At Wal-Mart, we believe in a philosophy of operating globally and giving back locally. We know we can make the greatest impact on our communities by supporting charitable causes that are important to our customers in their own neighborhoods. We are proud to be a "store of the community" for all of the locations we serve by helping to provide financial and volunteer support to community-focused organizations, and by utilizing our Wal-Mart stores and Sam's Clubs to provide opportunities for our customers and associates to give back.Wal-Mart is the Largest Corporate Cash Contributor in America
For the last two years, Wal-Mart has been recognized by the Chronicle of Philanthropy as the largest corporate cash contributor in America. Charitable contributions from Wal-Mart and the Wal-Mart Foundation support a variety of causes and issues in the areas of education, job skills training, sustainability, and health and human services. The majority of those contributions were made to organizations at the local level, based not just on corporate decisions, but also on recommendations from our associates.
- In 2007, Wal-Mart stores, Sam's Clubs and the Wal-Mart Foundation gave more than $296 million to 4,000-plus communities in the United States.
- Wal-Mart's international operations also support their local communities. Donations abroad in 2007 totaled more than $41 million.
- In addition to philanthropic support provided by the company, Wal-Mart's U.S. customers and associates donated more than $106 million in individual contributions through company-sponsored fundraisers. International customers and associates contributed an additional $30 million.
- Wal-Mart donated $1 million or more to numerous charitable and community organizations including, but not limited to: Children's Miracle Network, America's Second Harvest, The Salvation Army, the American Red Cross, the United Way of America, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Hispanic Scholarship Fund, United Negro College Fund, Muscular Dystrophy Association, Mercy Health Systems, Special Olympics, and Boys & Girls Club of America.
In addition to making charitable contributions to various organizations and causes, we also are active in supporting an extensive associate volunteer network. This network has become one of the largest volunteer programs in the U.S., and it grows as we grow. As part of our grassroots style of giving, many of our community involvement programs directly involve our associates working with local community non-profit organizations and their projects.
- Wal-Mart's associate volunteer program, Volunteerism Always Pays (V.A.P.), encourages associates to take active volunteer roles in their communities. After an associate serves as a volunteer with an organization for a certain number of hours, the Wal-Mart Foundation makes a financial contribution to the organization in their name. This allows an associate's time contribution to do even more good.
- Last year, through the V.A.P. program, our associates recorded approximately 1 million volunteer hours. As a result of this volunteer activity, the Wal-Mart Foundation gave $6 million in 2007 to organizations where our associates volunteered.
- Numerous associates have been recognized in their communities and by the organizations they serve for their outstanding efforts.
At Wal-Mart, we serve thousands of communities across America and in those communities we've formed some remarkable partnerships. These relationships allow us to connect with our associates and millions of customers per week to do enormous good on both the local and national levels.
- Supporting education continues to be a focus for Wal-Mart and its foundation as $67 million went to back efforts in this area. Through company-sponsored scholarship programs, 7,200 students received $7.2 million to continue their post-secondary education. Wal-Mart also recognized more than 4,000 teachers across the U.S. through its 12th annual Teacher of the Year program, providing more than $5 million to schools in every community where the company has a presence. Other funding went to support initiatives focused on improving high school graduation and adolescent literacy rates, as well as other causes.
- When disaster strikes, Wal-Mart stores and Sam's Club locations can be counted on to work with disaster relief agencies, supporting their lifesaving work and helping communities to begin the recovery effort. In 2007, Wal-Mart donated $4 million in cash and products to assist with everything from floods and tornadoes to wildfires and winter storms nationwide.
- America's Second Harvest, the nation's largest charitable hunger-relief organization, continues to be an important partner in Wal-Mart's efforts to help feed the nation's hungry. The Wal-Mart Foundation in 2007 gave $5 million to America's Second Harvest food banks, coupled with more than $35 million in product donations provided by the company. In December, Wal-Mart was the first corporation to respond to a nationwide food shortage in food banks by sending 3 million meals in specially dispatched trucks to food banks servicing every state in the nation.
- The Salvation Army has a long-standing relationship with Wal-Mart, and in 2007, Wal-Mart demonstrated its support for the organization's Red Kettle campaign by once again allowing the bell-ringers in front of our stores and clubs. Donations collected in the Red Kettles at Wal-Mart locations reached an all-time high of $32.5 million, accounting for 27 percent of all donations to The Salvation Army's campaign.
- Wal-Mart has a long history of supporting our nation's military and their families. During the 2007 holiday season, the company partnered with the Fisher House Foundation on a special Christmas program, "Operation: Deck the Walls." Military families residing in the 36 U.S. Fisher Houses across the U.S. were able to enjoy cash and product donations of $350,000 from Wal-Mart. The Wal-Mart Foundation also provided funding to support veterans returning home from assignments abroad, as well as to organizations seeking to meet the unmet needs of military families.
- Children's Miracle Network, a national organization that aids children's hospitals across the country, is one of the most significant recipients of Wal-Mart giving. In 2007 - the 20th year of the partnership between the two organizations - it is estimated that the company and its customers provided more than $39 million in support of local children's hospitals across North America, including more than $7 million from Wal-Mart Canada. Wal-Mart also supported other health care initiatives through donations to organizations such as the American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association and Meharry Medical College.
- Wal-Mart continues to be a leader in environmental sustainability, and last year gave more than $6 million to support sustainability philanthropic causes. Partnerships in these initiatives included the Rocky Mountain Institute and the University of Arkansas' Applied Sustainability Center, among others. Additionally, $800,000 was awarded to approximately 2,300 elementary schools in 12 states for students' recycling efforts through the Wal-Mart Foundation's Kids Recycling Challenge program.
- Since 1996, Wal-Mart stores have posted the pictures of more than 7,100 missing children. As a result of Wal-Mart's Missing Children Boards, we've helped to recover more than 170 children. Wal-Mart also continues to promote Code Adam, a program created by Wal-Mart more than 10 years ago and used today by other businesses. The Code Adam program immediately alerts all employees to assist in finding children that are separated from their parents in a Wal-Mart or Sam's Club.