RONA INC.
TSX : RON

RONA INC.

October 21, 2008 17:00 ET

RONA to Provide Building Materials for a Post-Games Legacy of Affordable Housing in B.C.

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Oct. 21, 2008) - RONA inc. (TSX:RON), the largest Canadian retailer and distributor of hardware, renovation and gardening products, is proud to announce it will be contributing building materials for the delivery of post-Olympic Games affordable housing units in six communities across British Columbia. This announcement was made today at the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) headquarters, in partnership with B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell, B.C. Minister responsible for Housing Rich Coleman, Mayor of the City of Surrey Dianne Watts as well as officials from the International Olympic Committee and VANOC.

An agreement between the Province of British Columbia and VANOC proposes to reconfigure modular housing from the Olympic and Paralympic Village in Whistler and relocate it as permanent affordable housing to six communities across the province: Chetwynd, Chilliwack, Enderby, Saanich, Sechelt and Surrey. Up to 156 units of permanent affordable housing will be made available to people most in need after the close of the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. At that time, RONA will also be supporting affordable housing beneficiaries by outfitting their new homes with furniture, decor and other accessories needed to make them feel at home.

"Community projects such as the donation of affordable housing units and the RONA Vancouver 2010 Fabrication Shop training program are perfectly aligned with RONA's commitment to sustainable development," said Robert Dutton, RONA President and CEO.

"In each city, town or village where we do business, we look to generate a positive, lasting impact in the community. The Olympic Legacy Affordable Housing project allows B.C. communities and their residents to benefit from the Games' legacy. RONA, along with its 27,000 employees across the country, is extremely proud to be contributing to building this success story."

"The construction of these modular homes would not be possible without the generous support from RONA, one of our National Partners, for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games," said John Furlong, VANOC Chief Executive Officer. "We are very proud to be collaborating with an organization that has such a strong track record in supporting social sustainability in Canada - leaving B.C. with a strong legacy from the 2010 Winter Games."

RONA will be providing construction items such as lumber, plywood, carpet, tile, and trusses to the modular home project at the Olympic and Paralympic Village Whistler which will be used for the Olympic Legacy Affordable Housing.

THE RONA VANCOUVER 2010 FABRICATION SHOP

As a National Partner of the 2010 Winter Games, RONA is truly helping build Canada's Games, in more ways than one. Working in collaboration, RONA and VANOC partnered with community organizations to set up the RONA Vancouver 2010 Fabrication Shop, where small wood products required at the Olympic and Paralympic venues are built. The Fab Shop is also host to the delivery of a community-based training program providing carpentry skills training and supported job experience to individuals who have yet to successfully enter the workforce. The program is taught by a Red Seal-certified carpentry instructor and three supervising carpenters. It is certified by the Industry Training Authority, the agency overseeing B.C.'s industry training and apprenticeship system. A total of four groups of trainees will go through the Fab Shop 30-week carpentry training program until 2010.

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT PART OF RONA'S HISTORY

At RONA, sustainable development means growth for our communities and our employees, as well as respect for the environment. Two of our most significant initiatives, among the many already in place, are the "Growing with Our Athletes" program, through which RONA supports 100 Canadian athletes, and the RONA Foundation, established in 1998 to provide help for young people 12 to 30 years old by supporting local organizations and projects that fight the school dropout problem and illiteracy or offer training to help young people learn a trade or occupation. Where the environment is concerned, adopting responsible practices in this field has always been a priority at RONA. At a time when most citizens had yet to see the environment as a major concern, RONA took part in establishing a Quebec-wide used-paint recovery and recycling program - an economical and environmentally friendly alternative to landfills or incineration. Today, the paint recycling program is extended to Ontario as well. Recently, the Company released its first RONA ECO brand products, which are much more environmentally friendly than equivalent conventional items, thanks to a product development approach that's based on a life-cycle analysis and a rigorous assessment process.

ABOUT RONA

RONA is the largest Canadian distributor and retailer of hardware, home renovation and gardening products. RONA operates a network of close to 700 corporate, franchise and affiliate stores of various sizes and formats. With over 27,000 employees working under its family of banners in every region of Canada and more than 15 million square feet of retail space, the RONA store network generates over $6.3 billion in annual retail sales. For more, please visit rona.ca.

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