April 23, 1997
Bell Atlantic and NYNEX Earmark $50 Million Toward 'Safe
Haven' Goal of Presidents' Summit
Target After-School Programs
ALEXANDRIA, Va., -- At a meeting this morning with Gen. Colin Powell (Ret.),
general chairman of the Presidents' Summit for America's Future, Bell Atlantic (NYSE:
BEL), and NYNEX (NYSE: NYN), committed to redeploy a total of more than $50 million
through the year 2000 for multi- faceted programs aimed at keeping children safe
after school. The community- based programs will include projects and resources to
give children safe, stimulating and nurturing environments during after-school hours
when they are most vulnerable.
"I'm delighted that Bell Atlantic and NYNEX have each stepped up to the
plate to make this commitment on behalf of young people," said Gen. Powell.
"This is exactly the kind of corporate leadership that will enable all of us
to work together to make a real difference for our children."
Providing a safe haven for young people after school is one of the fundamental
elements of childhood development that the Presidents' Summit has targeted in a massive
drive to secure commitments of volunteer time, money and other resources in support
of America's youth.
"This program grows out of an idea we have been studying for the past
18 months. We want to make sure that good things happen to our children when they
aren't in school and when they're not at home," said Raymond W. Smith, chairman
and CEO of Bell Atlantic. "This is one of the most pressing community and social
needs identified by our customers, social services professionals and child development
"We see it as a reinforcement of the companies' ongoing dedication to
employee volunteerism, education and to helping people with the power of technology,"
said Ivan Seidenberg, chairman and CEO of NYNEX.
"We'll make sure that both our corporate giving and the new telecommunications
technologies we offer help volunteers and communities find new ways to solve local
problems," Seidenberg said. "With this program, we'll honor the adage,
'doing well by doing good.'"
Both chairmen agreed that the program has the potential to change millions
of young lives in the northeast where the companies are principal providers of communications
The program elements have been designed and the resources identified from
the companies' existing contributions budgets and the endowments of their charitable
foundations. Specific details of the program will be announced in the coming months.
Bell Atlantic and NYNEX currently invest a total of more than $40 million
a year in philanthropic programs in the regions they serve. The programs supported
range from technology centers and performing arts training, to after-school activities
that involve skills development, leadership training, and personal growth and enrichment.
Many programs address the needs of young people for a safe haven during periods when
there are no adults at home.
Employees from both companies also contribute tens of thousands of hours each
year in volunteer activities. Some employees serve as mentors in self- esteem, leadership
and achievement while others tackle the development and improvement of facilities
that house youth programs. Youth activities remain a key focus of the companies and
NOTE TO EDITORS: A separate news release
issued today by Bell Atlantic and NYNEX describes the companies' $1.6 million dollars
in communications support for the summit in Philadelphia. For more information about
the companies' involvement in the summit, please visit the summit web site HREF="http://www.americaspromise.org">www.americaspromise.org.