ANN ARBOR, Mich., Nov. 28 -- This holiday season, Waldenbooks(R) stores offer customers the opportunity to donate to Reading Is Fundamental(R), Inc. (RIF(R)) with the purchase of an exclusive plush toy, Webster the Bear. Every time a Webster Bear is sold, a portion of the proceeds will go to Reading Is Fundamental, the nation's largest and oldest nonprofit children's literacy organization that provides books and other reading resources to children and families across the country. As part of this charitable campaign, shoppers who spend more than $30 at Waldenbooks can buy Webster for $6.99 (the regular retail price is $19.99) with a portion of the sale going to RIF. The effort will continue throughout the holiday season, while supplies last.
"Reading Is Fundamental is the perfect organization for Waldenbooks to support," said Ron Staffieri, president of Waldenbooks. "We are delighted that the money donated will go directly toward providing literacy services to families nationwide."
"We are deeply grateful to Waldenbooks and their customers for their support for RIF throughout this holiday season. During this time of both joy and reflection, it's important to remember that literacy and the love of books are among the greatest gifts any child can receive," said Carol H. Rasco, president and chief executive officer of Reading Is Fundamental, Inc. "The support we receive from this promotion will help us meet that need and bring the gift of reading to families in communities everywhere."
Borders Group is a longtime supporter of Reading Is Fundamental, having raised more than $2 million for the organization through various programs over the past several years.
Waldenbooks is a subsidiary of Borders Group, Inc., (NYSE: BGP), a leading global retailer of books, music, video and other information and entertainment items with stores in the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and the commonwealth of Puerto Rico. A FORTUNE 500 company headquartered in Ann Arbor, Mich., Borders Group employs 30,000 employees worldwide and operates over 360 Borders domestic superstores, 21 international Borders stores, 33 Books etc. locations and approximately 850 Waldenbooks stores. Teamed with Amazon.com , the company also offers online shopping through Borders.com (http://www.borders.com).
Founded in 1966, RIF develops and delivers children's and family literacy programs that help prepare young children for reading and motivate school-age children to read regularly. Through a national, grassroots network of more than 310,000 community volunteers, last year RIF programs provided 14 million new, free books and other essential literacy resources to 4 million children.
This year, RIF is celebrating its 35th anniversary and the milestone of placing more than 200 million books in the hands and homes of children who need them most. For more information, visit RIF's Web site at http://www.rif.org.