Caesars Entertainment is privileged to be part of many diverse communities around the world. As such, we are deeply committed to helping make these communities healthy and vibrant places to live and work.
Employee-based community involvement (HERO) teams at each of our resorts volunteer their time, expertise, creativity and passion to initiatives that improve people's lives. From January 2010 through the first half of 2011, HERO volunteers contributed more than 173,000 hours to communities and the environment through individual and HERO-sponsored volunteer efforts.
Caesars encourages its HERO teams by providing organizational and financial resources. For example, with corporate support, 42 employee teams from 17 resorts and regions joined the American Cancer Society's 2011 local Relay for Life events. The Caesars Foundation paid registration fees for all 42 participating employee teams, and matched their fundraising efforts up to $500 per team. Caesars corporate office upped the ante by pledging Total Return credits to the top fundraiser at each resort.
In addition to having a great time, our volunteers raised almost $100,000 through activities such as bake sales and dunking booths. In combination with matching contributions from the Caesars Foundation, the event resulted in a direct contribution to the American Cancer Society of almost $130,000.
Cycling for the Fallen Officers Memorial Fund
In 2011, Edward Maas, a 40-year old corrections officer from Las Vegas, was preparing to bicycle across America in 33 days to raise money for the Fallen Officers Memorial Fund, which provides support for local families of fallen officers. Caesars Entertainment provided Maas with a $10,000 contribution and cycling jerseys in support of his cross-country bike trip—the single largest donation to Maas' ride. Twenty-two Caesars resorts combined resources to donate 12 room and entertainment packages that were used to raise additional funds via social media.
When employees and members of our communities expressed the need, Caesars developed a national-level program to help eligible employees and local residents become naturalized U.S. citizens. Three hundred employees took advantage of the program when it was implemented by our Las Vegas properties, receiving support from the College of Southern Nevada with the naturalization process. Caesars Entertainment provided $350 scholarships to all participating employees, which paid for half of their citizenship application fees.
Caesars also partnered with Ya Es Hora, a national civic campaign that works to naturalize legal permanent residents. We were a founding partner for a Las Vegas coalition of 16 Latino organizations and the Human Rights Campaign in 2010. This coalition has since helped more than 1,000 Las Vegas residents complete naturalization forms at free workshops. These workshops were staffed with volunteer attorneys, and organized and assisted by more than 100 Caesars volunteers. Caesars also is a lead organization for Ya Es Hora workshops in San Diego through its Harrah's Rincon HERO volunteers and a lead sponsor for the first citizenship workshops in Reno.