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Dear friends, colleagues and supporters,
In the midst of unstable economic conditions, K.I.D.S. continues to successfully work through fluctuations in the markets and reductions in excess inventory to serve the poor, the neglected and the dependent. Because of its central importance, we at K.I.D.S. have designated 2012 as "Clothes4K.I.D.S." year because apparel, undergarments and outerwear are the most essential items that children require to attend and function in school. And, while we have diversified to include such other products as books, dvds, home goods, personal care items, shoes and baby gear, our greatest need still remains the clothes that kids put on their backs.
As you will see described in the pages throughout this Newsletter, our national "Clothes4K.I.D.S." campaign is taking us around the United States from California to Florida; from Houston to Georgia. In communities throughout the country, we are linking product donors with community recipients in order for the impact of merchandise to be seen and felt. In Miami, Florida, we will be distributing Gerber children's wear items to low income families; in Atlanta, Georgia, we'll be providing Carter's apparel to families of the military being assigned to overseas duty. The event in Georgia will take place around Mother's Day in order to pay homage to the important role that wives left behind play in maintaining equilibrium in the family during tours of duty.
In addition to our major product drive, we are undertaking "state" campaigns around other essential product segments that we are distributing this year. In Atlanta, we distributed much needed Graco strollers and car seats to families living under the poverty line. In California, in partnership with Fashion Delivers, we will provide 3,500 pairs of new Skechers shoes to those in need. In North Carolina we will be donating a mix of product to urban kids who are being motivated through the Cal Ripkin, Sr. Foundation to gain skills and incentive through baseball training and play.
Also included in these "state" and national events are fundraisers in local communities. These are being hosted or attended by foundations, corporations and individuals who are associated with K.I.D.S. While our main source of funding comes from our Gala, Women's Luncheon and community foundations, the opportunity to involve local citizens in our mission is an important part of the K.I.D.S. outreach. And, speaking of our Women's Luncheon, please refer to the flier in our Newsletter which features this upcoming event. Taking place on May 31st, our 6th Annual WIIL (Women in Industry Luncheon) event features Sandy Wax, President of PBS Sprout Kids; Sharon John, President of Stride Rite Children's Group and Kathy Ireland, CEO of Kathy Ireland Worldwide. Our luncheons are one of the most inspirational events of the year and an opportunity to learn, in a moving experience, about K.I.D.S. and what it means to women of achievement. Looking forward to seeing you either on May 31st in New York City or around the country at our local events.
With continued gratitude,