FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — With a little over a week to go in this year’s campaign, the Fort St. John Liquor Distribution Branch store is already past the three quarter pole and heading down the stretch to another sell out year in the annual Share-a-Bear charity program.
The teddy bear program began last month and by closing time on Wednesday night it had slipped past 75 per cent of the sales target of 2,400, with total sales posted at 1,836.
The Liquor Distribution Branch program has become a central part of the holiday season and it won the Retail Council of Canada’s, Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative Award in 2007.
For more than a decade now, there’s nowhere in the province, where it has been more successful than in Fort St. John, with the local store at the top of the province-wide sales list for twelve consecutive years.
For those not familiar with the program, for every panda bear purchased by customers, there’s a charity twin supplied by the LDB for distribution in the area where it was sold.
In addition, many customers also donate back the purchased twin bears raising considerably the LDB distribution totals.
The purchase price for a set of twin bears is now $12.50 and the program will continue until the Christmas Eve 6 p.m.
Since the program was launched in 1989 more than 600,000 bears have been distributed to charities, shelters and hospitals, and this year province-wide more than 25,000 are ready to be shared.
Participating customers can also take part in free draws for giant pandas — and they’re approximately 56 centimetres tall — and each LDB branch will have two of them to give away in contest draws on Christmas Eve.