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Discovery Aids Tsunami Victims

1/04/2005 9:13 AM Eastern

Discovery Communications Inc. is doing its part to help victims of the tsunami that hit Southeast Asia Dec. 26.

The company said Tuesday that it will match all funds that its 5,000 worldwide employees contribute to certain organizations including CARE, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, as well as several regional relief funds based in India, Sri Lanka and Thailand, with no limit on the amount of the company’s total contribution.

DCI’s relief-aid campaign began with an initial $400,000 contribution, reflecting a $200,000 personal donation from chairman and founder John Hendricks and his wife, Maureen, and the company’s match.

Discovery Channel is also producing a special “Spotlight” presentation, The Next Wave: Science of Tsunamis, to air Wednesday at 10 p.m. (EST/PST), which is currently being scheduled to run outside of the United States, as well.

And DCI will begin running global public-service announcements on its 65 networks in 165 countries to provide people with information about how they can make donations to relief organizations.

Discovery Education has developed a new online feature, "Understanding Tsunamis" (www.discoveryed.com), to help parents and teachers talk with children about the tsunami.

Finally, all 120 Discovery Channel Stores in the United States will accept donations from customers, and the company will direct 100% of these funds to designated relief organizations.

“On behalf of Discovery Communications’ 5,000 employees worldwide, we express our deepest condolences and share the sadness and concern for the hundreds of thousands of people who have been affected by the tsunami disaster,” DCI CEO Judith A. McHale said in a prepared statement.

“In the wake of this tragedy, not only will our company make a significant financial contribution to assist in the recovery efforts, but we will also create special programming about the science of tsunamis so that people around the world can understand what exactly happened on that tragic day and how to avoid future devastating effects,” she added.

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