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Hendrick Motorsports drivers campaign Pepsi Refresh Project ideas

PURCHASE, N.Y. (June 18, 2010) – Starting today, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. are asking fans to join them in making a difference in America’s communities through the Pepsi Refresh Project. Now through June 23, NASCAR fans are encouraged to visit www.NASCAR.com/PepsiRefresh to vote for the idea they believe should receive a grant from the Pepsi Refresh Project.

Each of the three Hendrick Motorsports drivers has outlined an idea for a project about which they are passionate.

•Gordon: establishing a program to support the treatment, care and protection of abused children.
•Johnson: providing financial relief to pediatric bone marrow transplant patients. 
•Earnhardt: building a computer lab for elementary students.

The driver’s idea with the most votes by 6 p.m. ET on Wednesday, June 23 will receive a $100,000 grant from the Pepsi Refresh Project to fulfill his idea.

Gordon’s initiative would support abused children through treatment, care, and protection at the Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) at Jeff Gordon Children’s Hospital in North Carolina.  The grant would fund a new Child Life Program that aids physically and sexually abused youth by supporting them through age-specific therapeutic play and rapport-building. This child-sensitive approach emphasizes early intervention, coordinated investigations and allied responses to this growing community problem.

“One in five boys and one in three girls are sexually or physically abused in the United States, which is a shocking and ugly statistic,” Gordon said. “With the Pepsi Refresh Project, we’re hoping to help the long-term physical and emotional health of these innocent children.”

Johnson’s project focuses on providing financial relief to pediatric transplant patients by assisting with uninsured expenses after transplant through the Be The Match Foundation’s Transplant Grants for Kids program. On average, marrow transplant families experience a $1,472 shortfall between their current monthly income and monthly expenses due to increased medical bills and often the loss of a parent’s income.

“With the Pepsi Refresh Project, it is easy to make a difference, all you need is an idea,” Johnson said. “While a marrow transplant can be a life-saving treatment, it takes a significant financial toll on a family. This project gives us an avenue to help families with their uninsured expenses.”

Earnhardt is hoping to secure the grant to support technology needs at Shepherd Elementary School in Mooresville, N.C., a school that desperately needs better equipment to help enrich the lives of its many students. Funds will be used to build a new computer lab, purchase 20 new computers, and a SMART board.

“Our future lies in the hands of our children but they cannot acquire the skills they need to compete in a digital world when they don’t have the essential tools,” Earnhardt said. “A Pepsi Refresh grant is a quick and easy way to make a positive impact on America’s communities.”
The Pepsi Refresh Project is a groundbreaking effort to foster innovation in social good that will award more than $20 million this year to fund great ideas that improve America’s communities.

Throughout 2010, Pepsi will fund ideas that will move the world forward in six categories: Health, Arts & Culture, Food & Shelter, The Planet, Neighborhoods and Education. The Pepsi Refresh Project will feature significant social engagement around people and the power of ideas. Pepsi Refresh Project launched on Jan. 13. People are encouraged to submit their ideas and to cast a vote for their favorite ideas at www.refresheverything.com.

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