initiatives benefiting hundreds of thousands of families in 14 countries
BENTONVILLE, Ark., Dec. 13, 2007 – ‘Tis the season of giving and thousands of Wal-Mart stores worldwide are participating in programs to benefit the communities they serve. From Mexico to the United Kingdom and Costa Rica to Canada, employees of the retail giant have spearheaded fundraising and gift giving activities to help those in need.
“This year, our associates’ efforts will have culminated in helping hundreds of thousands of people around the world,” said Mike Duke, vice chairman of Wal-Mart’s International Division. “It’s engrained in our culture to give back to the communities we serve, and our associates have shown the power of helping hearts and hands.”
• In Mexico, Fundación Wal-Mart partnered with Wal-Mart’s stores to offer several holiday giving programs under the “Share A Smile” theme. Special toy shops, located in the parking lots of 400 stores, have been set up where customers can make their own toy purchases and also buy gifts for local charitable institutions helping children or elderly people in need. Wal-Mart employees will deliver the presents in time for Christmas. Winter clothing is also being collected for distribution by the Red Cross.
Additionally, in the state of Jalisco, Wal-Mart employees joined together to raise funds to purchase sports balls for local elementary schools. This week, 75,000 balls were delivered to children at more than 200 schools.
At Mexico Sam’s Clubs, associates are offering members the opportunity to take photos with Santa, with the proceeds being used to raise funds for TV Azteca’s Jugueton holiday toy event. This week, Sam’s Clubs employees in Mexico delivered 46,000 toys valued at US$35,000 to the program.
• In the United Kingdom, Wal-Mart-owned ASDA stores are getting in the holiday spirit by offering dedicated donation points where customers can donate anything from toys to toiletries and will have the opportunity to choose where their gifts go.
After the holidays, from Dec. 31 through Jan. 21, ASDA is setting up in-store recycling programs for shoppers’ wrapping paper and cards. In partnership with Trees for Cities, a nonprofit dedicated to organizing planting projects, ASDA will donate funds from recycled paper and cards to support tree planting activities in its communities. With the funds collected by ASDA, Trees for Cities aims to plant more than 500 trees across the UK next year.
• In Costa Rica, Wal-Mart employees partnered with the Centeno Guell school, an organization assisting children with disabilities, to help raise funds. Children created a calendar sold in Wal-Mart stores with pictures they drew of their dreams. The group expects to raise more than US$10,000 to help improve the school’s recreational facilities.
• In North America, Wal-Mart’s U.S. and Canadian stores are working with the Salvation Army’s Christmas Kettle Campaign to benefit millions of families. Wal-Mart recently kicked off its “Bells Ringing Across America” campaign with a US$1 million donation to The Salvation Army. Last year, The Salvation Army collected a record US$30 million in front of U.S. Wal-Mart stores and Sam’s Club locations, the most raised by any partner – accounting for 25 percent of all contributions to the Red Kettle Campaign during the Christmas season.
Additionally, in partnership with Fisher House, a nonprofit organization that provides free lodging to military families with hospitalized service members, Wal-Mart is donating more than US$350,000 in funding and gifts to military families living in 36 U.S.-based Fisher Houses across the country.
About Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT)
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. operates Wal-Mart discount stores, Supercenters, Neighborhood Markets and Sam’s Club locations in the United States. The Company operates in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Japan, Mexico, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico and the United Kingdom. Wal-Mart serves more than 176 million customers weekly in 14 markets. The Company’s securities are listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol WMT. For more information: www.walmartfacts.com