Chevrolet Raising $1 Million to Help Troops Call Home

Year-long campaign supports Cell Phones for Soldiers charity

Jun 22, 2010, 11:20 ET from General Motors

DETROIT, June 22 /PRNewswire/ -- As an extension of the GM Military Discount program, Chevrolet is launching a year-long campaign to raise $1 million to support Cell Phones for Soldiers.

To reach that goal, Chevrolet is calling on GM employees, NASCAR fans, and Chevrolet dealers across the country to donate unwanted, gently used cell phones for recycling. Proceeds will be used to provide pre-paid calling cards to troops serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.

"We feel Cell Phones for Soldiers is a worthy cause that fits well with GM's long-standing commitment to support the men and women serving our country," said Mark Degnan, GM director of Local Advertising, Marketing and Training. "Personally, with a brother and a nephew in active duty in Iraq, I know how important every call home can be for soldiers overseas, and their families at home."

Cell Phones for Soldiers was founded in 2004 by brother and sister Robbie and Brittany Bergquist.  To date, they have provided more than 60 million minutes of free calling cards through a national network of individual and corporate supporters. 

Cell Phones for Soldiers recently announced a new campaign to offer free cell phones to armed forces returning from service in Iraq and Afghanistan. Returning troops can receive a refurbished phone, preloaded with a month's worth of calling time, to help them restart their lives after active duty.  

To help raise funds for Cell Phones for Soldiers, Chevrolet's effort will include:

  • Encouraging all 77,000 GM employees in the United States to donate their used personal phones to the program.
  • Placing collection boxes for used cell phones at Chevrolet dealers nationwide.
  • Introducing Cell Phones for Soldiers to millions of race fans at 16 Chevy Racing events throughout the 2010 race season (schedule below). In May, Dale Earnhardt Jr. introduced Cell Phones for Soldiers to NASCAR fans at Richmond International Raceway.

Individuals who would like to support the cause also can download a pre-paid mailing label at, to ship donations of one to 100 used cell phones.

"There are more than 130 million phones retired every year in the United States," said Robbie Bergquist. "If just 2 percent of Americans were to donate their unwanted phones, we could supply every soldier with a free call home – and a small measure of our national gratitude."

Cell Phones for Soldiers will be featured at these Chevy Racing Events in 2010:

July 2-3


July 23-25


July 30-August 1


August 13-15


September 3-5


September 10-11


September 24-26


October 1-3


October 8-10


About the GM Military Discount Program

The GM Military Discount is the industry's best military discount program. The GM Military Discount is offered to all active and Reserve members – and their spouses – of the U.S. Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines, National Guard and Coast Guard. Discounts range based on the suggested retail price of the vehicle purchased. The GM Military Discount Program also offers an additional $750 discount for members of USAA. Both the GM Military Discount and USAA member discount are available on most Buick, GMC, and Chevrolet models. More information can be found at

About Cell Phones for Soldiers:

Cell Phones for Soldiers was created by Brittany & Robbie Bergquist of Norwell MA.  After reading a story about a soldier who ran up a huge phone bill calling home from Iraq, these two teenagers decided to help out.  They started by opening an account with $21.00 of their own money.  They are collecting cash donations and old cell phones.  The cell phones are recycled for cash and the proceeds are used to buy prepaid calling cards for our soldiers serving in the Middle East.  Cell Phones for Soldiers is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.  Their efforts have motivated people and businesses around the country to donate to this worthy cause.  Their goal is to provide every US soldier with a way to call home for free.  For more information, please visit

SOURCE General Motors