Allstate and The Allstate Foundation sponsor community initiatives to promote safe and vital communities; tolerance, inclusion, and diversity; and economic empowerment. The Allstate Foundation believes in the financial potential of every individual and in helping America's families achieve their American dream.

It seems that economic advocacy is an integral part of many domestic violence victims' short-term and long-term independence and self-sufficiency, and this donation program addresses that unique niche need.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Motorola Foundation to Provide $4 Million in Innovation Generation Grants

In an effort to cultivate the skilled scientists and engineers needed to create tomorrow's breakthrough ideas, in 2008 the Motorola Foundation will provide $4 million in Innovation Generation Grants to organizations that engage U.S. K-12 students and teachers in innovation, science, technology, engineering and math.
Funding priority will be placed on pioneering programs that:

*Engage students and teachers in innovative, hands-on ways

*Teach innovation and creative problem-solving skills

*Focus on girls and underrepresented minorities

*Engage Motorola employees as volunteers

*Take place in communities where Motorola has an employee presence in Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania and Texas

*Demonstrate measurable outcomes

*Are less than two years old

Grant applicants may request up to $100,000. Select organizations may be asked to apply for larger grants. Grants will be for one year of project work, starting after June 2008. Any U.S. non-profit organization may apply. Schools and school districts may apply.

At least 25 percent of total grant dollars will support new programming that has been operating for less than two years and is not simply an expansion of an existing program.

Returning 2007 Innovation Generation Grant recipients must demonstrate that they have created new STEM partnerships with business, another non-profit organization or another foundation.

The deadline is March 1, 2008. Apply online.

In 2007, the Motorola' Foundation's Innovation Generation Grants supported more than 100 breakthrough programs that use innovative approaches to develop interest in innovation, science, technology, engineering and math. Of the recipient programs - ranging from after-school and summer science enrichment programs to activities that promote innovative technology use and teacher-training initiatives:

41 percent serve African American students
19 percent reach Hispanic youth
31 percent specifically target girls

The Motorola Foundation is the independent charitable and philanthropic arm of Motorola. With employees located around the world, Motorola seeks to benefit the communities where it operates. The company achieves this by making strategic grants, forging strong community partnerships, fostering innovation and engaging stakeholders. Motorola Foundation focuses its funding on education, especially innovation, science, technology, engineering and math programming.

These grants are strategically focused and are designed to inspire people and communities. The emphasis here is on the next generation of scientists and engineers who may be the innovators and pioneers of tomorrow's breakthroughs.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Alcoa Foundation Awards Grant to Fund Restoration of Oyster Reefs

CHARLESTON, S.C. — Alcoa announced that the Alcoa Foundation has awarded a $200,000 grant to the South Carolina Nature Conservancy to initiate a multi-year oyster restoration program. The program is part of The Nature Conservancy’s global mission to protect the Temperate Western Atlantic Coast, which extends from the Gulf of Maine to the Cape Canaveral, Fla.

The coast is critical habitat for migratory shorebirds such as Red Knots, raptors, waterfowl, and neotropical songbirds. However, significant areas of the coastline are threatened by development, habitat conversion and global climate change. Conserving ocean and coastal ecosystems will improve water quality, protect diverse marine habitat and benefit economies and livelihoods of coastal communities for generations to come.

"We are extremely grateful to Alcoa Foundation for its generosity," said Mark Robertson, from the SC Nature Conservancy. "Oysters have a unique role in tidal habitats, because they create living reefs that support not just themselves but some 130 other species. With this grant we can increase the number of oysters in South Carolina waters, builds oyster reefs to decrease erosion along salt marsh, and boosts recycling of oyster shells cast off by restaurants, seafood suppliers and the public."

With the Alcoa Foundation grant, the SC Nature Conservancy will start a new restoration program that benefits commercial and recreational fisherman, coastal citizens, and the tourism industry by building and protecting oyster reefs through science, market-based strategies, restoration and resilient habitat protection.

It has been estimated that only seven percent of South Carolina’s oyster shells are recycled through existing programs. Finding ways to put cast-off shells back into reefs is one part of the program. Other plans include prioritizing restoration sites through analysis of current and historic oyster locations, habitat parameters and ownership/leasing status.

Alcoa Foundation is a separately constituted nonprofit U.S. corporate foundation with assets of approximately $534 million. Its mission is to actively invest in the quality of life in Alcoa communities worldwide. Throughout its history, the Foundation has been a source of positive community change and enhancement, with nearly $437 million invested since 1952.

The Nature Conservancy is a leading international, nonprofit organization that preserves plants, animals and natural communities representing the diversity of life on Earth by protecting the lands and waters they need to survive. To date, the Conservancy and its more than one million members have been responsible for the protection of more than 15 million acres in the United States and have helped preserve more than 102 million acres in Latin America, the Caribbean, Asia and the Pacific.

The success of this program will play a critical role in ensuring a healthy coastline in the years ahead and for future generations. Alcoa is a strong supporter of the Nature Conservancy and this grant is a fine example of corporate responsibility.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Craftmatic Adjustable Beds and Coalition to Salute America's Heroes to Donate Beds to Wounded Troops

CRESTLINE, Calif. — Sgt. John Radell, U.S. Army (Ret.) was caught in an RPG attack in Iraq in July 2003 and sustained shrapnel to his right leg. Since then, getting a good night’s sleep has been a battle all in its own.

When he and his wife learned that they would be the first recipients of a free-of-charge Craftmatic Adjustable Bed, they were ecstatic to think that John might be able to sleep through the night.

The Craftmatic Adjustable Bed Company, the nation’s premier maker of quality comfort adjustable beds, and the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes (CSAH), the leading nongovernmental provider of emergency financial aid to severely wounded veterans from the War on Terror, have teamed up to give away one bed a week in 2008 to severely wounded veterans. CSAH identifies deserving troops and Craftmatic sends them a bed as a way of showing appreciation for their sacrifice.

“Our company is pleased to do our part to honor the brave service that our troops have provided for our country,” said Eric Kraftsow, a representative for Craftmatic. “We hope that the Radells get some much deserved rest thanks to their new Craftmatic Adjustable Bed.”

Radell was first told that he was a winner at the Road to Recovery Conference and Tribute, the nation’s largest gathering of severely wounded troops organized by CSAH and held in December in Orlando, FL.

The Craftmatic Adjustable Bed Company (Craftmatic Organization, Inc.) first began marketing electrically adjustable beds specifically designed for use in the world's bedrooms over 30 years ago. Today, Craftmatic company-owned direct sales operations and independent distributors service all of the United States, the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, the Caribbean and Australia. Over 1,000,000 Craftmatic Adjustable Beds are now in use in customer bedrooms around the world.

The Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes (CSAH) is a 501 (c)(3), non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to helping the severely wounded veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and their families rebuild their lives. The organization is the top nongovernmental association helping wounded troops from Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom and since its 2004 inception, has assisted over 4,000 troops. Over $5 million dollars has been distributed to date to prevent car repossessions and utility shut-offs while trips to sporting events, entertainment parks, and shows help service members boost morale, break the boredom of the routine of recuperation and help reintegrate wounded troops into civilian life. The annual all expense paid Road to Recovery Conference provides seminars, career counseling, job fairs, evaluations, and inspirational success stories.

CSAH has partnered with numerous celebrities including LeAnn Rimes, Dave Matthews Band, Gary Sinise, Toby Keith, Charlie Daniels, Regis Philbin and Big & Rich and Fortune 500 corporations like Kellogg’s, GNC and GM, to help further its cause.

This type of donation certainly fills an unexpected by important need for wounded troops. It's nice to see a partnership between CSAH and Craftmatic to make this program a reality and impact the lives of deserving veterans and their families. This is an innovative program!

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

St. Jude, Stanford Kick Off 2008 Eagles for St. Jude Campaign

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Stanford Financial Group kicked off the 2008 Eagles for St. Jude campaign with the sinking of the first eagle of the 2008 PGA TOUR season. As part of the Eagles for St. Jude campaign, the scoring of the eagle by Mike Weir triggers the first of many $1,000 donations from Stanford to St. Jude, the premier pediatric cancer research center. Stanford will continue to donate $1,000 per eagle for the duration of the season. The program is also supported by the Golf Channel, which provides season-long updates and promotional support for Eagles for St. Jude. The public is invited to participate in the program by making a donation to St. Jude to help the hospital find cures and save children.

Public donations to Eagles for St. Jude can also be made. The public is offered three donation options : Make a donation to St. Jude for every eagle made by Vijay Singh, who serves as the Eagles for St. Jude Ambassador. -- Make a donation to St. Jude for every eagle made on the TOUR, regardless of the player. -- Make a one-time donation to St. Jude.

For the 2008 season, Singh has pledged to donate $5,000 for every eagle he makes on the TOUR. This is a major increase from the $1,000 per eagle pledge he made for the 2007 season, during which he made 12 eagles. Although he was slated to donate $12,000 per his commitment, Singh donated $50,000 in 2007, a $38,000 donation above his commitment.

"Making eagles on the TOUR takes on a whole new meaning with the Eagles for St. Jude program because I know my accomplishments help St. Jude achieve its mission to find cures for these special children," said Singh. "It touches my heart to see these brave kids - they have so much courage to fight. It makes me feel proud every time I make an eagle and it gives me added drive and passion to play my best golf."

In 2007, Stanford Financial Group assumed the title sponsorship of what was previously known as the FedEx St. Jude Classic and is now named the Stanford St. Jude Championship, a premier PGA TOUR event that has benefited St. Jude since 1970. The Eagles for St. Jude program was created in Stanford's inaugural sponsorship year out of the desire to provide a season-long fundraising component to the Memphis tournament. During the 2007 PGA TOUR, 1,222 eagles were made, which resulted in Stanford donating $1,222,000 to St. Jude for the Eagles program.

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is internationally recognized for its pioneering work in finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases. Founded by the late entertainer Danny Thomas and based in Memphis, Tenn., St. Jude freely shares its discoveries with scientific and medical communities around the world. No family ever pays for treatments not covered by insurance, and families without insurance are never asked to pay. St. Jude is financially supported by ALSAC, its fundraising organization.

Stanford Financial Group is a privately held, wholly owned global network of financial services companies led by Chairman and CEO Sir Allen Stanford and founded by his grandfather, Lodis B. Stanford in 1932. Stanford's core businesses are private wealth management and investment banking for institutions and emerging growth companies. Stanford provides private and institutional investors with global expertise in asset allocation strategies, investment advisory services, equity research, policy research, international private banking and trust administration, commercial banking, investment banking, merchant banking, institutional sales and trading, real estate investment and insurance. Securities products and services in the United States are offered through Stanford Group Company, member FINRA/SIPC.

This partnership between Stanford Financial and St. Jude is a great way to engage golf fans interested in supporting a worthy cause. Singh's pledge to donate $5,000 for every eagle he makes on the tour demonstrates his commitment, and hopefully fans will support him by making pledges of their own.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Centex Homes To Donate $40,000 Worth of Materials to Habitat for Humanity

INDIANAPOLIS — Continuing a partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis, Centex Homes will donate approximately $40,000 worth of materials to the organization following the final day of the 2008 Indianapolis Home Show on Sunday, Feb. 3.

The donations will come from Centex’s Centerpiece homes at the show, including all salvageable lumber, countertops, lighting and plumbing fixtures and interior doors.

"We are excited to continue the relationship with our local Habitat for Humanity,” said Centex Homes regional marketing manager Vincent Laplante. “It is an incredible organization that continues to help build homes and hope for the people in and around Indianapolis. We know, through Habitat for Humanity, that this donation of materials will be shared with those local families in need.”

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Indianapolis has built 17 homes this year and plans to build 18 homes in 2008, with the support of sponsors and donors. The Centex donation will add to the more than 330 homes built since 1987.

Since being established in 1992, the Indianapolis Division of Centex Homes has grown to become the second largest builder in Indiana, with more than 30 communities in central Indiana. The company builds new single-family homes, town homes, condominiums, villas and semi-custom homes ranging in prices from $99,000 to $1 million in Geist, Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Zionsville, Avon, Franklin Township, Greenwood, Greenfield, Center Grove and Brownsburg areas.

The Indianapolis Home Show at the Indiana State Fairgrounds continues its 86-year tradition of offering the best in home products, decorating, construction and remodeling ideas for approximately 100,000 visitors to gather ideas and compare. The Indianapolis Home Show is produced by DMG World Media, an international exhibition and publishing company that produces more than 300 market leading trade exhibitions, consumer shows and fairs each year.

Donating these materials is an innovative way to give them a second life in a Habitat for Humanity home. The donation will make it easier for Habitat volunteers to build some of the 18 houses it expects to construct in 2008.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Pompano Beach Companies Bring Joy to Local Children

POMPANO BEACH, Fla. — Everyone needs the occasional reminder to count their blessings. For Pompano Beach-based sister companies B R Signs, Inc. and Is Franchising 4 You?, the chance to do so came this holiday season.

“We looked into a few ideas, including answering letters to Santa through the United States Post Office…then the opportunity to get involved with the Boys & Girls Club of Broward County came about,” said CEO Bill Reicherter.

A holiday party for more than 125 children and 60 adults was planned at the Boys & Girls Club in Pompano Beach. Presents for the children were provided by NBA star Eddie Jones, currently of the Dallas Mavericks and formerly of the Miami Heat. Jones grew up in the area around the club. After speaking with Boys & Girls Club of Broward County director Sam Jordan and Pompano Beach location director Greg Jones, the decision was made to provide food, raffle prizes for the adults and a visit from Santa Claus.

On Dec. 19, 20 employees of B R Signs, Inc. and Is Franchising 4 You? walked into the Boys & Girls Club of Pompano Beach with Santa.

“I felt like a new man,” says Reicherter, “The way the kids and parents looked at us was incredible and inspiring. I have achieved many awards in my life, but nothing came close to the feeing of seeing a young child smile for ear to ear and say thank you when they received a gift from Santa.”

The investment was $5,000 this year. But this was just the first of many charitable ventures for B R Signs, Inc. and Is Franchising 4 You? Reicherter says a successful organization looks into what creates and fosters positive things and finds a way to create opportunity, or at least positive feelings for others.

“I believe [charitable giving] is a social and economic commitment that should be made by companies, the same as they commit to corporate goals, to make a positive impact on another person’s life. You never know, that one thing could be all the difference a young child or adult remembers in life as a turning point of sorts…something that helped make them the person they become later in life,” he said.

IS Franchising 4 You? is an unbiased, solely educational source of franchise industry information dedicated to helping all potential franchise owners make a safer, educated business decision. Through seminars, tool kits and a network of experts, franchisors, owners and suppliers, the company provides information to entrepreneurs.

B R Signs is a design and manufacturing team with over 50 years of experience in the national sign business. The company provides its customers with consistent quality sign solutions where they control the brand and the importance of their image.

This is a fantastic example of what smaller companies can do to lend their support to needy children and favorite causes. The donations directly benefited children and parents in Broward County who might not have otherwise had a happy holiday. Any small company can follow this example and do good in their own community.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

New Balance Donates $1 Million to Susan G. Komen for the Cure for 2007

As a result of the success of its Lace Up for the Cure Collection, New Balance will donate $1 million to Susan G. Komen for the Cure for 2007. New Balance had pledged to contribute 15 percent of wholesale sales from the collection, with a guaranteed minimum donation of $500,000.

The Lace Up for the Cure Collection features performance footwear, apparel and accessories that all feature a pink ribbon, the universal symbol of breast cancer awareness. The line is distinguished by a special hang-tag that explains the significance of the pink ribbon and the company's 18 year relationship with the Susan G. Komen for the Cure.

Wear the Lace Up for the Cure Collection to honor loved ones who have been affected by the disease, to celebrate survivors and to demonstrate support for the cause. New Balance has been associated with the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure since 1989 and has been a national series sponsor since 1991.

The Komen foundation was established in 1982 by Nancy Brinker to honor the memory of her sister, Susan G. Komen, who died from breast cancer at the age of 36. Thanks to events like the Komen Race for the Cure, the foundation has invested nearly $1 billion to fulfill its promise, becoming the largest source of nonprofit funds dedicated to the fight against breast cancer in the world.

New Balance had pledged to donate a minimum of $500,000 up to a maximum of $1 million from its Lace Up for the Cure Collection. Thanks should also go to consumer who purchased the colorful shoes and other apparel to support this important cause. New Balance has pledged to remain partnered with Komen until a cure is found. Kudos!

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