Thanks to Generosity of Sponsors, 94% of Proceeds Go Directly to Orphan Care, Adoption and Foster Care
NASHVILLE - Approximately 200 C-level retail executives, vendors and retail industry influencers came together for RetailROI's "Super Saturday" research event in New York on Jan. 8, 2011, raising nearly $300,000 for orphan care.
Super Saturday, held the day before the annual NRF Show, brought together retail's most prominent thinkers for a day of predictions, insight and analysis. Proceeds from the one-of-a-kind event, underwritten by sponsors and free to retailers, are already at work helping to serve vulnerable children around the world. The funds are being used to:
- Build the first school in Marshall, Liberia, in partnership with Lifesong for Orphans, so that 84 kids can go to school for the first time since the end of the civil war. The project is underway and scheduled for completion in March.
- Build a computer lab in Honduras to serve 450 children. This project was made possible exclusively by vendor tie-ins at NRF. A group of 10 retailers and analysts from RetailROI are going to Honduras to install this lab at the end of February.
- Help build the Joseph School, a school for 350 orphaned children to train the next generation of leaders in Haiti.
- Provide flooring, washing machines, dryers and dishwashers for the Starfish Foster Home for special-needs orphans in China, allowing them to move up to 50 special needs children into a new home after losing their lease.
- Help complete the Cornerstone Children's Home in Southern Sudan, so that 84 children orphaned from the war and HIV can be brought into a safe, protected and loving environment.
- Extend the Safe Families Program to more cities in the U.S., providing children a safe, secure alternative to foster care.
- Help Show Hope provide training and curriculum for families adopting from hard places, to help them better connect to their children.
"The impact of RetailROI Super Saturday is literally extending around the world," said Greg Buzek, donor trustee for the Retail Orphan Initiative. "Retailers, vendors, analysts and others came to NRF early to make a difference this year, and what an amazing difference they made."
After only its second year, RetailROI Super Saturday has quickly become recognized as a valuable addition to the annual NRF Show - "the best way to kick off your NRF Big Show experience, bar none," according to Joe Skorupa, Group Editor-in-Chief for Edgell Communications and RIS News.
The highlight of this year's Super Saturday was 15-year-old Austin Gutwein, who founded Hoops of Hope, the biggest basketball shoot-a-thon in the world. Austin started the event when he was only 9 years old, and Hoops of Hope has since raised nearly $2 million for children orphaned by AIDS/HIV. His organization has funded a medical clinic, a high school, and four dormitories in Zambia and is extending its reach into Swaziland. "Austin showed us the amazing impact one life can make," Buzek added. "If a 9-year-old child can impact the countries of Zambia and Swaziland, what can a group of some of the finest companies in the world do to help orphans and vulnerable children?"
Sponsors for the 2011 RetailROI SuperSaturday event included:
- Title Sponsor: HP
- Platinum Sponsors: Intel, PwC, Epicor, RIS News, Sprint, Sterling Commerce and Oracle.
- Executive Sponsors: Verizon Business, C-CORE Consulting Group, Epson, Axsium, TradeStone, Reflexis, Ignisis, Microsoft
- Founding Level Sponsors: Agilysys, TekservePOS, Retail Touchpoints, IBM, Cisco, RetailConnections and IHL Group.
- Special thanks to Retail Touchpoints, 4690 World, C-CORE Consulting, TekservePOS and Starbucks for sponsoring the food, and to Visions Advertising for graphics, brochures and banners.
RetailROI is a charitable foundation under the umbrella of the Giving Back Fund, established to help the 400 million orphaned and vulnerable children worldwide; RetailROI provides grants to charities that provide hands-on efforts in the following areas:
- Orphan Care (food, shelter, medical, clothing, education)
- Foster Care support organizations
- Adoption support organizations
- Grants and zero-interest loans for adoption
- Child rescue from human traffickingLife skills training for orphaned and vulnerable children