JCPenney Afterschool Fund Distributes More Than $9 Million in Grants to Afterschool Programs

Grants Includes Donations Contributed by JCPenney and JCPenney Customers, Associates and Suppliers

PLANO, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--

This school year, more than 20,000 children across the nation are participating in safe, life-enriching afterschool programs thanks to the JCPenney Afterschool Fund and its contribution of more than $9 million through the organization's access grant program.

"Donations contributed to the JCPenney Afterschool Fund by JCPenney with the help of its customers, Associates and suppliers, have helped to directly improve the lives of tens of thousands of children," said Mike Theilmann, chairman of the JCPenney Afterschool Fund. "Thanks to these grants, at-risk children across the nation now have access to afterschool programs that will keep them safe and foster their academic, physical and social development, helping them to reach their full potential."

Through four national afterschool program providers and funders -- Boys & Girls Clubs of America, YMCA of the USA, National 4-H and United Way of America -- the JCPenney Afterschool Fund assisted children who were currently not in afterschool programs or on the verge of leaving afterschool programs due to a lack of funds. These national organizations identified the at-risk children and provided matching funds for full or partial financial assistance. The grants reached youth from kindergarten through the 12th grade in all 50 states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico. Additionally, JCPenney contributed over $1 million in gift cards in support of the JCPenney Afterschool Fund grants. Each child who received a grant also received a $50 JCPenney gift card to help with the purchase of clothing and supplies for the school year.

Studies show that 14.3 million children in the United States are unsupervised after school between the hours of 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. each day. Additionally, studies show that youth are at greater risk of involvement in crime, drug abuse and other destructive behaviors during these hours. To address this issue, JCPenney created the JCPenney Afterschool Fund in 2001, and together they have contributed more than $70 million to support the afterschool cause nationwide, giving tens of thousands of children the opportunity to participate in essential afterschool programs. The JCPenney Afterschool Fund continues working toward the day when all children in America will have access to life-changing afterschool programs that help them reach their full potential.

About The JCPenney Afterschool Fund

The JCPenney Afterschool Fund is a charitable organization committed to advancing the afterschool movement in JCPenney communities by increasing access for children in need, inspiring innovation in the field, and elevating awareness of the value of afterschool programs. Currently, more than 14 million youth in America are unsupervised every day between the hours of 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. Through partnerships with the YMCA of the USA, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, National 4-H and United Way of America, the JCPenney Afterschool Fund helps prepare children to reach their full potential by providing them with essential afterschool opportunities. For more information visit www.jcpenneyafterschool.org.

About JCPenney

JCPenney is one of America's leading retailers, operating 1,093 department stores throughout the United States and Puerto Rico, as well as one of the largest apparel and home furnishing sites on the Internet, jcp.com, and the nation's largest general merchandise catalog business. Through these integrated channels, JCPenney offers a wide array of national, private and exclusive brands which reflect the Company's commitment to providing customers with style and quality at a smart price. Traded as "JCP" on the New York Stock Exchange, the Company posted revenue of $19.9 billion in 2007 and is executing its strategic plan to be the growth leader in the retail industry. Key to this strategy is JCPenney's "Every Day Matters" brand positioning, intended to generate deeper, more emotionally driven relationships with customers by fully engaging the Company's 155,000 Associates to offer encouragement, provide ideas and inspire customers every time they shop with JCPenney. For more information visit www.jcpenney.net.

Source: J. C. Penney Company, Inc.