New York - Samsung Electronics America launched a national and retail charity program to benefit children, called Samsung's Four Seasons Of Hope, at a gala lunch yesterday which was keynoted by former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani at Pier 60 of the Chelsea Piers, here.
The program brings together four well-known athletes and the charities endorsed by them: Arnold Palmer, Boomer Esiason; Joe Torre and Magic Johnson. In addition four major national retailers have joined the program as partners, according to Samsung: Best Buy, CompUSA, RadioShack and Sears.
The athletes will make special appearances for Samsung all year long and will be seen in a major national print campaign in conjunction with national retailers that will spotlight the charities involved. The program begins with baseball and football advertising campaigns.
Each retailer will back a specific sport as part of the campaign: Best Buy for basketball, Sears for football, CompUSA for golf and Radio Shack for baseball. The retailers role will be to encourage their customers to donate to the program by offering special prices such as a trip to the Super Bowl or a chance to shoot hoops with Magic Johnson. The retailers will tie a variety of sales promotions to Samsung's Four Seasons of Hope making donations to the cause when customers purchase specified products.
In his remarks Giuliani noted the generosity of New Yorkers and Americans in the wake of September 11, donating their time and billions of dollars to charities that would aid and comfort the victims of the attacks and their families. But the emphasis on September 11, 'Put a strain on other charities and causes.' He noted that Samsung's Four Seasons of Hope is an attempt to 'extend [and] improve the quality of life.'
The athletes involved and their respective charities are:
Arnold Palmer and the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children & Women: Located in Orlando, Florida the hospital is dedicated to serving the unique needs of children and women. Samsung will provide technology products including computers and TVs for the children's hospital, as well as the new women and infant's hospital under construction. The hospital is one of only six of its kind in the nation.
Boomer Esiason and the Boomer Esiason Foundation to Benefit Cystic Fibrosis: Created by the former NFL quarterback and his wife in 1993 after their son was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, the foundation works to raise money to find a cure for the genetic disease. To date more than $12 million has been raised for the cause. Samsung will donate money to the foundation during Super Bowl week.
Magic Johnson & The Magic Johnson Foundation: Following his retirement from the NBA in 1991 Johnson established the foundation, which aims to improve the lives of inner city children. Samsung will support technology centers for inner-city youths and fund scholarship programs and social and cultural programs.
Joe Torre & the Joe Torre Family Foundation: In conjunction with Samsung's Four Seasons of Hope, the New York Yankees manager has launched this new charity dedicated to supporting women and children exposed to domestic violence. This year's beneficiary will be the Center Against Domestic Violence, which is based in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Torre told TWICE that his battle against domestic violence is a personal one. 'My wife Ali and I have wanted to establish the foundation for some time, especially in since September 11. The foundation is dedicated to my mother, Margaret. I grew up in an abusive household. While my father never abused me physically, I was afraid all the time. But he did abuse my mother. Of course when I was growing up no one ever talked about domestic violence. Even today families that victimized by this stay together.'
He added, 'What we like to believe is that the Foundation can educate people, especially teens, about this problem, and provide support, services and resources to those families in need.'
For more information on Samsung's Four Seasons of Hope, visit www.fourseasonsofhope.com.