Companies in the Triangle and Triad region of North Carolina have a new way to help themselves as well as their community: donate their fleet vehicles to charity.
That’s what Kerr Cares for Kids, the charitable foundation of Kerr Drug did recently with the non-profit group Wheels4Hope. The non-profit agency recycles the cars and places the vehicles with low-wage earning families in the community to provide affordable transportation.
Kerr Drug, through its foundation, made its third vehicle donation to Wheels4Hope on November 10, 2011 at the Kerr Drug on Buck Jones Road in Raleigh, donated a car to Wheels4Hope. In the spring, two Dodge Caravans were also donated to the organization. The vans were high mileage (200,000+ miles) but were well maintained and in good condition. All three vehicles received minor repairs through a $7500 grant from Kerr Drug and have been given to families.
“Without reliable, affordable transportation, families will struggle to find work, stay employed, go to school and care for their children,” says Anthony “Tony” Civello, CEO of Kerr Drug. “All of those factors affect a family’s health and as a community pharmacy, Kerr Drug wants to do whatever it can to improve the health of the people in our community.”
Wheels4Hope finds the families to use the donated cars by referrals through partnerships with 15 organizations including Habitat for Humanity, StepUp Ministry, Raleigh Rescue Mission and the Red Cross. Volunteer mechanics repair the vehicles. While many charities advertise the donation of vehicles, because Wheels4Hope repairs the vehicles and resells them, donors receive a more favorable tax deduction for the vehicle.
Wheels4Hope requires recipients to pay $500 for their car and be responsible for title and transfer fees.
Wheels4Hope also stands behind each vehicle with a six month warranty
“Kerr Cares for Kids’ donations are a sign of its belief in the concept of community pharmacy because the three vehicles have been so important to the families in the community,” says John Bush, Wheels4Hope Executive Director.” “I hope more companies will follow their lead because Wheels4Hope is truly a win-win program for everyone involved: a vehicle gets recycled back into the community in a new life, a family gets affordable transportation, and the donor gets a tax deduction.”
Kerr Drug’s Director of Customer Relations and Administration Phyllis Patterson, who serves as Executive Director of the foundation, presented the keys to the vehicle to Bush and Wheels4Hope board chair Mike DeSorbo who then turned the keys over to Bobby Atkinson and his family who are buying the car. Several Wheels4Hope volunteers who served the vehicle were also on hand as were representatives of StepUP ministry, who referred the Atkinson family to the program.
Information about the organizations involved is listed below:
About Kerr Cares for Kids
Kerr Cares for Kids is a charitable foundation managed by Kerr Drug. Its mission is to provide a solid base of support to various child and adolescent centered charities and health alliance principally through the Carolina region. The foundation will focus on organizations and activities which directly benefit children and adolescents who are disadvantaged, disabled, or suffer from disease.
About Kerr Drug
Kerr Drug is one of the most recognized and respected names in the chain drug industry. With its roots in the Carolinas and headquarters in Raleigh, N.C., Kerr Drug’s strategic direction is founded in its unique ability to provide patients, the medical community, and health plans access to the most comprehensive and convenient health and wellness offering in the industry. With a mission to be the most comprehensive provider of pharmacy and related healthcare services, while continuing to be the most reliable provider of health-related and convenience items, Kerr is currently providing services that far exceed the traditional drug store mix. For more information, please visit www.kerrdrug.com.
Wheels4Hope is a faith-based, volunteer-driven, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping low-income families and individuals by providing them reliable, affordable vehicles. The primary mission of Wheels4Hope is to sell Program Cars to qualified recipients who are referred by Partner Agencies. Program Cars are vehicles that are in sound mechanical condition and are valued in the $2,000-4,000 range. Believing in the principle of ownership and with a commitment to partnership, Wheels4Hope requires recipients to pay $500 for their car and be responsible for title and transfer fees. In the process of providing affordable cars, Wheels4Hope also stands behind each program car with a 6-month warranty.