Red Kettle Campaign to be Extended This Year at all Wal-Mart and SAM’S CLUB Locations Nationwide Due to Unprecedented Needs
Alexandria, Virginia [Sept. 16, 2005] – The Salvation Army and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., today announce a temporary expansion of their long-term partnership with an agreement to extend the duration of The Salvation Army’s 2005 holiday fundraising efforts at all 3,800 Wal-Mart and SAM’S CLUB locations nationwide.
The extended time frame will allow The Salvation Army to double the number of days for its traditional holiday “Red Kettle Campaign” at Wal-Mart facilities from Friday, Nov. 18 through Christmas Eve.
Because of the unprecedented needs in response to Hurricane Katrina and the country’s overwhelming outpouring of support, Wal-Mart recognized the need to temporarily broaden its existing relationship with the Army by extending the Red Kettle campaign at its stores, allowing The Salvation Army to obtain much needed financial resources.
Last year, $102 million was raised through the kettles, including more than $17 million raised in front of Wal-Marts and SAM’S CLUBS, which helped The Salvation Army provide assistance for almost 33 million people in need throughout the United States. The Red Kettle funds remain in local communities.
“We are thrilled at the overwhelming support of Wal-Mart,” said Maj. George Hood, national community relations and development director for The Salvation Army. “This extended presence will give us a unique opportunity to step-up our drives and do the most good for the families devastated by the Katrina tragedy, as well as continue to assist the many people in crisis we help year round.”
The Salvation Army has been at the forefront of the Katrina response efforts from the beginning, assisted with the help of donations and Wal-Mart’s initial $1 million contribution made the day Katrina slammed into the Gulf Coast. Army relief units and personnel were among the first to respond to the areas devastated by the hurricane, and in the last three weeks, the organization has:
• Served more than 2 million hot meals across the country to Katrina survivors;
• Deployed more than 100 pieces of equipment and more than 1,000 officers and employees full-time to Katrina relief work throughout the affected region;
• Assisted more than 30,000 people in shelters across nearly a dozen states;
• Reunited 8,400 survivors with their families through SATERN (Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network)
These efforts are among the largest response to a natural disaster in the United States in The Salvation Army’s 125-year history.
In addition to meeting the immediate needs of survivors of this storm, The Salvation Army is working closely with federal, state and local governments, and other non-profit partners, to address the long-term needs of the people and communities devastated by Katrina, both in the affected region and throughout the nation.
“Hurricane Katrina has impacted not only the communities along the Gulf Coast, but so many other communities who have opened their hearts to the thousands of evacuees who are now rebuilding their lives. Many will return and some will choose to build lives in new communities, but all will need our support over the holiday season,” said Betsy Reithemeyer, head of the Wal-Mart & SAM’S CLUB Foundation. “Due to The Salvation Army’s efforts during this disaster and their long history of assisting those in need, we want to give them every opportunity to fill their kettles of hope.”
In addition to the traditional Red Kettles, donations to The Salvation Army Red Kettle holiday fundraising campaign can be made online at www.1800SALARMY.ORG. Those wishing to make donations to their local Salvation Army can visit www.salvationarmyusa.org, contact their local Salvation Army, or call 800-SAL-ARMY.
About The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination since 1865. Nearly 33 million Americans receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through the broadest array of social services that range from providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, assistance for the disabled, outreach to the elderly and ill, clothing and shelter to the homeless and opportunities for underprivileged children. About 83 cents of every dollar raised is used to support those services in nearly 5,000 communities nationwide. For more information, go to http://www.salvationarmyusa.org.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., operates Wal-Mart Stores, Supercenters, Neighborhood Markets and SAM’S CLUBS in the United States. Internationally, the company operates in Puerto Rico, Canada, China, Mexico, Brazil, Germany, United Kingdom, Argentina and South Korea. This year, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., will contribute more than $200 million to support communities and local non-profit organizations.