Denim donation draws nearly 3,500 pairs of jeans

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Mervyns partners with the Army to collect jeans.

Major Bill Heiselman, administrator, and Michael Barnett, director of transportation, sort through jean donations at the Oakland ARC. [Photo by David Longbrake]

In a late August “Use Your Blues” event, Mervyns partnered with The Salvation Army to collect 3,464 pairs of clean, gently used jeans from customers in exchange for $5 off a new denim purchase.

The donations will be resold in local Salvation Army thrift stores, with proceeds benefiting the Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC) programs.

“Mervyns has a longstanding partnership with The Salvation Army,” said Desiree Aquino, a spokesperson for Mervyns. “’Use Your Blues’ is a convenient way for our customers to make a positive impact in their communities while shopping at their local Mervyns.”

Stores in Arizona, California, New Mexico, Nevada, Texas and Utah collected denim donations. The top three contributions came from California stores in Oxnard, Lakewood, and Montebello.

As the number of individuals and families seeking help from the Army’s social service offices continues to rise, these kinds of donations help83 cents of every dollar generated from the resale of donated items is returned directly to the community where donations are received.

The ARC in Oakland, Calif., which houses 132 men, received over 200 pairs of jeans from seven Mervyns stores.

“As The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Centers strive to ‘Do the Most Good,’ we definitely realize that we cannot do this by ourselves,” said Major William Heiselman, administrator of the Oakland ARC. “We need the help of other resources to get the job done and are grateful to Mervyns for partnering with us with in this very successful effort.”

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