DENVER, Dec. 28 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The First Data Western Union Foundation today announced that it will make a donation of US$1 million to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies to support victims in the Asian countries most impacted by the recent earthquake and tsunamis that struck the region. The donation is the single largest donation made by the Foundation since its inception in 2000. "Many of our consumers, employees and agents live in the countries that were devastated by this natural disaster," said Christina Gold, president, Western Union Financial Services. "This monetary contribution made by the Foundation is a way to lend a hand and show support in the rebuilding process." People in the U.S. and Canada wishing to make individual donations to support disaster relief efforts can visit a Western Union agent location and complete a money transfer directly to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies free of charge. The Western Union Money Transfer service also is available in many areas that were affected by the tsunamis, so family and friends around the world can continue to transfer money to loved ones living in the impacted areas. In some cases, Western Union locations may be temporarily closed and the company is working diligently to restore service as quickly as possible. To inquire about service availability and the nearest Western Union location, consumers can call: U.S. 800-325-6000 Asia Pacific (61) 2 9226 9555 Latin America (011) 303-224-4284 Europe, Middle East and Africa (32) 2 639 7869 Since its inception, the Foundation has made more than 30 donations to support disaster relief efforts around the world. In 2004, the Foundation donated US$565,000 worldwide to support various disaster relief efforts. About Western Union Financial Services, Inc. and First Data Western Union Financial Services, Inc., a subsidiary of First Data Corp. (NYSE: FDC) is an international leader in consumer money transfer services. Consumers can quickly and reliably pay bills and transfer money around the globe using the company's proprietary money transfer network. Western Union and its subsidiary, Orlandi Valuta, together make up one of the world's largest money transfer networks with a total of approximately 200,000 agent locations in more than 195 countries and territories. Famous for its pioneering telegraph service, the original Western Union dates back to 1851 and introduced electronic money transfer service in 1871. For more information, please visit the company's web site at www.westernunion.com. First Data Corp., with global headquarters in Denver, helps power the global economy. Serving approximately 3.5 million merchant locations, 1,400 card issuers and millions of consumers, First Data makes it easy, fast and secure for people and businesses to buy goods and services, using virtually any form of payment: credit, debit, smart card, stored-value card or check at the point-of-sale, over the internet or by money transfer. For more information, please visit the company's web site at www.firstdata.com. About First Data Western Union Foundation The First Data Western Union Foundation, the charitable organization of First Data Corporation (NYSE: FDC), supports philanthropic initiatives worldwide. Since it's inception in December 2000, the Foundation has donated millions of dollars to help those most in need. Grants are made to non-profit organizations in health, education and human services that strengthen and improve the lives of many individuals in comminutes throughout the world. Scholarships are given to nontraditional college students. The Foundation also provides disaster relief funding to communities in need. Additionally, the Foundation raises money from First Data employees and business associates to increase the impact of grantmaking to communities worldwide. Please visit the Foundation's website at www.firstdatawesternunion.org.
SOURCE First Data Western Union Foundation