Appliance maker Whirlpool Corporation is donating up to U.S. $1 million in cash, products and services to Hurricane Katrina relief efforts. Products to be donated include refrigerators, clothes washers and dryers, all urgently needed by relief centers throughout the U.S. Gulf Coast.
The Whirlpool Foundation has already begun matching employee contributions to support the relief efforts. The funds raised will go to the American Red Cross to support the approximately 250 shelters across the Gulf that will house the victims in the months ahead, as well as the 15 emergency kitchens capable of feeding 350,000 people.
"The employees of Whirlpool Corporation have always been generous in reaching out to help others during times of need," said Jeff M. Fettig, Whirlpool's chairman, president and CEO. "A tragedy of this magnitude calls for the assistance of able individuals and organizations," added Fettig. "As a company, we are grateful to help relief efforts in the most fitting way possible."
Whirlpool will make an immediate cash contribution of $250,000 to the American Red Cross. The first shipment of washers and dryers is expected to arrive at Houston, Texas' Astrodome over the weekend. Additional shipments to other relief centers will follow shortly as directed by emergency relief agencies.
In addition, Whirlpool will take further steps to assist the victims in the months and years ahead with relief and rebuilding efforts in cooperation with the American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity International and other organizations. Among those steps are safety and repair guidance to consumers whose appliances may have been damaged by the hurricane, relocation and support to families moving to areas where Whirlpool has facilities and appliance shipments to long-stay relief centers. Whirlpool also will support qualified employees in providing direct involvement in the relief effort.
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