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Farmers Insurance Teams With Blessings in a Backpack

Thursday, May 19, 2011 General News J E 4
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$25,000 DONATION COINCIDES WITH ALL-STAR RACE NO. 25 THROWBACK PAINT SCHEME

CONCORD, N.C., May 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Farmers Insurance is proud to donate $25,000 to Blessings in a Backpack in conjunction with its No. 25 Farmers Insurance "Throwback" paint scheme that Mark Martin will drive in Saturday night's NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race. The donation spans three cities and will feed 374 students whose families qualify for the federal free and reduced meal program.

(Logo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20080605/LATH062)

"This unique program with Farmers Insurance has lasting value for the community," said Stan Curtis, Founder of Blessings in a Backpack. "More than 62 percent of children in the United States public school system are on the free or reduced meal program. We've found that our program leads to better test scores, improved reading skills, positive behavior, improved health and increased attendance for the kids who benefit from it."

The donation will aid three schools in communities with ties to Hendrick Motorsports: Community Charter School in Charlotte, N.C., a short drive from the team's facility; South Hill Elementary near car owner Rick Hendrick's hometown of Palmer Springs, Va.; and Sulphur Rock Elementary in Batesville, Ark., Martin's hometown.

"The Blessings in a Backpack organization fills a crucial void for children who might otherwise go hungry," said Chuck Browning, Vice President of Community Branding for Farmers Insurance. "This is a great way to enter NASCAR and our partnership with Hendrick Motorsports -- by supporting communities that are in need and important to all of us."

Blessings in a Backpack is a non-profit organization that currently feeds more than 37,600 students in 216 schools in 32 states and three countries -- Canada, Colombia and Haiti. Students benefiting from the program receive a backpack full of food every Friday for three years.

"We're proud to be associated with organizations like Farmers that give back to the community," said Hendrick, who attended South Hill Elementary. "The schools that will benefit from this program have a lot of meaning to us, but it's going to mean even more to those kids and their families. What a special way to kick off our partnership with Farmers."

On Thursday, members of the Hendrick Motorsports team will join representatives from Farmers Insurance at Hendrick Motorsports to fill 62 backpacks that will be donated to Community Charter School in Charlotte.

Farmers Insurance announced in April that it had joined Hendrick Motorsports as a five-race primary sponsor of the Chevrolets driven by Mark Martin in the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Farmers Insurance will launch its program with a special No. 25 Farmers Insurance Throwback Chevrolet in Saturday's NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race. The paint scheme will resemble the red No. 25 car fielded by Hendrick Motorsports for the first time in 1986 -- 25 years ago.  

ABOUT FARMERS INSURANCE:

Farmers Insurance Group of Companies is the country's third largest insurer of both personal lines passenger automobile and homeowners insurance, and also provides a wide range of other insurance and financial services products. Farmers Insurance is proud to serve more than 10 million households with more than 20 million individual policies across all 50 states through the efforts of over 50,000 exclusive and independent agents and nearly 24,000 employees.

Farmers is a trade name and may refer to Farmers Group Inc. or the Farmers Exchanges, as the case may be. Farmers Group Inc., a management and holding company, along with its subsidiaries, is wholly owned by the Zurich Financial Services Group. The Farmers Exchanges are three reciprocal insurers (Farmers Insurance Exchange, Fire Insurance Exchange and Truck Insurance Exchange), including their subsidiaries and affiliates, owned by their policyholders, and managed by Farmers Group Inc. and its subsidiaries. For more information about Farmers, visit its website at www.farmers.com or at www.Facebook.com/FarmersInsurance.

ABOUT "BLESSINGS IN A BACKPACK":

Blessings in a Backpack is a results-oriented program. This unique program is designed to feed elementary school children whose families qualify for the federal Free and Reduced Price Meal program, and have little to no food on the weekends. Better test scores, improved reading skills, positive behavior, improved health and increased attendance have all been attributed to the success of this program.

$80 feeds a child in the program for an entire school year. Following a donation, a school is chosen and a local grocer partners  with the program to provide food for meals in the backpacks. Every Friday, students receive their backpacks with staples that require little to no preparation. They return with their backpacks on Monday ready to learn.

Blessings in a Backpack is a 501 C (3) non-profit organization currently feeding over 37,600 children in 216 schools in 32 U.S. states and three countries - Canada, Columbia and Haiti. The program is a hybrid of private sector funding and public partnership carried out in public schools. We are feeding the future of America, one school at a time.

ABOUT HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS:

Since 1984, Hendrick Motorsports has earned 196 race victories and a record 10 car owner championships in NASCAR's premier division, the Sprint Cup Series. The organization fields four full-time Chevrolet teams on the Sprint Cup circuit with drivers Mark Martin, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Headquartered in Concord, N.C., Hendrick Motorsports employs more than 500 people. For more information, please visit www.HendrickMotorsports.com, www.twitter.com/TeamHendrick and www.facebook.com/HendrickMotorsports.

MEDIA INFORMATION:Michelle Levy, Farmers Insurance512-791-7445michelle dot levy at farmersinsurance dot com

Kendra Jacobs, Hendrick Motorsports704-455-3400kjacobs at hmsracing dot com

MEDIA ALERT:

Members of the news media are invited to join Farmers Insurance and Hendrick Motorsports as they stuff the backpacks for Community Charter School in Charlotte. The event will be held at 9 a.m. local time in the 5/24 shop on the Hendrick Motorsports campus. Please contact Kendra Jacobs for additional information.

SOURCE Farmers Insurance

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