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Mon., Aug. 31
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Straight Talk hosting demonstrations at Walmart to benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation


MASSENA - Patrons of local Walmart stores today will have the opportunity to help make a wish come true for a child with a life-threatening medical condition.

Thanks to a partnership between Straight Talk Wireless and Walmart, the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Central New York (MAWCNY) stands to gain as much as $7,000 through a donation made by Straight Talk to the foundation for each person who simply views a one-minute product demonstration.

“The more people who go in and say they’re demoing for Make-A-Wish, the more money we will make,” said MAWCNY Communications Manager Bethann Kistner.

The nationwide initiative launched last week by Straight Talk is part of a four-week promotion geared at raising money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. A minimum donation of $500,000 will be made with a donation of up to $1 million being possible.

Ms. Kistner said MAWCNY’s share of that could be up to $7,000. She explained the local chapter covers 15 counties and 25 Walmart stores, with the money raised from those stores coming back to the local chapter, which grants wishes to children in 15 counties across Northern and Central New York.

Ms. Kistner said so far this year - the foundation’s fiscal year ends on Oct. 31 - Make-A-Wish has granted the wishes of 10 children from either St. Lawrence, Jefferson or Lewis counties, with the average cost of a wish being $9,000.

Each year she said the foundation typically grants between 10 and 12 wishes for children from across Northern New York, with more than 1,200 total wished being granted since their chapter was formed in 1985.

In a statement posted on the foundation’s website TracFone Wireless President and CEO F. J. Pollak said, “With Straight Talk you can get the same phones and same networks for half the cost.”

He continued, “Straight Talk Wireless is helping our customers ‘feel richer’ in a different way by giving them an opportunity to enrich their communities and the lives of families and children in them.”

TracFone is the parent company.

Ms. Kistner added the best part about the initiative is customers do not have to sign up for the service in order for a donation to be made.

“There’s no strings attached. It’s just a demo,” she said. “Make-A-Wish-Foundation of Central New York is very grateful to Straight Talk for helping to grant new wishes.”

The promotion, which began last week will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each Saturday through Oct. 13.

Participating Walmart stores in the area include Massena, Potsdam, Ogdensburg, Watertown’s Route 3 location, Lowville and Evans Mills.

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