|Sears Canada Kicks Off Annual 'Tree of Wishes' Gift Giving Campaign|
|TORONTO, Nov. 27, 2009 (Canada NewsWire via COMTEX) -- For the 8th consecutive year, underprivileged children across Canada will experience the thrill of opening presents on Christmas day thanks to the generosity of Sears customers and associates
Sears Canada Inc. officially kicked off its annual 'Tree of Wishes' gift giving campaign for underprivileged children across Canada this month.
Recent reports have shown that many children (one in 10 children in Canada) are still living in poverty across Canada, a problem made worse for many by the present economy. The Sears Canada Tree of Wishes program, which began in 2002, has become a very welcome tradition and a bright star to less fortunate children in communities across the country, providing gifts to kids who would otherwise not find one under the tree Christmas morning.
"Giving back to the communities we serve and helping families and children during these difficult economic times is especially important to Sears," said Dene Rogers, President and CEO, Sears Canada. "We are proud of our long standing Tree of Wishes program and our customers and associates have embraced it enthusiastically."
Inside all Sears Department Stores, Sears Home Stores, Outlet Stores, and participating Dealer Stores, is a large Christmas tree decorated with gold stars. Each gold star has the name, age and 'wish gift' of a child printed on it. Customers and associates can pick a star off the 'Tree of Wishes', purchase the wish gift, and return it to any Customer Service Desk Associate. A Sears local charity partner will deliver the gift to the child.
No matter what the wish gift is... from dolls to dump trucks, from board games to skateboards...Sears makes all wishes come true.
Last year, more than 12,000 gifts were bought and given to children from Sears to various local charity partners. All Sears stores across the country work with a local charity partner who provides a list of children's wish gifts to Sears. Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada is teamed up with Sears stores as a local charity partner more than any other organization.
Sears Canada has been Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada's longest-standing and most significant corporate partner for 44 years. Sears understands how important it is for children to grow up healthily and happily. For many children, after school time is often filled with playing sports, taking music lessons or doing homework. But for some, sadly, that's not the case. All too often, kids who lack a proper support system can end up getting into trouble.
Boys and Girls Clubs have influenced the lives of five generations of young Canadians by providing safe, fun, stimulating environments in which to play, learn and develop their abilities outside of school hours. Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada is a leading youth organization, providing after school and critical hours programs to more than 200,000 children and youth across Canada each year.
Sears Canada is committed to helping young Canadians reach their full potential by supporting initiatives that contribute positively to their development. Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada has been providing valuable support services to Canadian children and youth for over 100 years.
"We are proud of our multi-decade relationship with Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada," added Mr. Rogers. "It is gratifying to see how relationships like ours help to bring hope and opportunity to youth who otherwise would be without."
"Sears Canada has been a fantastic partner in supporting Boys and Girls Clubs and the positive impact Clubs have on children, youth and their families across Canada," said Pam Jolliffe, President and CEO, Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada. "The Tree of Wishes program is a wonderful initiative that brings joy to thousands of children and families in need at this time of year and we are honoured to be a part of it."
This Holiday season Sears is also helping to raise funds for Boys and Girls Clubs and other organizations that provide support programs for youth across Canada through the sale of a cute collectible plush raccoon named "REGINALD" offered at Sears stores, through the catalogue and online at www.sears.ca for $3.99. For every "REGINALD" sold, Sears will donate $0.50 to programs that promote the healthy development of youth in communities across the country. This is the twelfth year for Sears popular Holiday charity plush program. Each year, the plush character contains the year as part of its design and many Canadians have generously and proudly collected Sears charity plush characters of all twelve years.
Sears Canada is a multi-channel retailer with a network of 196 corporate stores, 195 dealer stores, 38 home improvement showrooms, over 1,800 catalogue merchandise pick-up locations, 108 Sears Travel offices and a nationwide home maintenance, repair, and installation network. The Company also publishes Canada's most extensive general merchandise catalogue and offers shopping online at www.sears.ca.
SOURCE: Sears Canada Inc.
Eliana Cugini, Corporate Communications, Sears Canada, (416) 662-2245, email@example.com