EL SEGUNDO, Calif., December 12, 2001 - Tens of thousands of children across the country will get to experience the joy of toys this holiday season as part of Mattel's holiday giving program. This holiday, the Mattel Children's Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Mattel, expects to donate more than 150,000 toys to approximately 500 organizations throughout the nation - an increase of 52 percent over last year. Additionally, employees at Mattel's headquarters in Southern California will have volunteered more than 10,000 hours to charitable causes by the end of the year.
Concerned that many charities are likely to receive fewer donations this holiday in the aftermath of September 11 fundraising and a slowing economy, Mattel recognized the need to continue its toy donation program, particularly to local community organizations. As a result of Mattel's generosity, many of this season's hottest toys - Barbie(R) dolls, Matchbox(R) cars, American Girl(R) dolls and Fisher-Price(R) products - will be given to some of the country's most deserving children.
"At Mattel, it is our calling to bring joy to children's lives, and recent events have only served to reinforce and revitalize our commitment to giving," said Robert A. Eckert, chairman and CEO, Mattel, Inc. "This holiday season, we have substantially increased both our product contributions and employee volunteerism with the goal of improving the lives of those in need."
Mattel will support many community organizations through toy donations and employee volunteerism during the holidays, including: Big Sisters; Mattel Children's Hospital at UCLA; and the Magic Johnson Foundation. In addition to toy donations, individual departments at the company will volunteer at numerous local events, above and beyond Mattel's more than 35 corporate-sponsored volunteer events held each year.
In addition to a million-dollar donation in September to the American Red Cross, the United Way of New York City's September 11th Fund and the New York City Public and Private Initiative Fund (with the money divided evenly between each organization,) this holiday season Mattel will also make donations of toys and volunteer hours to benefit families affected by the events of September 11, including "Operation Thank You."
Mattel will partner with several local companies in hosting "Operation Thank You," an event designed to show appreciation for U.S. armed forces personnel and their families. Additionally, the Mattel Children's Foundation will match dollar-for-dollar donations made by Mattel employees to select charitable organizations; to date, roughly 900 Mattel employees from around the globe have contributed $81,000 to the September 11th cause.
"The time and generosity that Mattel employees are demonstrating this holiday season is truly remarkable," according to Regina Rodman, executive administrator, Mattel Children's Foundation. "The families that our foundation serves will be so overwhelmed. I'm optimistic that Mattel can make a positive difference in their lives."
Mattel, Inc. is the worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of toys and family products. The company's best-selling brands include Barbie(R), Hot Wheels(R), Fisher-Price(R) and American Girl(R). With headquarters in El Segundo, California, Mattel has offices and facilities in 36 countries and sells its products in more than 150 nations throughout the world. The company's web site can be found at www.mattel.com.
About Mattel's Children Foundation
The Mattel Children's Foundation - the philanthropic arm of Mattel, Inc. - promotes the spirit of philanthropy and community involvement among its employees and makes charitable investments aimed at furthering Mattel's goal to better the lives of children in need.