HOUSTON, March 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- CITGO Petroleum Corporation is rewarding 12 charities with $5,000 in Gift Cards to help them extend their Ripples of Good and the impact of their work in their local communities. Almost 1,700 charities entered the Winter Fueling Good program and nearly 151,000 votes were cast to help determine these winners. Since its launch in 2009, Fueling Good has rewarded 91 charities with enough CITGO Gift Cards to drive more than a million miles doing good in their own communities-from providing food and medical care to promoting education and reading initiatives.
"The principles of Fueling Good can be seen in all aspects of the CITGO brand, as community support is a core value for both CITGO and the Marketers and Retailers who operate the nearly 6,000 locally owned CITGO locations. That's why we are very proud to help these charities continue to serve their neighbors and improve lives in their communities," said Dr. Dario Merchan, CITGO vice president of government and public affairs. "Through the Fueling Good program we can showcase these local heroes and the good work they do, whether it is providing a car to a family that needs one or helping children learn to read."
The 12 winners in the Winter Fueling Good program are spread across 11 states in the CITGO footprint:
Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy (CMLC) – This local organization partners with landowners and other groups to protect land and water resources, including more than 22,000 acres of farm, forest and natural lands in and around Henderson County, N.C.
Charity Cars – Based in Marietta, Ga., this charity provides free donated vehicles to struggling families nationwide to help them be self-sufficient. Since 1996, it has awarded more than 4,500 free vehicles.
Georgia Lions Lighthouse Foundation – This charity provides eye exams, glasses, eye surgery and low-cost hearing aids to under-insured Georgia residents to increase their independence and confidence.
Indiana University Foundation: Books & Beyond – Based in Bloomington, Ind., this charity provides books for students in Rwanda and encourages students there to work with students in the United States to write children's books.
James V. Brown Library – The library operates a story mobile program for preschoolers to nurture a love of reading in children throughout Lycoming County, Pa.
Kids Corps – Based in Racine, Wis., this organization offers young boys music enrichment and team-building skills.
Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps – This youth organization, located in Rockford, Ill., uses music and dance to help develop self-esteem and self-reliance and provides a place for family entertainment.
Spring Initiative – This initiative provides daily after-school programs, including personal and education support, for at-risk middle school students in Coahoma County, Miss.
Stony Brook Cancer Center – The foundation offers cancer resources, education, support and amenities for cancer patients in Suffolk County, N.Y., serving more than 2,700 newly diagnosed adult cancer patients each year.
Wythe-Grayson Regional Library Foundation – The library's literacy outreach program works with shut-ins and nursing homes in rural Appalachia and Southern Virginia, removing transportation barriers to reading.
Youth Home, Inc. – This charity, based in Little Rock, Ark., helps emotionally troubled adolescents and families become healthier members of the community through a variety of comprehensive programs, including individual, group and family therapy.
"We hope the efforts by these charities will inspire others to extend their own Ripple of Good," added Dr. Merchan. "It's amazing to see how far a gallon of gas can go, whether transporting a sick patient to get urgently needed medical care or helping children and families build a better life."
Registration for the next Fueling Good program will open for all 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations within the CITGO marketing area on Sept. 4, 2012. To enter your charity for a chance to win $5,000 in CITGO Gift Cards, and to learn how CITGO and local organizations are making a difference, visit www.FuelingGood.com. For regular updates and to join the conversation, "Like" CITGO Fueling Good at www.Facebook.com/CITGOFuelingGood and view videos of past winners at www.youtube.com/CITGOFuelingGood.
CITGO, based in Houston, is a refiner, transporter and marketer of transportation fuels, lubricants, petrochemicals and other industrial products. The company is owned by PDV America, Inc., an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A., the national oil company of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.