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For The Kids

One retail store adopts a sense of responsibility.
May 1, 2000
URL: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/26664

Children's Orchard Inc., the Ann Arbor, Michigan-based franchisor of upscale children's resale stores, announced its plans to sponsor the newly created Family Builder's Adoption Network (FBAN). Unveiled during National Adoption Awareness Month, this is the first national adoption network for special needs children.

Walter F. Hamilton, president of Children's Orchard, wanted to join forces with an organization that had similar values about children and families. "I was uncomfortable in a sense that our company was a good and respected business, but just a business. I felt we could accomplish more if we had a soul, a mission," Hamilton says.

When Spaulding for Children, the Detroit-based National Resource Center for Special Needs Adoption, expressed a critical need for funding, Children's Orchard came aboard. Besides funding, Children's Orchard will provide promotional support with posters, brochures and collection boxes in every participating store. However, Hamilton's main goal for 2000 is to raise between $70,000 and $100,000 for the cause.

Children's Orchard had 1999 sales of close to $20 million and plans to open its 100th store this year. It has also launched a new Web site, www.wepaycash.com, marking the first time a business is buying used children's clothing over the Internet.