Lillian Vernon Helps Swell Literacy Fund

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Cataloger Lillian Vernon, Rye, NY, has teamed with the Literacy Volunteers of America, Syracuse, NY, to raise money for the nonprofit by donating 5 percent of each purchase made of two products featured in its fall catalog - a book bag and eyeglass case.

"We try to have the products that we are going to be featuring related to the cause in some way if we can," said David Hochberg, vice president of public affairs at Lillian Vernon. "In this case, the book bag and the eyeglass case were a good match."

Twelve million copies of the catalog were dropped earlier this month. The products are displayed on page 2 and are accompanied by a letter from CEO Lillian Vernon. The letter contains an anecdote as to why it chose LVA this year.

Lillian Vernon has been partnering with nonprofits for the past few years. "Each campaign has been very successful, and it has proven to be a very effective way for us to make money for nonprofits," Hochberg said. "It also gives them the chance to find new donors."

For LVA, the opportunity to get its message out to a large group of people who might not otherwise know about it is the real draw of the program, said Anu R. Ailawadhi, director of cause-related marketing at LVA.

Lillian Vernon will not release the names of the people who purchase the products.

"That is a privacy issue," Hochberg said. "It would be presumptuous on our part to think that just because one of our customers made this purchase, they would want to be put on another list."

A toll-free number is provided in the catalog for consumers who want to find out more about LVA and its cause.

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