WAYNE, N.J., Oct. 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Toys"R"Us® today announced it is making it easier than ever for kids to spread Christmas cheer this season by helping grant wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions across the country. Now through November 5, for every Wish List created in-store or online, the company will donate $1 in Toys"R"Us gift cards, up to $50,000, to the Make-A-Wish Foundation® to help create happy holidays for wish kids. In addition, the Toys"R"Us Children's Fund, a public charity affiliated with Toys"R"Us, Inc., has provided the Make-A-Wish Foundation with a $275,000 grant, enabling even more wishes to come true.
Toys"R"Us is also launching new Wish List tools – including apps, guides and more – to make gift-giving easier and provide "Santas" with ideas for all the little ones on their lists. Since Wish List launched in 2009, more than 1 million lists have been created by parents, along with their kids, for special occasions throughout the year.
"Creating a Wish List is always a fun way for parents and kids to begin the holiday season, but this year, the simple act of creating their list can help make dreams come true for some very special kids through the Make-A-Wish Foundation," said Greg Ahearn, Chief Marketing Officer, Toys"R"Us, U.S. "In conjunction with this initiative, we're introducing some great new tools to make sharing, updating and viewing Wish Lists more convenient wherever, however and whenever our customers choose to do so."
Making More Wishes Come True through Alliance with the Make-A-Wish Foundation
Throughout the next three weeks, Toys"R"Us customers have the opportunity to help the Make-A-Wish Foundation simply by creating a Wish List in-store or online at Toysrus.com/WishList. For every Wish List created now through November 5, the company will donate $1 in gift cards, up to $50,000, to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Wish kids often request visits to amusement parks, vacations for their families or meet-and-greets with favorite celebrities; however approximately 12 percent of all wishes are for shopping sprees at their favorite stores, and many desire to shop for those dream gifts at Toys"R"Us. This holiday season, Toys"R"Us employees will help create memorable shopping experiences for wish kids when they visit stores nationwide.
During the campaign, Toys"R"Us stores across the nation will display special holiday signage with Make-A-Wish® messaging to increase Wish List creation, while benefiting kids in need. In addition, the company has launched a dedicated microsite at Toysrus.com/MakeAWish and is promoting the campaign online through its official Facebook page, Facebook.com/Toysrus, for anyone interested in learning more about creating a Wish List of their own.
"In the spirit of the holidays, kids and parents across the country have the opportunity to join the Make-A-Wish Foundation and Toys"R"Us in helping fulfill the wishes of kids who need it most through the Wish List campaign," said David Williams, President and Chief Executive Officer for Make-A-Wish Foundation of America. "Toys"R"Us shares in our mission to help kids in need, and we are proud to expand our ongoing relationship this holiday season."
Over the past 15 years, the Toys"R"Us Children's Fund and Toys"R"Us, Inc. have provided the Make-A-Wish Foundation with more than $1.8 million to help make wishes come true for children facing life-threatening medical conditions. Throughout the year, shopping sprees are held at stores across the country, creating celebratory events for wish children as they are cheered on by Toys"R"Us employees and Geoffrey® the Giraffe.
New Wish List Tools Make Giving Fast and Fun for Families
As parents and gift-givers prepare to shop for the presents children are dreaming of this Christmas, Toys"R"Us is making Wish List even more accessible for on-the-go shoppers with new smartphone apps for iPhone and Android launching later this month. The downloadable app allows friends and family to view any Wish List, no matter where they are, making it easier than ever for gift-givers to grant little ones' wishes this holiday season. In addition, Toys"R"Us Toy Finder, a fully integrated iPad app, is a convenient way to create wish lists and get coupons on the move. Kids can browse through top toy picks and add their favorites to a Wish List that can be shared quickly through e-mail.
And, it won't be long before kids everywhere begin preparing their letters to Santa to make sure he knows exactly what to bring down the chimney on Christmas Eve. This year, Toys"R"Us is helping kids get those letters to Saint Nick quickly – and letting parents in on the secret. Through a new feature on Toysrus.com, available in early November, little ones can write, send and watch their letters travel to Santa through cyberspace with some help from Geoffrey. Parents are then sent an e-mail with the letter so they can create or update a Wish List based on what their child really wants.
In stores, gift-givers can pick up Holiday Scan Guides to help choose the perfect present for their loved ones. Guides include toy recommendations by age and gender for Baby's First Christmas, 12 to 24 months and a 12-page guide for kids. In addition, parents can use the new barcode scanning feature on the guides at Wish List kiosks to quick start their little one's Wish List. With the scan of just one barcode, a child's Wish List can include all the recommended hot toy picks based on his or her age and gender or a single toy selection.
Wish List: The Ultimate Toy Registry
Known as the ultimate toy registry, the Toys"R"Us Wish List is a service parents and kids can use together to create a tailored list of toys based not only on what the child wants, but on his or her age, interests and abilities. All Toys"R"Us stores nationwide feature a dedicated Wish List self-service kiosk, allowing gift-givers to print out their loved one's Wish List quickly with the click of a button. Together with their children, parents can continue to browse and select products with scanning devices in Toys"R"Us stores to create or update an existing Wish List and can also access, update and print their wish lists online at Toysrus.com/WishList.
Wish List is available in-store and online year-round for birthdays, holidays and other special occasions. The company supports Wish List with a comprehensive marketing program inclusive of in-store signage, print and online promotions, as well as through its Facebook page at Facebook.com/Toysrus.
Customers who create a Wish List for their child will enjoy the following benefits:
- Customize a Child's List with the RIGHT Toys – A Wish List guides gift-givers to products that are age-appropriate and suitable for an individual child's skill level, helping to ensure that a child is not frustrated or bored with a toy.
- Set Expectations in Advance of the Big Day – The exercise of building a Wish List can be used as an opportunity to teach kids about the cost of certain products and which items are within a family's budgetary reach, so they are not disappointed if they do not receive a particular toy.
- Rely on Expert Advice from THE Toy Authority – In making Wish List selections, toy-buyers can consult with the store's knowledgeable associates or utilize the Gift Finder application on Toysrus.com for toy suggestions for a child's Wish List.
- Share Wish Lists Easily with Gift-Givers Near and Far – Notifying friends and family of a Wish List is as easy as sending insert cards that include the registrant's Wish List number. Wish Lists can be printed in-store at Wish List kiosks. They can also be shared via e-mail or through social networking sites, such as Facebook and Twitter.
- Avoid Duplicate Gifts – Once a gift is purchased, it is deducted from the Wish List, just like a gift registry, so kids do not receive more than one of the same gift.
- Simple Returns – Another advantage of creating a Wish List is that registrants do not have to worry about keeping receipts in the event they desire to make a return or exchange an item in-store that was purchased from their Wish List. Store employees can look up any Wish List transaction simply by revisiting the purchase history on the registrant's list for easy returns. All other return guidelines apply.
About Toys"R"Us, Inc.
Toys"R"Us, Inc. is the world's leading dedicated toy and juvenile products retailer, offering a differentiated shopping experience through its family of brands. Merchandise is sold in 875 Toys"R"Us and Babies"R"Us stores in the United States and Puerto Rico, and in more than 520 international stores and over 200 licensed stores in 34 countries and jurisdictions. In addition, it exclusively operates the legendary FAO Schwarz brand and sells extraordinary toys in the brand's flagship store on Fifth Avenue in New York City. With its strong portfolio of e-commerce sites including Toysrus.com, Babiesrus.com, eToys.com and FAO.com, it provides shoppers with a broad online selection of distinctive toy and baby products. Headquartered in Wayne, NJ, Toys"R"Us, Inc. employs approximately 70,000 associates annually worldwide. The company is committed to serving its communities as a caring and reputable neighbor through programs dedicated to keeping kids safe and helping them in times of need.
About the Make-A-Wish Foundation
The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Founded in 1980 when a group of caring volunteers helped a young boy fulfill his dream of becoming a police officer, the Foundation is one of the world's leading children's charities, with 62 chapters in the United States and its territories. With the help of generous donors and nearly 25,000 volunteers, the Make-A-Wish Foundation grants a wish every 40 minutes and has granted nearly more than 200,000 wishes in the United States since its inception. Visit wish.org and discover how you can share the power of a wish® with the Make-A-Wish Foundation.