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Dutch Boy Paints and the National Basketball Association have joined forces for a broad cross-promotion this spring to raise funds for child abuse prevention.

Dutch Boy said the effort, to benefit the non-profit Healthy Families America, is its largest and most comprehensive promotion yet.

Backed by TV and print advertising and involving indirect support from McDonald's Corp., the complex effort is also the latest example of a growing movement by major marketers using causes for broad, integrated marketing promotions that maximize exposure for minimal media costs.

"We've worked out many ways to get our message out there to link its elements to diverse media without spending more for media," said Debbie Joseph, Dutch Boy marketing services manager.

Partners & Shevack, New York, handles advertising; Soltis, Hardman & Partners, Fairlawn, Ohio, executed the promotion for Cleveland-based Dutch Boy.

The promotion began earlier this month with a USA Today ad introducing the Dutch Boy/NBA Healthy Families America Team. Running through April 30, the effort includes a separate tie-in to 23 individual NBA players who agreed to participate in fund-raising.

Overall, Dutch Boy has pledged to raise at least $100,000 through the promotion for Healthy Families America, established by the National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse to offer early intervention and education for families at risk for child abuse.

Charlotte Hornets forward Alonzo Mourning and Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Mike Fratello serve as captain and coach of the Dutch Boy team. Each week during the promotion, Dutch Boy will make a donation of $1,000 to Healthy Families America in the name of the player with the best performance under its ongoing "In the Paint" promotional NBA tie-in.

In addition, Dutch Boy will donate 50 cents from every can of Kid's Room Paint sold; the in-store promotion also includes a sweepstakes. The promotion will appear on 80 million McDonald's carryout bags and 25 million tray liners.

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