Christmas Dream drive

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Sam’s Club football wives, and Salvation Army partner to bless families

For the second year, Sam’s Club partnered with Off the Field Players’ Wives Association and The Salvation Army to help families in Atlanta, Buffalo, Chicago, Dallas and San Diego at Christmas through the company’s annual Dream Drive event.

On Dec. 4, Dream Drive hosted a number of current and legendary professional football players’ wives from Off the Field on a shopping spree at participating Sam’s Club locations, selecting much needed items and gifts for approximately 50 needy families identified by The Salvation Army.

“We are pleased we can partner with Off the Field to provide food, gifts and personal items to The Salvation Army and families participating in their holiday programs,” said Sharon Orlopp, vice president of People at Sam’s Club.

This year participants from Off the Field who began the shopping spree by ringing bells outside select Sam’s Club locations to encourage donations included Sherice Brown, wife of retired Oakland Raiders flanker Tim Brown, and Ashley Brown, wife of retired Washington Redskins offensive lineman and current Buffalo Bills Coach Ray Brown.

“I was a Dream Drive shopper last year, and I was astonished by the needs in my community,” said Sherice Brown, Off The Field board member. “Even though the needs were big, the other wives and I were able to get most of the items on The Salvation Army family wish lists and more at Sam’s Club.”

This year, Sam’s Club and Wal-Mart stores again welcome The Salvation Army bell-ringers and red kettles to store entrances nationwide from Nov. 28 through Dec. 24. In 2007, the Army raised $30 million in front of Sam’s Club and Wal-Mart stores. The Wal-Mart Foundation also donated $1.25 million to the Army this holiday season.

“The Salvation Army is striving to make this a season of joy for so many families in need during a particularly difficult year,” said Major George Hood, national community relations secretary. “This effort will go a long way to help lift spirits and provide for often unmet but simple needs such as personal items, food and small gifts.”

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