Merrell Partners with Mast General Store to Help Fight Hunger

Merrell and Mast General Store are joining forces to help fight childhood hunger in local communities. For each pair of Merrell shoes purchased at Mast General Store, Merrell will fill a pack with food to feed a child for a weekend.
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Merrell, outdoor footwear and apparel brand, and Mast General Store are joining forces to help fight childhood hunger in local communities. For each pair of Merrell shoes purchased at Mast General Store October 14th through 31st, Merrell will fill a pack with food to feed a child for a weekend. http://www.maststoreonline.com/category.cfm/mast/merrell

For the third year in a row Merrell has partnered with Mast General Store to support Food For Kids. Through this partnership Merrell was able to help provided nearly 2,500 children with backpacks of food in 2011.

“Hunger is a serious problem, with an astounding one-in-four children suffering in the region we are so proud to be a part of this mission to keep kids fed while they're not in school,” said Steven Lime, marketing manager at Merrell. "We are hopeful that through this promotion we can help improve the livelihood of children in these communities. Community service is an important part of our brand and each year Merrell donates aid and thousands of employee hours in support of community organizations and causes.”

In 2012, the project will work with the following food agencies to help reduce childhood hunger in your region.

•The MANNA Food Bank is a private, not-for-profit service organization, founded in 1982, that links the food industry with 131 partner agencies in 15 counties of Western North Carolina. The MANNA FoodBank plays a vital role in the community by involving, educating, and uniting people in the work of ending hunger in Western North Carolina. The MANNA Packs for Kids Program is an invaluable resource that reaches out to at-risk elementary school children in need of food over the weekend. To help these families, MANNA provides children a large bag (usually 5 pounds) of supplemental food items, fresh fruits and vegetables, and personal care items each Friday that schools are in session.
•Loaves & Fishes works to provide a solution to hunger and waste in the Greenville County community. Sponsors of Mission Backpack commit to addressing the needs of Greenville's children at greatest risk of hunger by creating Mission Backpack. Loaves & Fishes recruits Mission Backpack sponsors, who commit to supporting one school for the entire school year. The program sponsors supply food, pack the backpacks, and deliver the packs to their sponsor school each week.
•The Health and Hunger Coalition plays a vital role in the High Country community, helping relieve poverty and hunger in a compassionate manner for families and individuals who are experiencing economic hardship and food shortages. During an average month, nearly 6,900 people receive food from the Hunger and Health Coalition's Food Pantry. One-in-three people served is a child. The Backpack Program provides backpacks of food every Friday to high school children so they won't have to go hungry over the weekend.
•Harvest Hope is a regional food distribution organization that collects, stores, and distributes food and related items that assist families and children throughout 20 counties in central South Carolina. BackPack Weekend and SnackPack Weekend is a collaborative effort between Harvest Hope and an ever-increasing number of public schools in Columbia. The program is designed to provide healthy, easily-prepared food to some of the most vulnerable children in our community, those who may be missing meals on a regular basis.

•Second Harvest responds to the overwhelming facts, nearly one in every four people in line at a local soup kitchen or shelter is a child. In the East Tennessee community an astounding 200,000 people are at-risk of hunger and roughly 40% of the food distributed by Second Harvest feeds a hungry child. Food for Kids is a collaborative effort between Second Harvest and an ever-increasing number of public schools within the food bank's 18-county service area. The program is designed to provide healthy, easily-prepared food to some of the most vulnerable children in our community, children who may be missing meals on a regular basis.

About Merrell Footwear:
Merrell® is a brand within the Outdoor Group, a division of Wolverine World Wide, Inc. that also includes Chaco and Patagonia Footwear. Merrell believes in encouraging everyone to get outside, be active and have fun. The Brand's mission is to increase youth participation in the outside through causes like Outdoor Nation and national events like the Merrell Down and Dirty Mud Run Series. Wolverine World Wide, Inc. is headquartered in Rockford, Michigan. The company's portfolio of highly recognized brands includes: Bates®, Chaco, Cushe®, Hush Puppies®, Merrell®, Sebago® and Wolverine®. The Company is also the exclusive footwear licensee of the following popular brands: CAT®, Harley-Davidson® and Patagonia®. The Company's products are carried by leading retailers in the U.S. and globally in nearly 180 countries and territories. Merrell, 9341 Courtland Drive, Rockford, Mich. 49351. Phone: (800) 789-8586; Fax: (888) 746-3329. FACEBOOK www.facebook.com/merrell TWITTER: @merrelloutside.

About Mast General Store:
Mast General Store has offers quality merchandise, fair prices, and friendly service in nine communities across North and South Carolina as well as Tennessee. Highly valuing good neighbor practices, each store invests itself in a variety of community partnerships throughout the year. Mast General Store is proud to partner with Merrell Footwear in support of Food For Kids 2012.

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