OFFICE DEPOT FOUNDATION LAUNCHES
ANTI-BULLYING EDUCATIONAL INITIATIVE IN SCHOOLS NATIONWIDE
New Program Features Bullying Expert Brooks Gibbs and is Supported
by Sales of Exclusive One Direction Collection at Office Depot
Boca Raton, Fla., August 19, 2013 – Office Depot, Inc. (NYSE: ODP), a leading global provider of school supplies and services, today announced the next phase of its multi-faceted anti-bullying partnership with One Direction – a new Office Depot Foundation educational program intended to help stop bullying.
The Office Depot Foundation – the independent, nonprofit philanthropic arm of Office Depot – has engaged nationally known speaker Brooks Gibbs to present its “Be The Difference. Speak Up Against Bullying!” program in middle schools across the U.S. during the upcoming school year. A youth crisis counselor and bullying expert, Gibbs has spoken to more than 1 million students about bullying in the past decade.
Beginning in early September, Gibbs will conduct school assemblies for students as well as anti-bullying education sessions for parents, teachers and administrators in each city he visits. The campaign aims to give students the confidence and courage to report bullying as a strategy for reducing bullying. Gibbs’ “treat everyone like friends – even your enemies” philosophy enhances One Direction’s message of “Live Nice.”
“The educational program that we have created in partnership with the Office Depot Foundation trains students, parents and educators in proven strategies to stop bullying now and in the future,” said Gibbs. “We couldn’t be more proud of what we have created and look forward to inspiring hundreds of thousands of students to live kind, love everyone and move together against bullying.”
“The Office Depot Foundation is committed to helping children succeed in school and in life,” said Mary Wong, President of the Office Depot Foundation. “We are grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with One Direction, Office Depot and Brooks Gibbs to help create a safe, bully-free environment in middle schools across the United States by empowering students to speak up against bullying.”
Last month, Office Depot and One Direction launched an exclusive, limited-edition back-to-school collection with a percentage of the products’ sales being donated to the Office Depot Foundation to support anti-bullying education. The 1D + OD Together Against Bullying back-to-school campaign is helping to raise $1 million for the Office Depot Foundation’s anti-bullying education component of the multi-tiered partnership between Office Depot and One Direction.
“We are excited that the money raised from the 1D + OD Together Against Bullying product line is being used to fund the Office Depot Foundation’s anti-bullying program in schools across America,” said Louis Tomlinson of One Direction. “We believe it is important for students to live original and be nice to their peers. We truly hope this program helps eliminate bullying in schools.”
Details about the application process for schools interested in participating in the “Be The Difference. Speak Up Against Bullying!” educational program will be announced later this month on the Office Depot Foundation website, www.officedepotfoundation.org.
THE 1D+OD LIVE.LOVE.MOVE campaign, product line and educational program has been designed by SEW Branded, a New York brand image and marketing consultancy.
About Office Depot
Office Depot provides core office supplies, the latest technology, school essentials, copy & print services, cleaning & breakroom products, and furniture to consumers, teachers and businesses of all sizes through 1,614 worldwide retail stores, global e-commerce operations, a dedicated sales force, an inside sales organization, and top-rated catalogs. The Company has annual sales of approximately $10.7 billion, employs about 38,000 associates, and serves customers in 60 countries around the world.
Office Depot’s common stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol ODP. Additional press information can be found at: http://news.officedepot.com.
About One Direction
One Direction – Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson – were discovered by Simon Cowell on the U.K.’s “The X Factor” in 2010. The band quickly gained a following to become one of the competition’s all-time most popular acts, finishing in the final three and garnering a gigantic and loyal fan base along the way. In March 2012, One Direction’s debut album, “Up All Night,” made U.S. history, as it was the first time a U.K. group’s debut album entered the U.S. Billboard 200 chart at No. 1. The band has sold over 30 million records worldwide. In November 2012, One Direction released their sophomore album, “Take Me Home,” which includes the No. 1 single, “Live While We’re Young,” and are currently on a sold-out world tour. One Direction’s 3D motion picture film This is Us is in theaters nationwide on August 30 and features the new hit single “Best Song Ever.”
About the Office Depot Foundation
The Office Depot Foundation is an independent foundation − tax exempt under IRC Sec. 501(c)(3) − that serves as the independent charitable giving arm of Office Depot, Inc. In keeping with its mission, Listen Learn Care®, the Foundation supports a variety of programs that give children tools to succeed in school and in life; build the capacity of non-profit organizations through collaboration and innovation; and help communities prepare for disasters, as well as recovering and rebuilding afterwards. For more information, visit www.officedepotfoundation.org.
About Brooks Gibbs
Brooks Gibbs is a youth crisis counselor and bullying expert. He has been called upon as advisor to several school tragedies and has served as content producer for several television projects, including Teen Trouble on LIFETIME and Bully Diaries on Comcast On-Demand.
Gibbs is young, dynamic and hugely popular as a speaker in school districts across the nation. He consistently receives the highest speaker ratings at teacher conferences, mental health training events and student gatherings. He began writing and speaking on the subject of bullying in the aftermath of the Columbine shooting that took place in his hometown of Littleton, Colorado. In the decade since America’s most notorious school tragedy, Brooks has spoken to over 1 million students, hosted national radio and television shows, been featured in publications like The Washington Post and The Huffington Post and has been interviewed on CBS.