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The Pepsi Refresh Project Awards $1.3 Million to Support the Public's Favorite Ideas to Refresh the World


PURCHASE, N.Y., March 22 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The first Pepsi Refresh Grant recipients – who developed the 32 refreshing ideas voted most likely to move our communities forward – have been awarded $1.3 million from the Pepsi Refresh Project, a ground-breaking initiative designed to fund good ideas, big and small, that help refresh our world.

"The Pepsi Refresh Project was developed with the belief that great ideas can come from anyone, anywhere, anytime," said Jill Beraud, CMO and president of joint ventures, PepsiCo Beverages Americas.  "The first group of winners proves it's true.  Each of them is a testament to how someone from any walk of life can produce powerful, creative and fun ideas that can make a difference."

From improving the energy efficiency of school buses to promoting financial literacy among high school students, the top 32 vote-getters in six categories (Health, Arts & Culture, Food & Shelter, The Planet, Neighborhoods and Education) caught the public's attention by making a compelling case for why they deserved a Pepsi Refresh Grant.  Refresh Grant recipients include:

  • The American Legion of Indianapolis, IN, intends to use a $250,000 Refresh Grant to provide comfort items for U.S. military troops recovering from wounds (Neighborhoods);
  • The Economic Empowerment Initiative of Atlanta, GA, will receive a $50,000 grant to provide financial literacy seminars for high school and college students (Education);
  • The Frank Broulliet Elementary School PTA will use $50,000 to complete a community playground in Puyallup, WA (Neighborhoods);
  • All-Ages Music, a network of music organizations based in Seattle, WA, will receive $50,000 to increase access to all-ages music in underserved areas (Arts & Culture);
  • The Hugs Project of Edmond, OK, will use a $50,000 to send care packages to troops overseas (Food & Shelter);
  • The Belleville Farmer's Market plans to use a $25,000 Refresh Grant to grow fresh produce to help fight childhood obesity in southern Illinois schools (Health);
  • 14-year old Jonny Cohen of Highland Park, IL, will receive $25,000 for GreenShields, a group he formed with his sister to make school buses more energy efficient (The Planet);
  • Glenmont Elementary School of Delmar, NY, will receive a $25,000 Refresh Grant to build its community through swing dance (Arts & Culture);
  • The Sparkle Effect of Bettendorf, IA, will use a $25,000 Refresh Grant to help high school kids across the country form cheerleading squads made up of special needs students (Neighborhoods); and
  • Because We Are Sisters of Richmond, VA, will receive $5,000 to support seven families in need as they prepare for the arrival of a baby (Food & Shelter).


In January, the Pepsi Refresh Project invited individuals and organizations to submit beneficial, achievable, constructive and "shovel-ready" ideas that would make a positive impact on communities. From February 1 through February 28, Americans voted for their favorite ideas at  

"It's an honor to collaborate with Pepsi and their partners to conceive and execute such an impactful program," said Ben Goldhirsh, CEO and co-founder of GOOD, a lead partner in the Pepsi Refresh Project. "It's very exciting to feel the Pepsi Refresh Project as a new and significant pulse in this shift that is upon us — where individuals, businesses, and non-profits are working together to push toward our potential."

In total, the Pepsi Refresh Project awarded two $250,000, ten $50,000, ten $25,000 and ten $5,000 grants. Other Pepsi Refresh Grant recipients include:


  • Teach for America, New York, NY (Education)



  • The Foundry for Art Design + Culture, Cohoes, NY (Arts & Culture)
  • Active Minds, Inc., Laurel, MD (Health)
  • Darren Riskedal, Leland, IL (Neighborhoods)
  • Atlas Corps, Washington, DC (Education)
  •, Washington, DC (Neighborhoods)
  • World Leadership Corps, New York, NY (Education)



  • APO Mu Alpha Alumni, Washington, DC (Neighborhoods)
  • STRIVE-New Haven, Inc., New Haven, CT (Education)
  •, Washington, DC (Neighborhoods)
  • New York Needs You, Stamford, CT (Education)
  • Social Studies Department, Springfield Middle School, Toledo, OH (Education)
  • Patrick Nelson, Mankato, MN (Health)



  • Military Connections Corporation, Pittsburgh, PA (Food & Shelter)
  • Quad City Animal Welfare Center, East Moline, IL (Neighborhoods)
  • Nancy Nelson, Cherokee, IA (The Planet)
  • The Detroit Area Diaper Bank, Canton, MI (Health)
  • Blake Hammond, 6th grade science teacher, Merrill Middle School, Des Moines, IA (Education)
  • Homespun: Modern Handmade Goods, Indianapolis, IN (Arts & Culture)
  • Sharif Morad, Bike & Build, Charlottesville, VA (Food & Shelter)
  • Crow Elementary School, Arlington, TX  (Education)
  • Easter Seals New Hampshire, Manchester, NH (Food & Shelter)


New Round of Voting Begins April 1

In 2010, the Pepsi Refresh Project will give away more than $20 million to refresh the world, one idea at a time.  Each month, Pepsi will award up to $1.3 million in grants to the ideas with the most votes.  Pepsi will accept up to 1,000 new ideas every month and the public decides who wins. Vote for your favorite ideas now at

To support the project, Pepsi is partnering with three organizations dedicated to making a positive difference in the world: GOOD, a leading platform for thought and action revolving around pushing the world forward; Global Giving, an online marketplace that connects people who have community and world-changing ideas with people who can support them; and Do Something, the largest non-profit teen charity.

The Pepsi Refresh Project can be found at, on Facebook at or on Twitter, @Pepsi or #pepsirefresh.

Pepsi Refresh Project

In an effort to support those who generate innovative, optimistic ideas, the Pepsi Refresh Project ( will award more than $20 million in 2010 to move communities forward.  Individuals can apply for grants to benefit a variety of projects and site visitors can vote for the best ideas for funding.  The Pepsi Refresh Project is an evolution of the Refresh Everything initiative Pepsi launched in 2009, which showed the brand as an optimistic catalyst for idea creation, leading to an ever-refreshing world.   Pepsi will fund projects that make a difference in six categories: Health, Arts & Culture, Food & Shelter, The Planet, Neighborhoods and Education.

About Pepsi

Pepsi is a product of PepsiCo Beverages Americas (PBA).  In addition to the Pepsi trademark, the PBA portfolio includes the Mountain Dew, Sierra Mist and Mug trademarks in the carbonated soft drink category. PBA is a division of PepsiCo, which offers the world's largest portfolio of billion-dollar food and beverage brands, including 19 different product lines that each generates more than US$1 billion in annual retail sales. Our main businesses – Frito-Lay, Quaker, Pepsi-Cola, Tropicana and Gatorade - also make hundreds of other nourishing, tasty foods and drinks that bring joy to our consumers in More than 200 countries. With annualized revenues of nearly US$60 billion, PepsiCo's people are united by our unique commitment to sustainable growth, called Performance with Purpose. By dedicating ourselves to offering a broad array of choices for healthy, convenient and fun nourishment, reducing our environmental impact, and fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace culture, PepsiCo balances strong financial returns with giving back to our communities worldwide. In recognition of its continued sustainability efforts, PepsiCo was named for the third time to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI World) and for the fourth time to the Dow Jones Sustainability North America Index (DJSI North America) in 2009. For more information, please visit

SOURCE Pepsi Cola Company

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