In 1987, Sam Walton, founder of Walmart, committed his company and its resources to raising money for children’s hospitals with the promise that “the associates will amaze you.” Nearly 30 years later, that statement has proven true. Both Walmart and Sam’s Club share the belief that every child and family deserves the chance to live better. It’s at the very core of their being – and is played out through their associates' commitment to fundraising for Children’s Miracle Network.
Walmart and Sam’s Club stores have been partners of CMN for 28 years, raising more than $750 million for children’s hospitals around the country. In 2015, Walmart and Sam’s Club associates raised more than $40 million during their six-week register campaign alone. And the stores in the Washington DC area raised nearly $1 million for Children’s National. In recognition of their success, the 1.4 million “unnamed Walmart associates” of Walmart and Sam’s Club stores throughout the United States and Canada were awarded the Founder’s Award, CMN Hospital’s highest honor given to advocates for children’s hospitals.
Year-round, Walmart and Sam’s Club associates find new and exciting ways to contribute time and money to Children’s National. Some stores keep a “wishing well” for coins and donations in the storefront or host bake sales or cookouts in the parking lot; many managers get creative, like the local manager who elected to “sit in jail” until he reached his fundraising goal for the day. Many associates make personal contributions and volunteer their time to Children’s National by sewing newborn hats, hosting carnivals for patients, and volunteering at the hospital.
While Walmart and Sam’s Club stores fundraise in many ways, their largest fundraiser is a six-week register campaign during which cashiers ask customers for donations. Associates in the area are so passionate about the campaign and about connecting with the children treated at Children’s National that they’ll often invite patients from the hospital to come help them at their register. “The fact that our fundraising efforts go help local hospitals gives each of our stores a feeling of helping our own,” said Regional General Manager Bob Davis. “The work you do for the most vulnerable in our population – our children – is phenomenal.”
One thing is for certain: through fundraisers and register donations, Mr. Walton’s associates continue to amaze.
The Miracle Balloon campaign will be happening at a Walmart and Sam’s Club store near you from August 29 through October 9.