Personal Connections Drive Employee Participation For Changing Tomorrow Day at Astellas

NORTHBROOK, Ill., Sept. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- More than generosity of spirit drives employees at Astellas Pharma US, Inc. (Astellas Pharma US), a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Astellas Pharma Inc. (Astellas), to participate in the company's annual corporate social responsibility initiative, Changing Tomorrow Day, that wraps up today. A personal connection to the locations and a close tie to the company's mission of improving the lives of patients drive employees to volunteer.

For Mayumi Gaines of Astellas, the chance to volunteer for a project at the Ronald McDonald House in Maywood hit close to home. "My nine-year-old son was born with a craniofacial disorder called Crouzon Syndrome and had to undergo major surgery last year," said Gaines.  "We were lucky to live close to the hospital, but knowing how challenging it is for family members when their children are hospitalized motivated me to volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House."

Astellas employees like Gaines will be working on service projects throughout the United States, Canada and Brazil for Changing Tomorrow Day 2012. Points of Light, a non-profit organization, helped identify worthwhile sites throughout the country where employees will be teaching kids about health and wellness, beautifying buildings and grounds, painting health inspired murals, preparing and serving nutritious food and assembling hygiene kits for the homeless. In all, nearly 2,000 Astellas employees will take part in service projects throughout the Changing Tomorrow Day campaign, which is more than 80 percent of the company's total workforce in the Americas.

Masao Yoshida, President and CEO of Astellas, said he is gratified by the employees' response to Changing Tomorrow Day. "It is very important to us that we give back to our communities as much, if not more, than they give us. After all, these communities are our homes, too," he said.

In addition to asking for their valuable time, Astellas is also asking employees this year to contribute to the Starlight Children's Foundation, contributions that will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the company.  The money will be used to brighten the lives of hospitalized children with the purchase of Starlight Fun Centers – mobile entertainment units with gaming consoles and high definition television monitors – for hospitals in the communities where Astellas employees live and work. In July, the national sales force raised $25,000 to purchase five Fun Centers for the organization.

About Astellas
The Astellas culture and brand is committed to building community, helping others, encouraging integrity and inspiring people to make a difference, today, tomorrow and every day. Astellas Pharma US, Inc., located in Northbrook, Illinois, is a U.S. affiliate of Tokyo-based Astellas Pharma Inc. Astellas is a pharmaceutical company dedicated to improving the health of people around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceutical products. The organization is committed to becoming a global category leader in focused areas by combining outstanding R&D and marketing capabilities. For more information about Astellas Pharma US, Inc., please visit our website at www.astellas.us or follow us on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/AstellasUS.

About Points of Light
Points of Light is the leading volunteer organization with more than 20 years of history and a bipartisan presidential legacy. Our mission is to inspire, equip and mobilize people to take action that changes the world. We connect people to their power to make a meaningful difference by providing access to tools, resources and opportunities to help volunteers use their time, talent, voice and money to meet the critical needs of our communities. We are organized into three divisions: Programs, Civic Incubator and Action Networks, which include HandsOn Network, the largest network of 250 local volunteer centers across the country and around the world; generationOn, the youth service movement that ignites the power of kids to make their mark on the world; AmeriCorps Alums, the national service alumni network that activates the next generation of service leaders; and Points of Light Corporate Institute, our enterprise that enables companies to engage their employees and customers in service. For more information, visit www.pointsoflight.org

About Starlight Children's Foundation
Starlight Children's Foundation is a leading global health and education charity working to embrace, empower and enrich the lives of children from illness to wellness. Since 1983, Starlight has invested in the emotional health of children with serious medical conditions through programs that help the entire family cope with the experiences of prolonged illness and improve the health outcomes of children. Each year Starlight enriches the lives of more than 4.5 million children globally by providing ongoing support to children, parents and siblings through a network of partner hospitals, staff and volunteers in the US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Israel. To learn more visit www.starlight.org.

SOURCE Astellas Pharma US, Inc.



RELATED LINKS
http://www.pointsoflight.org
http://www.starlight.org
http://www.us.astellas.com

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