Coors Brewing Company has become the first US corporation to become a sponsor of a new campaign to highlight and eradicate hatred in American society.

The company will match 100% of the first $25,000 (£12,800) in individual donations through the Campaign to Erase Hate website.

Erasing hate from schools, workplaces, and communities is the goal of the campaign, launched in America in March by the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

The foundation was created by Dennis and Judy Shepard in memory of their 21-year old son Matthew, who was murdered in an anti-gay hate crime in Wyoming in October 1998.

Matthew’s murder was a watershed moment in the perceptions of LGBT people in America.

Then-President Bill Clinton tried to extend federal hate crime legislation to include gay and lesbian people in the aftermath of his death, but ultimately was defeated by Congress.

Judy Shepard, Executive Director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, launched the new ‘Campaign to Erase Hate’ by asking the crowd of more than 500 people to raise themselves to the power of ten and join with her in helping the Foundation fulfil its mission of erasing hate.

“Coors takes great pride in being a partner with an organisation with such a powerful and important message,” said Doug Sanborn, Manager of Corporate Relations.

“We wanted to help the Foundation engage more people in this important campaign as well as help provide the crucial funds it takes to fulfil such a movement.

“Coors is dedicated to its ongoing partnership with the mission of the Matthew Shepard Foundation.”

Coors is the third largest producer of beer in America and the second largest brewer in this country, where it owns the Carling brand.

The Campaign to Erase Hate was created to mark the 10th year since Matthew Shepard’s death.

The overall goal is to equip individuals with the necessary tools to discuss and address hate in society.

The Foundation is the voice for inclusive hate crimes legislation and works to empower and ensure the safety of gay, transgender and allied youth.

To join the campaign, visit www.MatthewShepard.org/CampaignToEraseHate