CINCINNATI, Sept. 26, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Kroger Co.'s (NYSE: KR) family of stores, in partnership with key suppliers, has committed $3 million in donations for local breast cancer initiatives across the country to support National Breast Cancer Awareness month in October.
The company's annual Giving Hope a Hand® campaign kicked off in stores on Sunday, September 25 and features 53 Kroger associates who are breast cancer survivors on marketing materials and custom packages of national and Kroger brand products. These women share their survivor stories on the packaging of select items sold exclusively in Kroger's family of stores.
Melissa "Missy" Veeder, who works in retail merchandising for Ralphs Division in Southern California, is featured this year on packages of Kraft shredded cheese. She is grateful for the network of support she found while battling breast cancer, and now reaches out to other women to offer that same kind of friendship and help.
"Talk to other women who have been there, talk to other women that may have just been diagnosed. Every woman who has been in those shoes can give you some wisdom that might be what you need to hear," said Veeder.
Veeder's inspirational story and others can also be found at www.sharingcourage.com, an interactive website dedicated to raising breast cancer awareness.
"We are honored that so many of our courageous associates are willing to share their experiences as breast cancer survivors," said David B. Dillon, Kroger's chairman and chief executive officer. "Their inspirational stories educate and encourage others to better care for each other and their own health."
At the end of this year, Kroger will have donated more than $18 million to support breast cancer research, education and services since Giving Hope a Hand® began in 2006.
Kroger's campaign features a store-wide sales promotion of popular items, many of which will feature exclusive, specially marked pink packaging. This year, 1,600 items, including Kroger's own products and popular items from Kroger partners including General Mills, Kellogg's, Kimberly Clark, Kraft, Pepsi, Procter & Gamble, Purina and SC Johnson will be marked with special shelf tags to highlight participation.
Kroger, the nation's largest traditional grocery retailer, employs more than 338,000 associates who serve customers in 2,439 supermarkets and multi- department stores in 31 states under two dozen local banner names including Kroger, City Market, Dillons, Jay C, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs and Smith's. The company also operates 788 convenience stores, 361 fine jewelry stores, 1,046 supermarket fuel centers and 40 food processing plants in the U.S. Kroger, headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, focuses its charitable efforts on supporting hunger relief, health and wellness initiatives, and local organizations in the communities it serves. For more information about Kroger, please visit www.kroger.com.
SOURCE The Kroger Co.