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Chicago Automobile Trade Association and Thomas Auto Group Collectively Donate $3,000 to Joliet Salvation Army

Chicagoland's new-car dealer association, the Chicago Automobile Trade Association (CATA), recently matched Thomas Auto Group's donation of $1,500 to the Joliet Salvation Army for a collective donation of $3,000.

"As a well-established community dealership - we just celebrated Thomas Auto Group's 25th anniversary - we feel as though it's our obligation to help neighbors in need," said Denise Thomas, community relations manager for Thomas Auto Group. "We've partnered with the Joliet-based Salvation Army since 2010 because it's aligned with our mission of helping people within our community, including providing nourishing food, clothing and shelter to hungry and homeless families."

Not only does Thomas Auto Group support the Salvation Army, but dealership employees are also actively involved. Employees across various departments at Thomas Auto Group - including sales, service or finance - donate a portion of their paycheck directly to the organization. Furthermore, they volunteer their time at Salvation Army's after-school tutoring programs or music classes.

This holiday season, the dealership also plans to ramp up efforts by putting up Angel Trees in its showrooms. Hung on the branches of the trees will be individual cards with wish lists from parents who need assistance with providing holiday presents to their children. Dealership customers can take a card off of the tree, purchase a gift for that child and drop it back off at the dealership before Christmas. The Salvation Army then wraps each present that is donated to local children.
"We're so thankful to have this incredible support from the Chicago Automobile Trade Association and Thomas Auto Group," said Dan Faundez, pastor/corps officer at the Salvation Army in Joliet. "Contributions such as this help us to continue to serve the people of Joliet."

"Thomas Auto Group is a perfect example of the vital role that dealerships play within their communities," said CATA Chairman Ray Scarpelli Jr. "The CATA is proud of dealer members like the Thomas' and all that the dealership group does to help people who need it the most."

The CATA created the Chicagoland Dealers Care program in 2008 to build upon the charitable efforts of CATA's dealer members. The CATA has been a longtime supporter of local non-profit organizations. Since its inception in 2008, the Chicagoland Dealers Care program has donated nearly $100,000 to local charitable organizations supported by new-car dealers. Additionally, since 1992, the association has raised nearly $48 million for significant Chicago-area charities during the annual First Look for Charity black-tie event, held the evening before the Chicago Auto Show opens to the public.

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