ATLANTA, Nov. 24, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Aaron's, Inc. (NYSE: AAN), a leading omnichannel provider of lease-purchase solutions, and its divisions Aaron's and Progressive Leasing, surprised two single-parent families in Tallahassee this week with rooms of furniture to fill their new homes as part of Homes for the Holidays (HFTH) program sponsored by former NFL star Warrick Dunn. HFTH began in 1997 when Coach Tony Dungy challenged Dunn to contribute to the community beyond football and Warrick Dunn Charities was formed in 2002 offering several additional programs to working parents.
The 156th and 157th homes were presented by Warrick Dunn Charities' (WDC) Homes for the Holidays program, which assists single parents as they become first-time homeowners. WDC, in partnership with Aaron's and Habitat for Humanity affiliates, helps transform the house into a fully furnished home including furniture, food and all the amenities associated with being settled in a personal home. Referred to as a hand up and not a hand-out, these families have successfully completed the homeownership requirements specified by Habitat and required by WDC. Both organizations believe that basic financial literacy and understanding of personal finance provides families with the best chance for educational, social and economic success, a goal of WDC.
"Aaron's is thrilled to once again partner with Warrick Dunn and Habitat for Humanity and present beautiful new homes to these women who have worked so hard to achieve home ownership," said John Robinson, CEO of Aaron's, Inc. "I'm inspired by these single mothers, who deserve safe and comfortable homes to raise their children. We are so happy that they can begin the holiday season in such a wonderful way and enjoy their new homes with their families."
This week marks WDC's 20th Anniversary of the first recipient in the Homes for the Holiday program. To date, WDC and its sponsors have rewarded 157 single parents and over 400 children and dependents with first-time homeownership in 15 cities across the nation. The 156th WDC home was presented to India Williams, who works as a clinical support specialist at Big Bend Hospice in Tallahassee. She supports a teenage daughter and three-year-old twin boys and is a regular volunteer at Big Bend Habitat for Humanity.
Just two doors down from India, Maria Wright was awarded the 157th WDC home. Maria is a single mother of three children. Her primary job is with Pediatria Healthcare, where she provides nursing care for medically fragile children who are too sick to enroll in traditional daycare. Her daughter enrolled at Florida State University this year, becoming the first member of her family to attend college.
"As we celebrate 20 years of the Homes for the Holiday program, I look at India and Maria as representative of my own Mother. These women are hardworking and deserving of the benefits of stable housing. Thanks to our board, Aaron's, and our volunteers, these recipients walked in to their new homes, both of which are full of stylish and modern furniture, appliances and technology," said Dunn. "This couldn't happen without the generous help of good corporate citizens and I am thankful for these relationships. It all reminds me of how fortunate I've been, and how grateful I am for the memory of my Mom and for her legacy which benefits all of our families."
Aaron's has been a longtime supporter of WDC initiatives and began contributing home furnishings, appliances and electronics to the Homes for the Holidays program since 1997. Warrick Dunn Charities was founded in 2002 by former NFL star Warrick Dunn.
About Aaron's, Inc.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Aaron's, Inc. (NYSE: AAN), is a leading omnichannel provider of lease-purchase solutions. The Aaron's Business engages in the sales and lease ownership and specialty retailing of furniture, consumer electronics, home appliances and accessories through its more than 1,750 Company-operated and franchised stores in 47 states and Canada, as well as its e-commerce platform, Aarons.com. In addition, Progressive Leasing, a virtual lease-to-own company, provides lease-purchase solutions through approximately 27,000 retail locations in 46 states. Dent-A-Med, Inc., d/b/a the HELPcard®, provides a variety of second-look credit products that are originated through federally insured banks. For more information, visit investor.aarons.com, Aarons.com, ProgLeasing.com, and HELPcard.com.
About Warrick Dunn Charities
Warrick Dunn Charities provides hope and healing to communities through innovative programming inspired by our Founder's life journey. Since 1997, the Homes for the Holidays program has rewarded 157 single parents and 400 children and dependents that have achieved first-time homeownership in Atlanta, GA, Baltimore, MD, Baton Rouge, LA, Dallas, TX, Jacksonville, FL, Tallahassee and Tampa, FL. Serving single-parent families nationwide, WDC and its partners have combatted poverty, hunger and ensure families have basic necessities and comfortable surroundings to improve their quality of life. Betty's Hope, a mobile children's bereavement program provides students aged 5-18 with a safe and responsive environment for them to heal and enhance their quality of life after experiencing a loss. For more information, visit www.wdc.org.
About Big Bend Habitat for Humanity
Big Bend Habitat for Humanity provides affordable homeownership to low-income persons. The Habit for Humanity model allows for groups and individuals to sponsor homes through financial contributions and pledges of volunteer labor. Individuals who acquire a home through Habitat for Humanity must in turn provide volunteer labor for other homes built by the organization. For more information about Big Bend Habitat for Humanity, visit BigBendHabitat.org.
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SOURCE Aaron's, Inc.
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