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Safeway kicks off fundraising campaign for people with disabilities

Easter Seals, Special Olympics, Rebuilding Together and others will benefit

PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway on Friday announced the start of its companywide fundraising campaign for Easter Seals, Special Olympics, Rebuilding Together and a range of job training programs that help people with disabilities live fuller lives.

“Assisting people with special needs of all kinds has long been a Safeway priority,” stated Safeway EVP and Safeway Foundation chair Larree Renda. “As a company that proudly employs thousands of people with disabilities, Safeway directly benefits from the work of these organizations and is committed to contributing to their success and increasing their outreach.”

During April, the company’s nearly 1,700 stores in the United States and Canada will raise funds for organizations that are at the forefront of providing assistance, training, therapy and social outlets to the millions of people who live with physical or developmental disabilities, the grocer stated.

The company also will be partnering with Rebuilding Together to plan and execute home or community center rehabilitation projects that serve people with disabilities. In the coming weeks, teams of Safeway volunteers will be deployed into each of Safeway’s key markets to assist Rebuilding Together “project managers” with various repair, landscape, paint and remodel work.

Safeway officially launched its “Support for People with Disabilities” fundraiser this past Tuesday with a special event at a store in Alameda, Calif. Company officials were joined by Easter Seals president and CEO James Williams, Special Olympics VP corporate partnerships Kristine Templin, soccer star Brandi Chastain and actress Cathy Rigby. Williams praised Safeway for its longtime support.

“We’ve long counted Safeway among the most important corporate sponsors for Easter Seals,” Williams said. “Their demonstrated abilities as a fundraiser and clear passion for the cause have translated into real improvement in our ability to deliver community based services to people with disabilities.”

Each year Safeway dedicates April to raising funds and bringing awareness to helping people with disabilities. Donations will be collected at every Safeway, Vons, Pavilions, Dominick’s, Carrs, Randalls, Tom Thumb and Genuardi’s store in the United States and Canada. The company also uses in-store broadcasts and video messages to customers and employees to share information about breakthroughs in research and new programs that help millions of people with disabilities in North America and around the world. To date, Safeway has raised and donated more than $100 million to support such organizations as Easter Seals, Special Olympics and a range of other organizations that assist people with special needs.

"The support of Safeway and their customers for people with intellectual disabilities is a great example of how together we can live in unity," stated Timothy Shriver, chairman and CEO of Special Olympics. "From employment and donations to providing places of welcome and acceptance for our athletes, Safeway is paving the way in building communities of inclusion."

Easter Seals and Special Olympics are just two of the many important organizations and causes that the company supports each year. Safeway contributes to a broad range of charitable and community programs, and in 2010 donated more than $200 million to education, hunger relief, health and human services, and cancer research.

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