ABBOTT PARK, Ill., Feb. 23 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- In 2008, Abbott's (NYSE: ABT) employee giving in the United States set new company records both in terms of number of participating employees and total dollar contributions, despite difficult economic times. Nearly three out of every four Abbott employees (74 percent) participated in the company's employee giving programs, up from 65 percent in 2007. Abbott employees contributed more than $12.6 million to non-profit groups in 2008, surpassing last year's total of $12.3 million. This figure includes pledges raised through the company's annual employee giving campaign, donations by employees throughout the year, and matching gifts from the Abbott Fund, the company's philanthropic foundation.
Abbott's employee participation is twice the rate typically seen with employee giving campaigns, which generally have 30-40 percent employee participation, according to JK Group, an organization that helps administer corporate philanthropic programs for Abbott and many other companies.
"Abbott employees continue to make tremendous financial contributions despite the current economic climate, which really underscores our culture of citizenship and service as a company," said Miles D. White, chairman and chief executive officer, Abbott. "These results demonstrate the ongoing commitment of Abbott employees to support our company's mission of improving people's lives."
Employee giving is part of Abbott's broader philanthropic investment to build healthier communities. In 2008, Abbott and the Abbott Fund provided more than $460 million in grants and product donations to improve the lives of millions of people around the world.
Abbott employees pledged donations to more than 4,400 different civic organizations, non-governmental organizations and other non-profit groups. A significant part of this support, including matching grants from the Abbott Fund, goes to long-standing community organizations such as the American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association, Arthritis Foundation, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and United Way.
In addition to financial donations, Abbott employees also give back by volunteering in their local communities -- investing their time and expertise to help make a difference in people's lives. One example is the work done by Abbott employees to modernize and double the capacity of the HealthReach free health clinic near the company's headquarters in north suburban Chicago.
"Many people in our community rely on HealthReach for medical care. To help them meet the needs of a growing number of patients, Abbott provided significant funding support and a team of Abbott employee volunteers provided expertise and hands-on assistance to help in completely renovating and expanding the clinic," said Manny Jimenez, an engineer at Abbott. "Donating money, time and expertise to worthwhile organizations like HealthReach is so rewarding -- you can help your neighbors and strengthen your own community."
About Abbott and the Abbott Fund
The Abbott Fund is a philanthropic foundation established by Abbott in 1951. The Abbott Fund's mission is to create healthier global communities by investing in creative ideas that promote science, expand access to health care and strengthen communities worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.abbottfund.org.
Abbott is a global, broad-based health care company devoted to the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of pharmaceuticals and medical products, including nutritionals, devices and diagnostics. The company employs approximately 69,000 people and markets its products in more than 130 countries.
Abbott's news releases and other information are available on the company's Web site at http://www.abbott.com.
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved