In recognition of National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day (January 9), we thought it only fitting to share some of the amazing stories and rich history from our signature community outreach program, Operation Chill®. This longstanding success story began in Philadelphia in 1995 as a way to help reduce crime and enhance relations between police and youth by awarding Slurpee® coupons to kids who were “caught” performing good deeds in their neighborhoods.
By 2006, 7-Eleven was working with more than 500 local law enforcement agencies and had distributed more than 1 million coupons as part of Operation Chill. Fast forward to 2015, we gave law enforcement agencies more than 14 million coupons to give to kids since the program’s launch two decades earlier.
"With a simple Slurpee coupon, the Operation Chill program lets local officers connect with kids and recognize their good behavior, which is essential to creating long-term positive relationships," said 7-Eleven President and CEO Joe DePinto. "The program's success over 25 years is a powerful testament to the importance of making these community connections – both for 7-Eleven and public safety officers.”
In a year where all our lives were impacted in both big and small ways, 7-Eleven’s partners in law enforcement continued to celebrate kids and kindness with Operation Chill free Slurpee coupons. (Photo credit: Sansford Herald)
Operation Chill In Action
Each coupon can be redeemed for one Slurpee* drink at participating 7-Eleven stores. Although the reasons for being rewarded vary – wearing a helmet while riding a bike, picking up litter or holding the door open – the end result is the same for every youngster: a free Slurpee drink and encouragement for being a good kid.
"As police officers, the relationships we share with the community are extremely important," said Washington D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham. "Community engagement campaigns and events provide us with the opportunity to further strengthen our connection with the citizens we serve. The Operation Chill program is a great way for us to bond with the youth in our city over a Slurpee drink."
In 2020, we kicked off the 25th Anniversary of Operation Chill amidst a global pandemic, a time when 7-Eleven stores and their role in neighborhoods across the U.S. (and around the globe) has never been more vital. That role includes the ongoing relationship with local law enforcement agencies who help to keep stores and customers safe and, of course, support of programs like Operation Chill. In fact, this year 7-Eleven is providing more than 1.5 million Slurpee coupons to 1,100+ law enforcement agencies in 32 states and D.C. so they can continue to reward children for observing safety rules, participating in positive activities, and performing good deeds or acts of kindness!
In 2017, Operation Chill reached 1,000 local law enforcement agencies and donated “Slurpee” the horse to the Baltimore Police Department. (Photo credit: WBAL-TV)