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Sears Employees Continue to Give Big Despite Economic Downturn

TORONTO, Feb. 7, 2011 (Canada NewsWire via COMTEX) --

Over $1,000,000 given to charitable causes across Canada

Sears Canada employees have successfully raised significant and much-needed funds for a variety of Canadian charities across the country. Despite unfavourable economic conditions that have eroded donations to charities over recent years, thousands of Sears Canada employees were able to continue their tradition of giving generously to charity thanks to a special payroll deduction program that makes it easier to give, especially in times of economic uncertainty. Through the Sears Employees Charitable Fund (SECF), Sears employees helped to improve the quality of life in their communities by contributing over $1,000,000 through payroll deductions to a number of registered charities across Canada over a two-year period.

"Sears employees continue to demonstrate a generous spirit when it comes to charitable giving," said Dene Rogers, president and CEO, Sears Canada Inc. "Employee participation in the Sears Employees Charitable Fund year after year, especially over these last few economically-challenging years, is a testament to the dedication of Sears employees to those in need in their communities. I want to express my gratitude to our employee and to the Sears Employees Charitable Fund Committee, made up of volunteer associates, who helped organize events and activities to maximize donations to so many worthy causes."

The monies were raised through the Fund in 2009 and 2010. These results are especially impressive given the significant decline in charitable giving from 2008 onwards according to Statistic Canada's latest report on charitable donation figures released in November 2010.

The Sears Employees Charitable Fund, a registered charity established in 1972, helps raise funds for a variety of causes that are close to Sears associates' hearts. Thousands of associates in stores, distribution facilities, call centres, head office and other administrative buildings participate in the Company's payroll deduction program. Sears Canada supports the SECF's administration costs in order to ensure that 100 per cent of the donations go directly to the charities. Some of the charities that benefit from funds raised through SECF include the Canadian Cancer Society, the Heart & Stroke Foundation, the Diabetes Association, and the SPCA.

"From coast to coast, Sears Canada associates enthusiastically support the Sears Employees Charitable Fund," said Chris Bower, Chair of the Sears Employees Charitable Fund Committee. "The Fund allows employees to give what they can throughout the year to one or more registered charities on a regular basis, which makes giving more affordable. Together, as a team, it adds up to a sizeable donation to a wide variety of organizations in communities across the country."

Sears Canada is a multi-channel retailer with a network of 196 corporate stores, 260 hometown dealer stores, 33 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.

Media Contact: Maria Ganogiannis, Media and Public Relations Coordinator, Sears Canada, T: (416) 941-4424, maria.ganogiannis@sears.ca