Taco Bell donation campaign will benefit local military families

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) --{}Nearly 500 Taco Bell and PizzaHut restaurants will participate in the fourth annual "Freedom Bells"fundraiser, in support of the Armed Forces Families Foundation.

One hundredpercent of donations collected from Dec. 5{}until Dec. 18{}will be used for projects to benefit military families in Alabama, Florida,Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, South Carolina, and Virginia.{}

Donations canbe made at participating Taco Bell and Pizza Hut restaurants by purchasing apersonalized paper bell or by giving extra change from meal purchases.{}Donors who give $1 or more also will receive a coupon while supplies last, forone free taco at their next visit.{} {}{}

"Our TacoBell employees and AFFF volunteers are very passionate and excited abouthelping and supporting Military Families in our local communities. It is our honor and privilege to be able to give back to all thosewho sacrifice for our daily freedom," said Brian Goldstein, Division Leader forTaco Bell Corporate, which is participating in the fundraiser for the thirdconsecutive year.

Last year's"Freedom Bells" campaign raised more than $339,000, with donations from 491restaurants across markets in Alabama, Florida, North Carolina, Tennessee,Virginia, South Carolina and Georgia. Donations have paid for projects such asrenovations to the Internet Caf and the Polytrauma Family Room at James A.Haley VA Hospital and two new children's playgrounds at NAS Pensacola.{}

This year'sexpanded fundraiser will include 478 Taco Bell restaurants, includingcorporate-owned and franchised locations. Fifty eight Pizza Hut restaurantsalso will participate, for a total of 536 locations.

Participatingrestaurants are in the following metropolitan areas:

  • Alabama- Mobile
  • Florida- Daytona Beach, Fort Myers, Gainesville, Jacksonville,Melbourne, Miami, Naples, Orlando, Pensacola, St. Petersburg, Sarasota, Tallahassee,Tampa and West Palm Beach
  • Georgia-Augusta, Savannah
  • North Carolina-Charlotte, Greensboro, Asheville
  • South Carolina-Charleston, Greenville, Spartanburg
  • Tennessee-Nashville
  • Virginia-Norfolk

All proceedswill go to the Armed Forces Families Foundation (AFFF), which has completedeight major projects, including:

  • Remodeled Family Wellness Center, National Training Center, Ft. Irwin,CA
  • Remodeled Family Center & Computer Lab, USA Mayport Naval Station,Jacksonville, FL
  • Remodeled Family Waiting Areas, Walter Reed Army Medical Center,Washington, DC
  • Donation of Two Mobile Computer Labs to Freedom Park Elementary, Ft.Gordon, GA
  • Built Multi-Age Children's Playground, NAS Pensacola, Pensacola, FL
  • Remodeled USO Lounge, Charlotte/Douglas International Airport USO,Charlotte, NC
  • Remodeled Internet Caf and Polytrauma Family Room, James A. Haley VAHospital, Tampa, FL
  • Remodeled Surgical Intensive Care Unit Waiting Areas, Malcom RandallVA Hospital, Gainesville, FL

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