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Whole Foods Kicks Off Campaign to Fund Micro Loans; Offers Chance To Win Philanthropy Trip

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This past week Whole Foods Market’s non-profit arm, Whole Planet Foundation, kicks off its 2011 Prosperity Campaign at its stores nationwide with the goal of raising $2.5 million to fund microcredit projects in poor communities around the world.

From February 23 to March 31, Whole Foods Market will offer fundraising opportunities ranging from tasting events to silent auctions, and the option to donate directly to the foundation at store checkouts or online at WholePlanetFoundation.org, where shoppers can also create personalized fundraising profiles.  For the first time ever, the foundation will also give away a trip for two to Peru from Intrepid Travel to offer shoppers a chance to see, firsthand, how their donations are helping to alleviate poverty worldwide.

“Microcredit sparks change by providing the poor a viable chance to lift themselves out of poverty through their own hard work and ingenuity,” said Philip Sansone, president and executive director of the Whole Planet Foundation. “We’re thrilled to share that impact by offering donors a chance to meet producers in the field who directly benefit from their support.”

The 10-day adventure from historic Lima to majestic Machu Picchu kicks off with a visit to the foundation’s microcredit clients and partners in Peru. To enter and for more details, visit: wholefoodsmarket.com/peru by March 31.

“A loan as small as $200 can make a huge difference. For example, one microcredit client might use her loan to invest in a sewing machine to make clothing to sell, and another might buy a goat to begin a milk and cheese production business.” said Sansone. “If we reach our fundraising goal, we will be able to provide enough loans to support more than 13,500 recipients and their families, empowering more than 65,000 people in poor communities to change their own lives.”

The foundation has funded more than $16 million in microlending programs in 30 countries in the past five years.


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