Phoenix Children’s Hospital Announces Partnership with PetSmart®
(September 10, 2012) Phoenix Children’s Hospital announced today that Phoenix-based PetSmart (NASDAQ: PETM) will underwrite the animal assisted therapy program, recently renamed Paws Can Heal. The substantial $425,000 gift from PetSmart was pledged over five years and will be utilized to cover the costs of equipment, supplies, research costs, and the training of pet therapy teams.
An interactive celebration ceremony, with distinguished guests and furry friends, will take place on the playground at Phoenix Children’s Hospital, 1919 E. Thomas Rd, Phoenix on Thursday, September 20th at 10 a.m.
“Phoenix Children’s Hospital is an organization that PetSmart has long supported and is a point of pride for our hometown,” said David Lenhardt, President and Chief Operating Officer for PetSmart. “We are thrilled to launch this exciting partnership in an effort to bring the unique power of pets to children during their time of healing.”
In 2011, over 800 patients at Phoenix Children’s were visited by volunteer pets, which include 45 dogs and one cat. Pet therapy animals significantly help young patients with rehabilitation and provide the unconditional love that only an animal can give. Research shows that patient interaction with animals provides positive physical and emotional benefits, including lowering blood pressure, decreasing heart rate and anxiety, and reducing stress.
“We are truly grateful for PetSmart’s partnership. This gift allows us to continue to bring the kids and families throughout Arizona the world-class family-centered care that they deserve,” said Steve Schnall, Vice President, Phoenix Children’s Hospital Foundation. “Our Hospital relies on the vision of individuals and companies like PetSmart to meet the growing pediatric healthcare demand in our state.”
The partnership will also include PetSmart’s Title sponsorship of Dine with Your Dog, the Hospital’s main annual fundraising event for Paws Can Heal, which PetSmart sponsored for the first time in 2012. PetSmart associates will also have the opportunity to become engaged with Phoenix Children’s through volunteerism.
MEDIA NOTE: The celebration ceremony is a private event and not open to the public. Media are invited to attend. Contact media liaison, Allison Otu, at 602-933-0824 to gain access to the Hospital.
About Phoenix Children’s Hospital
Phoenix Children’s Hospital, ranked in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Children’s Hospitals, is Arizona’s only licensed children’s hospital, providing world-class inpatient, outpatient, trauma, emergency and urgent care to children and families in Arizona and throughout the Southwest. As one of the largest children’s Hospitals in the country with 465 licensed beds, Phoenix Children’s provides care across nearly 50 pediatric specialties. The Hospital is poised for continued growth in quality patient care, research and medical education. For more information about the hospital, visit www.phoenixchildrens.com.
PetSmart, Inc.(NASDAQ: PETM) is the largest specialty pet retailer of services and solutions for the lifetime needs of pets. The company employs approximately 50,000 associates and operates more than 1,249 pet stores in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, over 194 in-store PetSmart® PetsHotel® dog and cat boarding facilities and is a leading online provider of pet supplies and pet care information (http://www.petsmart.com). PetSmart provides a broad range of competitively priced pet food and pet products; and offers dog training, pet grooming, pet boarding, PetSmart Doggie Day CampSM day care services and pet adoption services. Since 1994, PetSmart Charities, Inc., an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit animal welfare organization and the largest funder of animal welfare efforts in North America, has provided more than $165 million in grants and programs benefiting animal welfare organizations. Through its in-store pet adoption partnership with PetSmart Charities®, PetSmart has helped save the lives of more than 5 million pets.
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