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BELLEVUE, Wash. -- This month, Coinstar, Inc. and its customers crossed the $20 million mark in consumer coin donations to nonprofit organizations since its Coins That Count program started in 1997, the company reported.
Organizations such as The American Red Cross, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, The March of Dimes, The U.S. Fund for UNICEF, and The World Wildlife Fund have benefited from the donations.
"Caring everyday is a core value that Coinstar has held from the beginning," said Alex Camara, senior vice president and general manager of worldwide coin. "The Coins that Count program is key in delivering that value. This program represents an ongoing relationship between Coinstar, the non-profit community, and our retail customers that is truly gratifying for us as a company."
Additionally, Coinstar recently teamed up with The Ellen DeGeneres Show to raise much needed funds for America's Second Harvest -- the Nation's Food Bank Network, the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States and each dollar donated will provide 16 meals to hungry Americans, the company stated.
Coinstar's donation program was first introduced in the greater Seattle area nine years ago and has grown from processing approximately $200,000 per year in 1997 to processing more than $4 million nationally in 2005. During this time, the Coinstar network has been used to raise funds for relief efforts in disasters such as 9/11, the 2004 Tsunami and Hurricane Katrina.
In addition to turning coins into cash or gift cards, Coinstar Centers provide consumers with the option to donate their spare change to national non-profit organizations, as well as many local organizations. The donation feature is available on most of the more than 13,000 machines within the Coinstar network.
Consumers simply select the "donate" option at the beginning of the transaction and follow the on-screen prompts to select the non-profit organization of their choice from the list provided. Users then pour in their change, the machine counts the coins, and then provides a tax-deductible receipt for the full value of the donation.