HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill., Feb. 1 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- With the final months of winter upon us and some of the coldest temperatures yet to be faced, it is important for Americans to remember those who do not have a warm home, 23 percent of whom are military veterans(1). At a time when these veterans need help the most, Sears is rallying support for them. Today the retailer announced it has teamed up with AMVETS to support "Operation Blanket," a program created to collect blankets that will be distributed to military veterans.
Customers are invited to show their support and donate gently used blankets at select stores* from Jan. 31 through Feb. 18. In exchange for their donation, Sears will provide each customer with a coupon for 20 percent off any one home fashion or home decor item, or a coupon for 10 percent off any one housewares, luggage or furniture item (mattresses are excluded). Customers will receive a coupon for each blanket they donate.
"Sears is proud to work together with AMVETS to support 'Operation Blanket' in an effort to help provide comfort to those veterans who have given so much for our country," said Doug Wurl, VP/GMM, Sears Holdings Home Fashions. "Each year we challenge ourselves to find new ways to say 'thank you' to the members of our military. This is yet another way we can show our appreciation and encourage participation from our customers."
AMVETS will distribute all collected blankets to veterans through its thrift shops and local veteran posts in select cities across the country. Sears will also make a $5,000 donation directly to AMVETS to further support their military veteran programs.
"We are pleased to be working together with Sears and appreciate that they are making it easy for Americans to give back and help our veterans," said AMVETS National Commander, Duane Miskulin. "The harsh winter months are an especially difficult time for the homeless and each blanket we collect will help keep one veteran a little bit warmer."
Sears' ongoing commitment to assisting troops and their families is evident by a number of initiatives they have committed to over the years, including several recruiting and employment programs. The retailer has set one of the most generous standards of support in the country for employees who serve in the military by maintaining civilian pay and benefits throughout their calls of duty.
Sears also oversees the Heroes at Home program, which includes a joint effort between Sears Holdings Corporation and the non-profit, Rebuilding Together, which works to preserve home ownership for military veterans. Through the Heroes at Home program, Sears Holdings Corporation has sought to improve the lives of military families in need across America by making necessary repairs, improvements or modifications to their homes. To date, Sears has raised more than $11 million for military families.
*Sears stores in the following states will participate in "Operation Blanket": California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin.
About Sears Holdings Corporation
Sears Holdings Corporation is the nation's fourth largest broadline retailer with approximately 3,900 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 the Country Living collection, which is offered exclusively by Sears and Kmart. We are the nation's largest provider of home services, with more than 12 million service calls made annually. Sears Holdings Corporation operates through its subsidiaries, including Sears, Roebuck and Co. and Kmart Corporation. For more information, visit Sears Holdings' Web site at www.searsholdings.com.
A leader since 1944 in preserving the freedoms secured by America's armed forces, AMVETS provides support for veterans and the active military in procuring their earned entitlements, as well as community service and legislative reform that enhances the quality of life for this nation's citizens and veterans alike. AMVETS is one of the largest congressionally-chartered veterans' service organizations in the United States, and includes members from each branch of the military, including the National Guard and Reserves. To learn more visit www.amvets.org.
(1) U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness and the Urban Institute, 1999
SOURCE Sears Holdings Corporation