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Safeway has launched a month-long fundraising and awareness campaign keyed to what is described as an innovative partnership with Easter Seals and Special Olympics that is designed to raise millions of dollars to fund regional rehabilitation services and autism programs, job training grants, and adopt athletes so they can participate in Special Olympics games throughout the country.

In addition to the fund raising that will take place at Safeway’s various banners and 1,700 stores, the company also is focused on providing job opportunities for people with disabilities. (Safeway says that it currently employs more than 10,000 people with special needs.)

This year Safeway will use the funds raised in April to fund community disability centers operated by Easter Seals that are located in communities where Safeway operates stores. These facilities provide rehabilitation, training and autism services to people with disabilities. Easter Seals will use a portion of the funds to create a special grants program that will be dedicated to provide job training grants and expand autism programs. In Canada, Easter Seals will use funding to develop a “Kids to Camp” program that will allow thousands of children to learn and further develop intellectually and physically. Additionally, through a unique partnership with Special Olympics, Safeway will help fund the Special Olympics mission to provide year-round sports training an competition to people with disabilities which in turn build acceptance in communities.

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