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Kroger inspires its customers to give

• Customers, staff at area stores help raise $53,000 for MDA

June 17, 2012
By KAYLA VAN DYNE - Staff Writer , Times Leader

BELLAIRE - The walls, ceilings and windows of Kroger stores through the Ohio Valley was covered with paper shamrocks, not to celebrate St. Patricks Day but sold to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. The MDA is a nonprofit agency that is working to cure muscular dystrophy.

"Our Ohio Valley associates and customers really did an amazing job this year with the Muscular Dystrophy Association fundraiser. Over a two-week period (March 17 March 31), we raised $53,092 in our Ohio Valley Stores," said Jackie Siekmann, media and government relations manager for Kroger, Columbus Division. "The entire Columbus division, which includes Columbus, the Ohio Valley and Toledo raised a grand total of $165,870."

Each year, MDA will send 3,500 kids with one of the 40 types of muscular dystrophies to one of the many MDA camps across the country. The cost of this is $800 per camper, which the families do not pay.

"These camps are not cheap, but it provides children with an incredible experience of swimming, wheelchair soccer, hide and seek and dancing. For one week, they get to forget about their physical limitations, and be kids," said Siekmann. The camp is located in Ashley, Ohio at Recreation Unlimited.

This is an amazing opportunity that 206 children (just this year alone) will get to experience a Muscular Dystrophy Camp for a week, where they can just be kids and enjoy activities designed for them, thanks to our Kroger customers and associates."

Kroger has been a sponsor for more then 20 years. In those years, had sent numerous children to camp for a week he or she will not forget. Stores throughout the valley have asked numerous customers to buy a shamrock, held events, and started friendly competition between stores, going as far as two store managers challenged each other, the loser dresses up like a leprechaun.

Many of the stores went beyond the cashier as the customers if he or she would like to make a $1, $5 or $10 donation. Stores and associates sold hot dogs in the lobby, brought in deejays, and a pie a manager in the face.

"We are so proud of our associates and our customers for stepping up to the plate," said Siekmann. "... So thanks to our customers who dug deep into their pockets for this fundraiser."

Van Dyne can be reached at



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