LOUISVILLE, KY, October 19, 2007 – The global movement to stop world hunger is catching on around the globe. Celebrities, an Emmy Award winning composer and athlete joining in this mission include, former “Dancing With The Stars” sensation Mario Lopez, Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt of MTV’s hit reality show, “The Hills”, Emmy Award winning composer Peter Buffett, and Detroit Lions Pro Bowler Roy Williams.
From car washes in London and Canada, handbag and art auctions, bake sales and can food drive efforts in the United States, text messaging fundraising challenges in South Africa to employees traveling to places like Guatemala to deliver relief supplies, Yum! Brands employees are sharing stories to inspire others. Unbridled creativity and a contagious spirit of volunteerism spread throughout Yum! Brands’ (NYSE: YUM) worldwide network of nearly one million employees in approximately 35,000 restaurants in 112 countries, spurring a global movement across borders and for the world’s 850 million hunger citizens.
Yum! Brands, KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, Long John Silver’s and A&W All-American Food restaurants are spearheading a unique initiative with the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP), the world’s largest humanitarian hunger relief agency, to raise awareness and funds to fight global hunger during “World Hunger Relief Week” (WHRW) now through October 20, 2007.
Emmy Award winning composer Peter Buffett, best known for his work on “Dances With Wolves” and “Spirit -The Seventh Fire,” composed a song and music video capturing his experiences during a recent trip to West Africa to raise awareness for hunger relief. The free music video is available on www.fromhungertohope.com. For more information visit www.peterbuffett.com.
Mario Lopez worked alongside KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell associates at the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank to raise awareness for WHRW. “The Hills” stars Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt challenged Taco Bell customers to join the cause at a World Hunger ‘Reality Check’ in Los Angeles. Meanwhile, Detroit Lions’ Roy Williams delivered Pizza Hut pizzas – donating his tips and $5,000 of his own money to the cause.
In the United States, KFC’s famed Colonel took a cross country “Honk for Hunger” road trip, visiting a host of cities including New York, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Oklahoma City, Albuquerque, Las Vegas and Los Angeles, during his seven-day tour. Each time someone “honked” when seeing the Colonel, the company donated $1 to Friends of the WFP, resulting in about 25,000 honks so far.
In addition to the well-known, Yum! Brands employees worldwide have created unique ways of raising awareness and funds to fight hunger, including:
- Yum! Brands chairman and CEO David Novak, along with hundreds of other employees kicked off WHRW and marked the company’s 10th anniversary with a virtual ringing of the New York Stock Exchange opening bell from Louisville, Ky., on Oct. 15. Afterwards Novak and the rest of Yum!’s executive team served hot lunches to the hungry at a local food bank.
- KFC South Africa launched WHRW with a unique “Spread a Smile” campaign throughout its 470 stores. “Spread a Smile” badges and creative point-of-sale posters, fliers and window clings were in restaurants to generate interest in hunger relief for the WFP.
- Pizza Hut employees in the United Kingdom climbed Wales’ highest mountain as part of a leadership team event and fundraiser which netted $9,000 USD for WFP.
- Yum! Restaurants International’s chief marketing officer Micky Pant ran the 26 mile Flora London marathon as a fund and awareness raiser for the WFP, raising $15,000 in donations.
- A Taco Bell franchisee in Gainesville, Fla., initiated a payroll deduction to encourage his 850 employees to give to the Friends of WFP. Demonstrating his own commitment to fighting world hunger, the franchisee agreed to personally match his employees’ contributions up to $10,000.
People worldwide are encouraged to share their own stories, photos and videos on www.fromhungertohope.com, with a special Google map feature showing more examples of Yum! employees’ efforts as well as how hunger is being combated globally. Donations will continue to be accepted at restaurants throughout the WHRW, as well as online indefinitely.