Sears customers will be able to turn their shopping into dreams come true for military families and veterans. In celebration of Veterans Day, the retailer will launch a fund-raising effort in stores and online to benefit Heroes at Home(SM), a charitable program created in association with the nation's leading non-profit home rehabilitation organization, Rebuilding Together. Through Heroes at Home, the retailer seeks to improve the lives of military families and veterans in need across America by making necessary repairs, improvements or modifications to their homes.
From November 9 through December 28, Sears customers will be able to participate in this initiative by using their Sears card or purchasing a Sears gift card. Sears will make a donation to Heroes at Home for every credit card purchase made at any of its Sears stores from November 9 to December 28 up to $1 million, and for every gift card purchased during that time up to $100,000. Customers can also make a donation at registers or online at sears.com. Over the summer, Heroes at Home raised more than $1.3 million, which will go to help more than 100 military families in need across America by making necessary repairs, improvements or modifications to their homes.
"We are proud to be partnering with Rebuilding Together to support families through this important initiative," said Aylwin B. Lewis, chief executive officer and president of Sears Holdings Corporation. "Sears has a longstanding commitment to the heroic men and women who serve in the military. We hope our customers will take this opportunity to help grant wishes for military families and veterans while they shop our stores."
The November 9 kick-off
The Veteran's Day Heroes at Home effort will kick off on November 9 during an event to honor Sgt. Jonathan VanderWert of New Prague, Minn. In order to save money, the VanderWerts moved into a dilapidated home in need of major repair and remodeling with their nine children. However, in August of 2007, their plans to fix the home were put on hold when Sgt. VanderWert was called into active duty with the Minnesota National Guard to serve a 15 month tour in Iraq. Many of the rooms in the home are missing walls and ceilings, there are exposed electrical wires, and only one bathroom is functioning. Heroes at Home will repair the basic structure of the VanderWerts' home by finishing bathrooms and all bedrooms on the second floor, repairing all exposed wiring, painting bedrooms, and upgrading the kitchen.
"When we work together, we build new hope in the lives of others," said Gary A. Officer, President and CEO of Rebuilding Together. "Through its partnership with its customers, Sears demonstrates how extraordinary things can be done for our veterans and service members and their families who have sacrificed for us."
Extreme Makeover's Paige Hemmis will honor military families by joining Heroes at Home to rebuild and repair homes. "Our military works hard to serve and protect us overseas," says Hemmis, "and I feel delighted that I can give back by granting wishes to these heroes and their families this Veterans Day."
Sears Holdings' ongoing commitment to assisting troops and their families includes several recruiting and employment programs. The company offers a military pay differential to employees serving in the armed forces. Additionally, reservists who are employed full-time are allowed to continue participating in life insurance, medical and dental programs.
To find out more about Heroes at Home or to refer a military family or veteran to the program go to http://www.rebuildingtogether.org/ or call 1-800-473-4229.
About Sears Holdings Corporation
Sears Holdings Corporation is the nation's third largest broadline retailer with over $50 billion in annual revenues and approximately 3,800 full-line and specialty retail stores in the United States and Canada. Sears Holdings is the leading home appliance retailer as well as a leader in tools, lawn and garden, home electronics and automotive repair and maintenance. Key proprietary brands include Kenmore, Craftsman and DieHard, and a broad apparel offering, including such well-known labels as Lands' End, Jaclyn Smith and Joe Boxer, as well as the Apostrophe and Covington brands. It also has Martha Stewart Everyday products, which are offered exclusively in the U.S. by Kmart and in Canada by Sears Canada. The company is the nation's largest provider of home services, with more than 13 million service calls made annually. For more information, visit Sears Holdings' website at http://www.searsholdings.com/.
About Rebuilding Together
Rebuilding Together is the nation's largest nonprofit organization working to preserve homeownership and neighborhoods by providing rehabilitation services free of charge to those in need. Through the support of corporate sponsors, local businesses, and the hands-on work of a quarter-million volunteers, Rebuilding Together rehabs and repairs more than 9000 homes each year. The market value of this work is in excess of $100 million annually. In addition to its core home repair work, Rebuilding Together rehabs community centers and conducts home modification and repair programs that focus on elder home safety, energy efficiency, veterans housing, and disaster recovery and reconstruction. Rebuilding Together has grown to 225 affiliates nationwide since its founding in 1988, and is now preserving safe and healthy homes in 1800 communities nationwide. Rebuilding Together celebrated the rehabilitation of its 100,000th home in 2006. For details, see http://www.rebuildingtogether.org/ or call 1-800-REHAB-9.
First Call Analyst:
SOURCE: Sears Holdings Corporation
CONTACT: Taline Kundakji of Euro RSCG Worldwide PR, +1-212-367-6922;
or Brenda Storch of Sears Holdings, +1-847-286-2897, +1-224-735-9579; or Becky
Carter of Rebuilding Together, +1-202-518-3500