Ford Motor Company and 13 metro Phoenix-area Ford dealerships recently teamed up with Famous Dave’s BBQ restaurants and Big Surf Waterpark in support of The Salvation Army’s Red Shield Survival Squad to collect bottled water. As a result of the 5th annual “Fill an F-150” water drive, approximately 136,000 bottles of water were collected at Valley Ford dealerships and Famous Dave’s restaurants.
“The Salvation Army is grateful to the Metro Phoenix Ford dealers for their annual support of our Hydrate Arizona campaign,” said Salvation Army Emergency Disaster Services Director Major Wayne Froderberg. “With 14 days of excessive heat warnings so far in June and temperatures approaching 120 degrees, clean drinking water becomes a life and death issue. Thanks to the partnership with Ford Motor Company, we are able to provide relief to hundreds of our neighbors exposed to extreme conditions.”
Anyone who donated a case of water received a half-off voucher to Big Surf Waterpark in Tempe, Ariz., redeemable this summer and a coupon for a free brisket sandwich at Famous Dave’s. Glendale-based Sanderson Ford collected more bottles of water than any other Ford dealership at more than 81,000 bottles. Berge Ford of Mesa collected more than 13,000 bottles followed by Bell Ford of Phoenix at 12,000 bottles.
“This is our fifth year hosting a bottled water drive in support of The Salvation Army and, in total, we’ve collected just shy of half a million bottles of water,” said Brad Jones, Phoenix Regional Manager for Ford Motor Company. “Our dealers strive to go further in the communities where we do business. Thanks to all our dealerships as well as our partners at Famous Dave’s and Big Surf for your efforts in making this 5th annual bottled water drive a success.”
The Salvation Army’s Hydrate Arizona campaign was launched in 2006 to distribute water and provide cooling and safety information to those in need at heat relief stations in Metro Phoenix on days with excessive heat warnings. According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, more than 1,500 weather-related deaths from exposure to heat have occurred in Arizona since 2000 (see link for heat safety tips and more info).
In addition to conducting the Valley-wide bottled water drive, the Ford Motor Company Fund’s Operation Better World Phoenix program has granted $10,000 to The Salvation Army this year in support of the important programs they offer to our community like the water drive.
Ford Motor Company Fund is the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company. Founded in 1949, the Ford Fund has invested more than $1.5 billion in communities around the world.