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NEW YORK -- Three convenience retailers have launched holiday giving programs -- Chevron, Love's Travel Stops and Country Stores and Stewart's Shops -- allowing customers to provide some holiday cheer for others in their communities.
Chevron Global Marketing launched its holiday gift card incentive, where customers who purchase a $50 Chevron gift card at participating locations can select a toy car from the Chevron Cars family to donate to the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program, which celebrates its 60th year, the company stated.
Customers can select their favorite from three popular Chevron toy cars -- Maddie Mudster, Frankie 4-Wheeler and Riley Roadster -- to donate to disadvantaged children as part of the annual Toys for Tots Program. To participate, the gift cards must be purchased from Chevron locations by Dec. 31, 2007.
The Toys for Tots Program provides gifts to disadvantaged children who otherwise might be overlooked during the holiday season, the company stated. In 2006, Marine Toys for Tots Foundation delivered more than 19.2 million toys to more than 7.6 million children.
The Chevron toy cars will be delivered to select Toys for Tots drop-off locations by Dec. 31, 2007, according to the company.
In other holiday giving news, Oklahoma city-based Love's Travel Stops and Country Stores will provide fuel to bring members of the state’s 45th Infantry Brigade home for the holidays, The Associated Press reported.
The company will donate the gasoline needed to ferry more than 2,600 soldiers training at Fort Bliss, Texas, to Oklahoma, Love's chairman Tom Love told the AP. The soldiers have 10 days of leave beginning Dec. 23, and are set to deploy from Texas in January, the report stated.
"Love's is an Oklahoma company and proud of it," Love told the AP. "We're delighted to be able to do this."
The donation is part of Operation Holiday Homecoming, a project launched by Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry, which asked residents to donate $600,000 to pay for 60 buses and meals for the nearly 2,000 mile round trip, the AP reported.
Major Gen. Harry M. Wyatt III, Oklahoma's adjutant general, told the AP Love's contribution would make "2,600 Oklahoma soldiers, and a lot more Oklahoma citizens, very happy."
"It is a huge expense to get back home," he said, adding that the program is likely the only way many soldiers can come home for the holidays.
The buses will take soldiers to Oklahoma City, Tulsa or McAlester, Okla., and also return the soldiers to Texas.
To date, about $100,000 has been raised, along with several buses, Michael Taylor, state commander of the American Legion, told the AP.
"It's a generous gift, and it's going to go a long way toward ensuring members of the 45th are going to be able to spend the holidays with their loved ones," spokesman for the governor, Phil Bacharach, told the AP.
Meanwhile, Albany television station TWEAN reported that the Stewart's Shops chain of convenience stores launched a program that allows customers to help local children's charities.
"We benefit boys' clubs, girls' clubs, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, YMCA, hospitals, any program that benefits kids younger than 18," Stewart's Foundation president Susan Dake told the station.
Through a partnership with Time Warner Cable and the local television station, the Stewart's Holiday Match program will match the amount of money customers donate at the convenience chain, which will fund the Capital Region's children's charities, the report stated.
In 2006, the program raised more than $1 million, according to the report.