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Imperial Oil, Cumberland Farms, ExxonMobil Focus on Community

CALGARY, Alberta, Canton, Mass., and HOUSTON -- Two energy companies and a convenience retailer -- Imperial Oil, ExxonMobil and Cumberland Farms, respectively -- recently gave a helping hand to the communities they serve.

Calgary, Alberta-based Imperial Oil partnered with its employees and retirees to contribute nearly $3.2 million to the 2008 United Way-Centraide campaign across Canada, making it one of Imperial's most successful annual campaign's, the company reported.

"The generosity and enthusiasm of Imperial employees and retirees was apparent in all parts of the campaign," Bruce March, Imperial chairman, president and CEO, said in a statement. "This outstanding support reinforces Imperial's longtime belief that United Way services play a crucial role improving the lives of Canadians in communities across the country."

Employees volunteered their time in the Day of Caring activities, and also took part in fundraising events including a chili cook-off, bake sales, canoe races, a Tiger Walk and an employee game show event, according to the company.

In addition, more than $160,000 was raised Sept. 13, 2008, when more than 500 Esso-branded retail gasoline sites across the country engaged in Esso United Way Day, a day when the company donated one cent from every liter of gasoline sold, and one dollar from each car wash sold, to the nonprofit organization.

In other charitable news, Cumberland Farms officials honored a Laconia, N.H., police officer's actions of compassion by donating to the police relief fund and a statewide food bank, the Laconia Citizen reported.

In January 2008, Officer Jeff Wholley arrested Benjamin M. Berry, 32, who allegedly shoplifted four sandwiches, valued at $9.16, from the Cumberland Farms store in Laconia. Later, upon learning Berry took the sandwiches because he was hungry and homeless, Wholley returned to the store and paid for the sandwiches, and gave them to Berry.

To acknowledge Wholley's actions, Cumberland Farms President Ari Haseotes was expected to present a $1,000 donation to the Laconia Police Relief Fund, as well as $2,500 to the New Hampshire Food Bank. In addition, Cumberland Farms will provide lunch for the Salvation Army patrons.

In other community service news, Exxon Mobil Corp. and the National Community Action Foundation (NCAF) partnered to enhance training programs for new workers who are required to meet the needs of rapidly growing weatherization programs, including the federal government's Weatherization Assistance Program. This program, implemented by 900 local community agencies represented by NCAF, enables low-income Americans to reduce their energy bills by making their homes more energy efficient.

In addition, ExxonMobil will donate $5 million to NCAF to support projects that will expand the scale and scope of existing training programs, allowing workers to be well-prepared for sustainable careers in the growing fields of energy efficiency and weatherization, the company stated.

"This new partnership is based on our common belief that energy efficiency and economic development go hand in hand," Rex W. Tillerson, chairman and chief executive officer of ExxonMobil, said in a statement. "By working together, we can advance our shared goals of protecting the environment, promoting energy efficiency and expanding career opportunities for American workers."
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