Americans Share Moving Stories and More Than $11 MM in Free Gift Certificates Through Feed It Forward Program

With 17 Days Left to Participate in the Award-winning Giving Initiative, Shares Participant Feedback and Reminds Consumers there is $29 MM Left to Give

Dec 15, 2010, 08:00 ET from

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill., Dec. 15, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- today announced that more than $11 million in free gift certificates have been given to date through the company's holiday giving initiative, Feed It Forward. On Nov. 22, 2010, the company re-launched Feed It Forward, the program that celebrates the gift of giving and enables individuals nationwide to give away up to 40 free, $10 gift certificates every day through Dec. 31 through a dedicated giving site, Now, with 17 days left, participants still have the opportunity to give up to $400 in gift certificates per day, and help achieve its goal to give away $40 million in free gift certificates this holiday season.

"It's exciting to see how many people are embracing Feed It Forward and we're fortunate to be a part of so many people's holiday giving this season," said Cary Chessick, president and CEO of "The overwhelming number of touching notes we've received from Feed It Forward participants reminds us once again that the gift of giving lifts spirits, spreads joy, and strengthens community."

Stocked with a total of $40 million in gift certificates valid for more than 9,500 restaurants nationwide, the site has empowered people to give to anyone on their holiday list in spite of economic strains and share the gift of giving with those near and far. In response to the initiative, letters from participants from across the country have arrived by the thousands, detailing moving stories of holiday giving inspiration. shares some of these stories to encourage and inspire continued giving through the program:

  • Raquel F. writes - "I can't even begin to tell you what this means to me... I lost my job in February and have not found work yet. My husband lost his job two weeks ago and this is such a blessing to people like us. We really appreciate being able to show our appreciation to people who help us by giving a little to them."
  • Earnie B. writes – "I am disabled and retired, so I am on a fixed, low income. This is great as I can send something to those I care about without having to do without things I really need, like food & medicine. Many thanks."
  • Audrey P. writes – "As a single mom having a terrible time in this tough economy, Feed It Forward enables me to be able to afford to get gifts for family members this year."
  • Sue M. writes – "We are very strapped for money right now, but there are people we need to give gifts and I wondered how we were going to manage to do it!  Also, I have two nieces in the military that it would be great to give something to, and Feed It Forward will allow me to do it!"
  • Gretchen K. writes – "Now that I am unemployed and my unemployment could possibly be at the point of being used up, I am especially appreciative of your promotion since I cannot afford to buy the amount of Christmas presents that I have done in years past for my family and friends.  With your promotion I am still able to give gifts to people and brighten their day and mine, too."

"Feed It Forward participants have already helped us to give away millions of dollars worth of gift certificates, and there is still time to participate!" said Chessick. "I would like to encourage the nation to join us and celebrate the gift of giving this holiday through Feed It Forward."

Individuals nationwide have equal opportunity to give the free gift certificates away until $40 million worth is given away or until Dec. 31, whichever comes first. If a participant has given to all their personal contacts, they can still continue to spread the gift of giving by selecting the option to give to the " Community." All gifts given to the community will be disseminated to email subscribers throughout the month of December and January. Individuals can visit to participate and learn more about the "Feed It Forward" initiative. Also, visit for a fact sheet, Q&A images and more.

About is the trusted and valued source connecting restaurants and diners nationwide. The company offers savings at more than 15,000 restaurants nationwide with more than 35,000 daily gift certificate options. brings people together to relax, converse and enjoy well-prepared and -served meals at affordable prices. To date, customers have saved more than $500 million through the gift certificate program. has operated since 1999 and is based in Arlington Heights, Ill.