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Our National Community Partners

Boys & Girls Clubs of America logo

Boys & Girls Clubs of America

For more than a decade, Ross and Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) have worked together to help children achieve academic success, build confidence, and lead healthy lives. Our Foundation and Company—together with our generous Customers and Associates—have contributed nearly $35 million to BGCA throughout the life of our partnership.

Ross believes in BGCA’s mission to enable all young people—especially those facing socioeconomic challenges—to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.

We support BGCA nationally, but also have “adopted” 39 local BGCA regional or citywide organizations, which include more than 100 local Clubhouses nationwide. In the adopted Clubs, the Ross Stores Foundation offers an annual grant and scholarship program for high-achieving college-bound high school seniors.

Ross is also the national sponsor of BGCA’s Power Hour, an after-school homework help program. During Power Hour, Club members receive support in completing their homework to improve their academic performance and develop a sense of personal responsibility. We are proud that we have helped to build Power Hour into what BGCA calls their most utilized program and one that, in a typical year, serves nearly 750,000 kids and teens with academic success support in more than 3,925 Clubs.

“We continue to celebrate the outcomes accomplished through this incredible partnership between Ross and Boys & Girls Clubs of America. Thanks to your expertise and belief in our mission, we have built an academic program more useful and strategically effective than we could have ever predicted… Our partnership has fueled local Power Hour implementation and prioritized the ever shifting but always great potential for youth to succeed in tomorrow’s world.”

— James L. Clark, President and CEO, Boys & Girls Clubs of America

First Book logo with URL:

First Book

Millions of children from low-income areas often do not have the tools they need to learn. Books and resources impact everything from psychological well-being to academic performance, but many kids in need do not have that advantage.

To address this need, dd’s DISCOUNTS partners with First Book, a nonprofit organization that transforms the lives of children in need by making brand-new, high-quality books and resources affordable and available to the educators and kids who need them most.

In partnership with First Book, dd’s DISCOUNTS’ Customers and Associates help turn local kids into readers, learners, and leaders by equipping them with new, high-quality books. Since 2009, together we have distributed more than two million new books to kids in need across the country and have raised more than $5 million for literacy programs in local communities.

In-Store Fundraising and Customer Donations

Ross is grateful for the hard work of our Associates and the generosity of our Customers, which have helped fuel tremendous support for our national community partners over the years.

Ross “Help Local Kids Learn” Fundraiser for BGCA

Every year, Associates at all of our Ross Dress for Less Stores across the United States lead a fundraiser to benefit BGCA. During the fundraiser and throughout the year, we work to establish strong connections between our Stores and the local Clubs.

The 2021 “Help Local Kids Learn” fundraiser was held in August. Despite ongoing challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and thanks to the incredible support of our Customers and hard work of our Associates, the campaign raised nearly $4 million for BGCA’s Power Hour and local Clubs.

Ross’ support of Power Hour helped the program grow exponentially in response to the new learning environment created by the pandemic. Our donations have also funded the development of a new Power Hour curriculum for elementary school students, which BGCA reports has already had a noticeable effect building confidence in school and inspiring academic performance.

dd’s DISCOUNTS “Youth Literacy Fundraiser” for First Book

dd’s DISCOUNTS runs an annual Back-to-School fundraiser with First Book. When checking out at the register, our Customers are invited to make a donation that goes directly to local educational programs. The local programs then choose the right books for their students, based on age, language, and need. Every Customer donation at a dd’s DISCOUNTS Store means First Book can deliver more great books to children.

After having to pivot in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, dd’s DISCOUNTS returned to holding its in-Store fundraiser in 2021. Through this initiative, nearly $1 million was raised to provide books for schools and local literacy programs in communities close to dd’s Stores. According to a First Book survey, the effort reached more than 70,000 kids across the country.

“For more than twenty years school libraries have not received funds. Much of my book collection was from 1998. With this grant from dd’s, I was able to add new nonfiction that gives my students current up-to-date information and that adds to their intellectual curiosity.”

— Elementary School Librarian

Coin Shortage Donation Collection

In 2020 and 2021, as economic activity slowed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, our country experienced a coin shortage due to a drop in cash circulation. Many businesses, including Ross Dress for Less and dd’s DISCOUNTS Stores, were unable to order coins as they normally would.

When faced with this challenge, our Stores stepped up to execute a creative solution that also benefited our national community partners. If our cashiers could not provide exact change or have the Customer use an alternative form of payment, Customers were invited to round up their purchase to the nearest dollar and donate the difference to BGCA or First Book. This effort continued into the early part of fiscal year 2021.

Throughout the effort, our Customers raised a sizable and unexpected gift of more than $370,000 combined for BGCA and First Book.

Grand Openings

As our Company grows, so do our partnerships with BGCA and First Book. Whenever we open a new Ross Dress for Less or dd’s DISCOUNTS Store, we make a donation to a local Boys & Girls Club or First Book literacy partner. In 2021, we donated to 65 local partners near our newest Stores.