“With this year’s Veteran’s Day falling on 11/11/11, the timing seemed perfect to say thank-you to the men and women serving our great country. For those who are here, we can say thank-you with a free Slurpee. For those serving, we hope to raise enough funds to help the USO distribute 40,000 care packages,” says 7-Eleven CEO.
On Friday, Nov. 11, qualifying customers will just need to present proof of current or former U.S. military service during those hours to receive a free Slurpee drink. Accompanying family members also will receive the free beverage.
The eight-hour Slurpee salute is the centerpiece of the month-long Operation: Thank You campaign, which enlists 7-Eleven customers to show their support for U.S. troops by adding a $1 donation to the USO (United Service Organizations) when they check out at participating 7-Eleven stores. Donated funds will go toward USO care packages given to U.S. troops serving overseas. Each care package includes products like beef jerky, trail mix, toiletries and an AT&T phone card.
“November has two very important American holidays – Veterans’ Day and Thanksgiving,” said Joe DePinto, 7-Eleven CEO and West Point graduate who served as an officer in the U.S. Army. “And with this year’s Veteran’s Day falling on 11/11/11, the timing seemed perfect to say thank-you to the men and women serving our great country. For those who are here, we can say thank-you with a free Slurpee. For those serving, we hope to raise enough funds to help the USO distribute 40,000 care packages.”
“The USO strives every day to lift the spirits of troops and their families, and this campaign does just that,” said USO senior vice president and chief development officer Kelli Seely. “Not only do our brave service men and women get treated to a popular drink, but 7-Eleven is also giving customers an easy way to show their gratitude for our nation’s heroes by supporting a program like USO Operation Care Package, which provides troops with items they say they need the most. It’s a small, but yet meaningful gift for those who make such a big sacrifice for our country.”
For each $1 contribution, 7-Eleven customers will receive a USO thank-you card to post at the store. The card has a space to add the name of a friend or family member who is serving or has served in the military, and a tear-off coupon for a free glazed doughnut or taquito (depending on where the store is located) with the purchase of any size cup of coffee. Coupons can be redeemed between Nov. 21 and Dec. 31, 2011.
For troops and their families stationed at 10 U.S. military bases, 7-Eleven has planned a special treat. Slurpee-mobiles will take America’s favorite frozen carbonated drink to them during visits between Nov. 8 – 15 to the following locations:
Bolling Air Force Base in Washington, D.C.
Langley Air Force Base in Hampton, Va.
Naval Station Norfolk in Norfolk, Va.
Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, Va.
MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Fla.
Fort Hood Army Base in Killeen, Texas
Fort Carson Army Base in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Marine Corps. Base Camp Pendleton in Oceanside, Calif.
Naval Base San Diego in San Diego, Calif.
Joint Base Lewis McChord in Tacoma, Wash.
7-Eleven has been recognized as a military-friendly company, cited again this year by G.I. Jobs magazine as one of the Top 100 Military-Friendly Employers. Ranked third on the list, 7-Eleven was the only food retailer included.
In 2009, the company introduced a military veterans’ franchise program offering discounted franchise fees to honorably-discharged veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces. Qualified veterans who become new 7-Eleven franchisees receive a 10-percent discount on the franchise fee for the first store they franchise. This discount can range from $1,000 up to approximately $35,000, depending on the store. Since the program launched, 22 veterans have become 7-Eleven franchisees. Another 17 have applied to become new franchisees. These new business owners have served in the U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy and U.S. Marines.