Even as the full extent of Hurricane Sandy’s impact is still being assessed, the Office Depot Foundation - the independent foundation serving as the primary charitable giving arm of Office Depot (NYSE:ODP) - is taking steps to assist with relief and recovery efforts.

The Foundation today announced that it will donate 25,000 kid-friendly sackpacks and $30,000 to help children, families and pets in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and other areas affected by the massive storm. These donations include:
  • 25,000 Office Depot Foundation sackpacks containing essential school supplies to the international relief organization Feed The Children to help children in the affected areas begin to regain a sense of normalcy.
  • $25,000 to Feed The Children to support relief efforts for thousands of families by providing more than 150,000 pounds of food and essential supplies.
  • $5,000 to the Disaster Relief Fund of the Humane Society of the United States. The Humane Society’s Animal Rescue Team is already assisting animals and people in the wake of Hurricane Sandy's destruction.

The Foundation and Feed The Children have been partners for more than a decade. “As always, the Office Depot Foundation is the first to reach out to those less fortunate, doing what it can to make a difference,” said Feed The Children spokesperson Tony Sellars.

The Office Depot Foundation is helping small businesses get back on their feet through its ongoing sponsorship of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Business Civic Leadership Center’s National Disaster Help Desk for Business, which is accessible 24 hours a day at 1-888-MY-BIZ-HELP (888-692-4943) or via e-mail at bclchelpdesk@uschamber.com. Businesses that need access to expert guidance and resources for recovery and rebuilding as well as those seeking the best way to make donations are encouraged to contact the Help Desk.

“Disaster relief, recovery and rebuilding are among our key strategic priorities,” said Office Depot Foundation President Mary Wong. “The steps we are taking are consistent with our actions following Hurricane Isaac just two months ago, as well as the catastrophic tornadoes in 2011 and the wildfires in Colorado earlier this year. On behalf of the entire Office Depot family, we are proud to be able to make a difference at this difficult time.”

About the Office Depot Foundation

The Office Depot Foundation is an independent foundation − tax exempt under IRC Sec. 501(c)(3) − that serves as the independent charitable giving arm of Office Depot, Inc. In keeping with its mission, Listen Learn Care ®, the Foundation supports a variety of programs that help children succeed in school and in life; enable civil society (non-profit) organizations to become more efficient and effective; assist people and businesses in preparing for disasters, then recovering and rebuilding afterwards; strengthen local communities through grants, product donations and volunteerism; and encourage community development through entrepreneurship and economic innovation. For more information, visit www.officedepotfoundation.org. The Foundation can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/officedepotfoundation and @OfficeDepotFndn on Twitter.

Copyright Business Wire 2010