BENTONVILLE, Ark., December 1, 2006 – With Christmas just weeks away, Santa hosted this week his top “advisors” at his North Pole, Alaska home for the first-ever “Top of the World” Toy Summit. The goal: to strategize on Christmas 2006 and ensure that kids around the world have a fun-filled holiday season—making this the best Christmas ever.
To pledge their commitment to the Christmas spirit, young delegates who attended the summit, signed a “Declaration of Nice,” a promise to set an example for children all over the world. “I’ve been nice enough for the past few years that I can be here today and have fun – it just means a lot,” said Sydney Spillane, 8, from Jacksonville, AR. The “Declaration of Nice” is particularly important as a recent survey on naughty-and-nice-behavior showed that less than 25 percent of parents say their kids step up their nice behavior between Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve.
Forty “extra nice” military children, specially selected by Operation Homefront, made the journey from across the country to attend this week’s Toy Summit with Santa. The young delegates consulted Santa Claus and Scott McCall, Wal-Mart toy expert, on the season’s hottest toys. In addition, to help predict Christmas weather patterns to guide Santa’s famous reindeer, children convened with Kelly Songster, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in nearby Fairbanks.
“We specially selected military families from across the United States to participate in this one-of-a-kind event and are thrilled to be bringing an extra-special Christmas experience to these deserving children,” said Meredith Leyva, Chairman Emeritus and Chief Creative Officer of Operation Homefront.
America Supports You and Operation Homefront, two organizations dedicated to helping and supporting military families, facilitated this “meeting-of-the-minds” with the generous support of Wal-Mart.
About Operation Homefront
What is today Operation Homefront began in 2001 as a military spouse-generated idea. In response to the shortcoming of support for the families of deployed service members, CinCHouse.com members (military wives and women in uniform) created the project that has evolved into a major nonprofit charity serving 26 military communities in 25 states.
Today CinCHouse.com operates as a program as part of the nonprofit Operation Homefront family. From a good idea, to a great organization, Operation Homefront understands and takes care of the needs of the military community.
About Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT)
Every week, more than 127 million customers visit Wal-Mart Stores, Supercenters, Neighborhood Markets, and Sam’s Clubs across America.
The company and its Foundation are committed to a philosophy of giving back locally. Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) is proud to support the causes that are important to customers and associates right in their own neighborhoods, and last year gave more than $245 million to local United States communities.
To learn more, visit www.walmartfacts.com, www.walmart.com, or www.walmartfoundation.org.
About America Supports You:
America Supports You is an ongoing nationwide program that helps showcase American’s support for the men and women of the Armed Forces. Since its launch in November of 2004 by the Department of Defense, America Supports You has welcomed 225 member organizations and more than 20 corporate sponsors to its team. Many America Supports You team members support the troops by writing letters, sending care packages, helping the wounded when they return home, assisting military families, sending e-mails or simply extending kind gestures to the troops. To learn more about how you can support military personnel please visit www.americasupportsyou.mil.