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BJ’s Wholesale Club Inc. is joining forces with 199 schools this year through the warehouse club retailer’s “Adopt-a-School” (ADAS) program. At the start of each school year, every BJ’s location teams up with a local school to improve students’ educational experience and provide them with opportunities to become active in their communities. To that end, a BJ’s representative works closely with educators and teachers at the school and identifies ways in which the company can help.
Now in its 17th year, ADAS has provided more than $1.5 million in funding to thousands of schools. One example is the 2011 partnership between Soule Elementary School and BJ's Wholesale Club in Salem, N.H.
“Last year, BJ’s in Salem offered assistance with fundraising, functions and most importantly, the Soule Reads Project,” recounted BJ’s community relations specialist, Danielle Salvetti, who aided the school in the areas of community involvement and reading awareness. “BJ's and the Soule School worked in partnership to ensure that the 2011 Read Across America celebration was educational and memorable by providing every student with a book by author Kate DiCamillo to call his or her own.”
BJ’s offers two versions of ADAS: “Giving” and “GRADES.” Schools in the “Giving” program receive a one-time donation to use toward such discretionary programs as field trips, special events and reading enhancement programs. The program also includes a complimentary BJ’s membership and invitations to BJ’s-sponsored events that encourage good citizenship or help build learning skills. As well as receiving all of the benefits of the Giving program, “GRADES” schools work with the company’s community relations specialists to design customized partnership plans focused on curriculum enhancement, community involvement and fundraising.
Westborough, Mass.-based BJ’s operates 196 clubs in 15 eastern states.