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    BP, VERC and Love's Donate

    Companies raise money for Children's Miracle Network and educational institutions.

    OKLAHOMA CITY -- Charity continues in the convenience store industry, as Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores, BP and VERC recently completed various donations.

    Love’s, based here, raised $760,000 during its annual fundraiser for Children’s Miracle Network, an increase of 84 percent from $415,000 in 2007 and the highest total in the 10-year history of the campaign, the company reported.

    Since beginning its affiliation with Children’s Miracle Network in 1998, Love’s and its customers have raised more than $2.5 million to help sick children in the communities where it operates stores.

    "In spite of the current economic climate, our employees and customers managed to raise a record amount for Children’s Miracle Network," said Tom Love, founder and chairman of Love’s. "We are proud that their efforts will help provide state-of-the art medical care to seriously ill children across the country."

    Each September, Love’s invites its customers to help raise funds for Children’s Miracle Network through in-store purchases of paper heart icons valued at $1, $5 and $25. Love’s stores raised additional funds through grassroots activities such as car washes, bake sales, and pumping gas for tips.

    In addition to the money raised by Love’s customers and employees, the Love family marked the 10th anniversary of its affiliation with Children’s Miracle Network by donating $50,000 to the campaign. The donation was made Sept. 4, at the grand opening of the newest Love's location in Oklahoma City.

    Additionally, Walter Neil, director for public relations for BP Carson Refinery, presented a check in the amount of $50,000 to California State University, Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) to create the BP Scholarship, the company reported.

    The donation was made during the College of Business Administration and Public Policy’s annual awards luncheon, at which BP was honored as Organization of the Year.

    In presenting the check, Neil talked of BP’s strong support of CSU Dominguez Hills and its mission to educate the local community. The check represents a continuation of that commitment, he said.

    The $50,000 BP Scholarship will provide five $2,000 scholarships annually over a five-year period to first-time freshman or community college transfer students living in Carson, Long Beach or Wilmington who seek degrees in either chemistry, physics, mathematics, business administration or environmental sciences. The first scholarships will be awarded for fall 2009.

    In other charity news, VERC Enterprises presented the South River Elementary School in Marshfield with a check for $500, a grant made possible through the Mobil Educational Alliance Program, the company said.

    Presenting the check to South River Principal Linda Loiselle and Student Council members Jenny Vo and Sean Callahan were Anna Cononico, VERC District Manager and Shan Muhammad, manager of the VERC Mobil Pembroke.

    The $500 grant will be used for the enhancement or purchase of math and science programs and materials.

    Since 2000, the Mobil Educational Alliance Program has contributed more than $13 million to local schools through its retailers.

    "We’re proud to participate in such a fine program that recognizes and supports the quality of local schools," said Leo Vercollone, CEO of VERC Enterprises.

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