Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Cardmembers Vote 'Children's Safe Drinking Water' Project Idea the Winner of American Express' Members Project

GoodBiz113 ad partner American Express just announced that, after receiving the most Cardmember votes, "Children's Safe Drinking Water" is the winning project idea for The Members Project. American Express is awarding the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, the organization selected to fulfill the idea, $2 million dollars, which will be used to provide millions of children in the developing world with safe drinking water.

The Members Project [] launched on May 15 and brought thousands of American Express(R) Cardmembers together to submit, discuss, rate and, ultimately, vote on the one project idea they wanted American Express to bring to life. American Express contributed $1 toward the winning idea for every Cardmember that registered, with a minimum commitment of $1 million and up to $5 million in funding.

Throughout The Members Project initiative, 186,508 Cardmembers registered -- with more than 7,000 project ideas submitted and 162,087 votes cast. Additionally, there were over 1.5 million unique visitors to the website.

Therefore, American Express decided to double its minimum commitment of $1 million and award the winning project idea $2 million to help make a larger impact.

In addition, American Express announced a Recognition Award of $100,000 each to the organizations paired with the remaining four project ideas, and has designated the award money be used in the spirit of the Cardmember's project idea.

"Through The Members Project, we brought together our community of Cardmembers in a new, interactive way that tapped into ideas and causes they are most passionate about," said Jud Linville, President and CEO, Consumer Services at American Express. "Our Cardmembers truly rallied around project ideas, encouraging Cardmembers across the country to get involved. Now, they can feel great that a difference will be made, thanks to their votes and efforts."

The winning idea, "Children's Safe Drinking Water" paired with UNICEF, was submitted by American Express(R) Cardmember Gregory Allgood of Cincinnati, Ohio.

Other Four Finalists
* "Teachers ask. You choose. Students learn. -- This program aims to create a website where public school teachers can request specific educational projects for their classrooms, and individuals can log on to choose which projects to fund, in turn, providing educational tools for students from low-income families nationwide." Fulfilling organization:

* "Plant a Million Trees: Global Reforestation -- From forest fires to rainforest destruction, to natural water disasters to overdevelopment, trees are disappearing in vast numbers all over the globe. This plan suggests planting millions of trees where they are needed most." Fulfilling organization: American Forests.

* "Wind and Solar for Residential -- This project plans to create a small power-generating unit that is small and powerful enough to be placed into every residential home. The ultimate goal of the project is to create a community of homes to help generate power for the power companies to use." Fulfilling organization: American Solar Energy Society.

* "Restore our U.S. National Parks -- The United States' National Parks and Historic Sites are in disrepair, and funding is needed to repair and refurbish. This project aims to provide funding to the landmarks that define our nation." Fulfilling organization: National Park Foundation.

The Members Project, which is a part of American Express' new brand campaign, "Are You a Cardmember?[SM]," highlights the value of being part of the American Express Cardmember community.

American Express, Membership and Giving Back
American Express Company [] is a leading global payments, network and travel company founded in 1850. American Express has been synonymous with “Membership” since it introduced “Member Since” dates on its Cards in 1964, and has continued to develop a sense of membership through the special benefits and exceptional services offered to Cardmembers.

The Members Project -- which is a part of American Express’s new brand campaign, “Are You a Cardmember?[SM]” -- highlights the value of being part of the American Express Cardmember community. Giving back is a core value of the Company, and being a “good citizen” is a hallmark of the brand.

Over the years, American Express has supported causes that are important to Cardmembers, merchant partners and the general public -- from reopening the Statue of Liberty after 9/11, to fighting hunger and preserving historic sites around the world. Through these programs, including The Members Project, American Express is providing an outlet for consumers’ desire to “do good.”

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