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Over the past three years, the Kroger Co.’s Southwest Division has awarded $3 million to thousands of Texas and Louisiana organizations through its Neighbor-to-Neighbor program.
Since 2008, Kroger has given non-profits, churches, synagogues and schools the opportunity to enroll in the program to receive a percentage of the $1 million it awards annually.
“As the market share leader among grocers in Dallas and Houston, Kroger has the ability to positively impact the neighborhoods we serve through donations, monetary contributions and volunteerism,” said Bill Breetz, Kroger Southwest Division president. “The Neighbor-to-Neighbor program is just one way we make a difference. It’s a great program that not only makes it easy for deserving organizations to raise capital but it also allows shoppers to give back effortlessly.”
When shoppers link their Kroger Plus card to a participating group, each time they shop a portion of their sale is contributed to the Neighbor-to-Neighbor fund. Community groups are awarded a percentage of the payout that reflects the number of qualifying purchases during the program year. For the 2010-11 period, more than 2,000 organizations earned funds, including the Allen Elementary PTA in Frisco, Texas.
“Our school earned $8,525 during the 2010-11 school year by enrolling in Kroger’s Neighbor-to-Neighbor program and we refer to it as ‘free money,’” said Sarah Lynn Gamble, community partners chair for the Allen Elementary PTA. “The program gives us the ability to purchase needed materials for teachers and support a variety of student education initiatives. With ongoing cutbacks in the school system, programs like Neighbor-to-Neighbor truly help.”
Kroger is currently accepting new applicants for the 2011-12 program year. Every year, groups must enroll to be an active participant, including those who have participated previously. Additionally, supporting customers need to re-link their Kroger Plus card to their charity of choice each year. This year, organizations must enroll by Dec. 31 to be eligible to accrue money. Registered groups will have the opportunity to accumulate funds through April 30, 2012.
The Kroger Southwest Division operates 208 stores, 198 pharmacies and 102 fuel centers in Texas and Louisiana.