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Attack's Aftermath: Vendors, retailers help pitch in to the cause

New York — Home textiles vendors and retailers across the nation opened their hearts, wallets and shelves to assist in relief efforts following last week's terror attack that destroyed the World Trade Center here in New York. Here's a look at how they are helping:

  • Piedmont Home Textiles Corporation, headquartered in Sea Girt, NJ, has contributed $5,000 to the United Way September 11th Fund of New York City designated for the victims' families of the World Trade Center tragedy. The employees of Piedmont Home Textiles manufacturing in Walhalla, SC, have contributed an additional $1,033, making the total contribution $6,033.

  • Hellenic Rug Imports, Brooklyn, NY, is donating about 150 of its wool blankets to the rescue workers and volunteers working in New York. The company will drop them off as the weather gets cooler.

  • Croscill Home has pledged $200,000, half to The Twin Towers Fund and half to the United Jewish Appeal Israel Now Fund.

  • Dupont has donated $5 million to be primarily used for the education of the children of firefighters, police officers and other uniformed emergency personnel who lost their lives as a result of the attacks. A portion of the money will also be earmarked for the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund.

  • American Textile Company, in response to a request from the American Red Cross, has donated mattress and pillow protectors for New York City shelters.

  • Carpenter Co. has donated basic bedding for NYC shelters.

  • Hollander Home Fashions has made cash donations to relief organizations and organized a company blood drive.

  • Blankets and throws were donated by Guilford Home Fashions and its employees were encouraged to give blood.

  • Arley Corporation donated basic bedding and heavier fabric to be used as blankets.

  • Responding locally, Scala International has donated items to a local firehouse. The company's president and vp, Chip and Patricia Scala, have also tried to volunteer.

  • May Department Stores Co. said it's donating about $500,000 to assist with disaster relief and to aid those affected. The department store retailer said the May Department Stores Foundation is donating $400,000 to the American Red Cross and expects to donate another $100,000 through a Matching Gift program. The foundation will match employee contributions on a dollar-for-dollar basis to four organizations: the American Red Cross; the United Way's September 11th Fund; the Salvation Army; and the New York Police and Fire Widow's and Children's Benefit Fund. Each May division is also spearheading blood drives and contributions of clothing to relief workers.

  • Sears, Roebuck and Co. pledged a minimum of $1 million in immediate aid and is also partnering with the American Red Cross to coordinate future blood drives at stores in New York and New Jersey. Stores in those two states mobilized customers, employees and resources, donating electric generators and other supplies to relief workers. Sears stores have also begun accepting customer contributions at store cash registers.

  • Assisting relief efforts, the two New York Kmart stores have been providing supplies to rescue workers, such as blankets, gloves, Visine, dust masks, water, T-shirts and gloves. Kmart also pledged a corporate gift to the American Red Cross when its associate giving drive is concluded. In a patriotic spirit, the retailer also donated 50,000 hand-held American flags to the City of New York after Mayor Rudolph Giuliani asked Americans to "raise a flag." Acting to quell potential violence, Kmart also removed firearms and ammunition in the wake of the attacks.

  • Jo-Ann Stores showed support and honored victims and their families by giving away red, white and blue ribbons at all of its 900 stores over the weekend. "Our hope is that we can, in some small way, help people express what they feel in their hearts," said Alan Rosskamm, ceo.

  • Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse said all 713 stores nationwide will serve as a cash donation site for the American Red Cross, and committed to at least $1 million in aid through the program. Lowe's also provided much-needed facemasks and gloves to aid in the lengthy clean-up process.

  • Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, pledged $2 million for national relief efforts, including an immediate $1 million gift to the American Red Cross, and at least another $1 million in the near future for other agencies providing relief efforts to the victims and their families, Wal-Mart and Sam's Club stores also set up collection points for customer donations at more than 3,200 stores and clubs.

  • The Federated Department Stores Foundation made a $100,000 donation to the American Red Cross to assist in relief efforts and set up a dollar-for-dollar matching program for employee contributions, up to a total of $150,000.

  • J.C. Penney said it's giving at least $700,000 in cash and merchandise contributions to assist in the New York relief effort. Penney provided socks, T-shirts and underwear to the American Red Cross for distribution to rescue workers and also offered blankets and towels. Penney is also selling car-mounted American flags at its department stores, with all proceeds contributed to the relief effort.

  • Target: Visitors to Target's home page saw information on donating blood and where to send money to the American Red Cross, as well as phone numbers where Target employees should call if they are traveling. A statement read, "All of us at Target Corporation are deeply saddened by these tragedies and join together in support of the families and friends who have been affected." A link to Target's regular website was given.

  • Hanover Direct: The Company Store and Domestications e-mailed customers, asking them to donate blood and money. It also donated sheets and towels to the rescue effort.

  • The Home Depot: Donated $1 million to the United Way, as well as launching a two-week collection effort this past Friday at all Home Depot, Expo and Villager's Hardware stores in the United States and Canada. Blood drives will begin at store locations beginning Sept. 28. All monetary donations will be given to the United Way's The September 11th Fund, to aid families affected by the attacks. Home Depot also has donated power tools, flashlights, metal cutters, hardhats and generators to agencies in New York, pressure-treated lumber to secure the Pentagon in Washington, and outfitted local law enforcement and rescue personnel with masks, tools and gloves.

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