<span> <span style="">NEW ORLEANS</span> – Sept. 29, 2008 – Harrah's Foundation has awarded a $257,000 grant to fund the Edible Schoolyard New Orleans, which is modeled after the world-famous Edible Schoolyard founded by chef Alice Waters in Berkeley, Calif. Harrah's Foundation is awarding the grant through the Brees Dream Foundation's Operation Kids initiative. Harrah's Foundation Trustee and Central Division President for Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. John Payne will present the check to the New Orleans Saints' Drew Brees and Brittany Brees on Tuesday, Sept. 30. The presentation takes place at 5:30 p.m. at the Samuel J. Green Charter School at 2319 Valence Street.
"My wife Brittany and I established the Brees Dream Foundation to provide care, education and opportunities for children facing adversity," said Brees. "We are proud to partner with Harrah's Foundation to help make many children's dreams of a better life a reality." The Brees Dream Foundation's Operation Kids initiative has contributed over $1.6 million to the New Orleans community since its inception in June 2007. For more information on its ongoing goals and fundraising efforts, please visit www.drewbrees.com.
The Harrah's Foundation grant will be used to complete the construction of an organic teaching garden at Green Charter School and to develop the Edible Schoolyard program at Arthur Ashe Charter School. The Edible Schoolyard program aims to revive and promote the rich gardening and culinary heritages of New Orleans while providing hands-on growing and cooking experience for public school students. Students in grades K through 8 participate in gardening and cooking lessons that reinforce classroom coursework in core subjects, including science, social studies, language and mathematics.
"The project is much more than a stand-alone gardening or cooking program," said Dr. Tony Recasner, President of FirstLine Schools, Inc., the organization that oversees Green and Ashe charter schools. "It is an educational initiative that uses food and growing traditions of New Orleans to nurture, educate and empower our youth while building community. The Harrah's Foundation gift will help our students and garden to continue to thrive and grow."
"Harrah's is committed to the well-being of all the communities in which we operate," said Payne. "It is a privilege to have the opportunity to support the efforts of the Brees Foundation, Operation Kids and the Edible Schoolyard to improve the lives of children in New Orleans."
The Green School is in the process of transforming a large area of school property into an Edible Teaching Garden, complete with an outdoor classroom, outdoor kitchen, potting shed and garden areas to organically grow seasonal produce and vegetables. Design work is underway to develop an Edible Kitchen where produce will be prepared and shared as part of the students' coursework.
About the Harrah's Foundation
The Harrah's Foundation is a private, 501(c)(3) foundation established to provide financial support to qualified organizations in communities where Harrah's employees live and work. Established in 2002, the Harrah's Foundation is funded by Harrah's Entertainment properties and supports social reinvestment programs by funding eligible 501(c)(3) organizations dedicated to seniors, education and civic programs. Since its formation, the Harrah's Foundation has committed nearly $63 million to nonprofit organizations throughout the United States. More information is available at http://www.harrahscommunityrelations.com.
Last year, "BusinessWeek" magazine named Harrah's the "most generous cash giver as a percent of pre-tax profits" among the 500 companies that comprise the Standard & Poor's stock index.