Cintas Soap Drive Nets More Than 100,000 Bars of Soap for Humanitarian Relief Efforts
CINCINNATI, June 19, 2008 — On June 13th a Cintas semi-truck loaded with soap, shampoo, shave kits, lotion and other hygiene essentials arrived at Matthew 25: Ministries in Blue Ash, Ohio, to a thunderous round of applause. In itself, the delivery was not a particularly noteworthy event – Matthew 25: Ministries receives hundreds of pallets of soap and other personal care items each year. The donation, however, is a testament to the tremendous difference two people can make.
Cintas employee-partners Cindy Lindgren and Brooklyn Walters were volunteering at Matthew 25: Ministries when they heard the story of a heart-wrenching need: a hospital in Nicaragua so desperate for supplies, the staff had to keep the hospital’s only bar of soap under lock and key.
"During our two-hour drive back to Indianapolis, we kept thinking about that one bar of soap," said Lindgren, an office manager at Cintas’ First Aid and Safety facility in Indianapolis.
Shortly after Lindgren and Walters returned to Indianapolis, they took action. They secured permission from Cintas General Manager Chris Straley and launched a soap drive to collect as many bars of soap as possible during the month of May.
"We were getting small donations here and there, but things really changed when one of our Cintas customers suggested calling Gilchrist & Soames right here in Indianapolis," said Walters, an office administrator for Cintas’ Document Management facility in Indianapolis. Cintas driver John Steckler agreed to pick up the donation and deliver it to Matthew 25: Ministries.
Gilchrist & Soames, a purveyor of fine toiletries, donated not only soap made for some of the world’s most luxurious hotels, but also lotion, bath crystals, shoe polish and other products. With the company’s generous donation, Cintas employee-partners were able to deliver a total of 26 pallets and more than 100,000 bars of soap to Matthew 25: Ministries.
Cintas Corporation has partnered with Matthew 25: Ministries since 1998, providing clothing, sewing machines and fabric, medical supplies and other products to under-served regions in the U.S. and developing countries around the world.
"Cintas is the premier example of what a corporation can do for a non-profit organization like ours, and we are so blessed and humbled by the generosity of Cintas over the years," said the Rev. Wendell Mettey, Founder and President of Matthew 25: Ministries.
According to Matthew 25: Ministries, two million children die every year from diarrhea caused by unsafe drinking water and poor hygiene and sanitation. According to a study conducted by Cincinnati-based Procter & Gamble and the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, household hand washing with soap reduces diarrhea illnesses by about 50 percent. Personal hygiene products such as soap save countless lives that would otherwise be lost through contamination and unsanitary conditions.
About Matthew 25: Ministries:
Matthew 25: Ministries rescues and reuses 10,000,000 pounds of distressed corporate products each year and redistributes them to people in desperate need throughout the U.S. and worldwide. In 2007, Matthew 25: Ministries rescued more than ten million pounds of products valued at $83.3 million. These products positively impacted the lives of more than 2.75 million people.
Matthew 25: Ministries holds a four-star rating from Charity Navigator and meets the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance Standards. For every $1 donated, Matthew 25 delivers $124 in humanitarian aid.
About Cintas Corporation:
Headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, Cintas Corporation provides highly specialized services to businesses of all types. Cintas designs, manufactures and implements corporate identity uniform programs, and provides entrance mats, restroom supplies, promotional products, first aid and safety products, fire protection services and document management services to approximately 800,000 businesses. Cintas is a publicly held company traded over the Nasdaq National Market under the symbol CTAS, and is a Nasdaq-100 company and component of the Standard & Poor's 500 Index. The Company has achieved 38 consecutive years of growth in sales and earnings, to date.
Figure 1: Cintas Office Manager Cindy Lindgren of Indianapolis reacts to the delivery of 26 pallets of soap and other hygiene products she collected for Matthew 25: Ministries in Blue Ash, Ohio.
Figure 2: Cintas driver John Steckler of Avon, Indiana, opens the back of the Cintas semi-truck containing over 100,000 bars of soap for humanitarian relief efforts.