Florida Nonprofits Received Nearly $1.2 Million in Verizon Foundation Grants During 2007

TAMPA, Fla. - More than 100 nonprofit groups in Florida received nearly $1.2 million from the Verizon Foundation in 2007, enabling the recipient organizations to improve basic literacy skills, create new and diverse approaches to technology-based learning, and help domestic violence victims rebuild their lives.  Additionally, more than 500 assorted nonprofit organizations received more than $640,000 through the Verizon Volunteer program, bringing total foundation support for Florida to more than $1.8 million.

The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications and one of the largest corporate foundations in the world, awarded a total of $67.4 million in grants last year. 

"Verizon's philanthropy is directed to address critical social needs," said Alan Ciamporcero, Verizon's president for the Southeast region.  "Our foundation is making strategic investments to improve the quality of life in our communities - where our customers and employees live and work.

"Projects that advance the fundamental skill of literacy, apply technology to augment organizational capabilities, and protect the vulnerable tie directly into the Verizon Foundation's mission of making a difference," Ciamporcero said.

In 2007, Verizon Foundation grants included $25,000 for the Computer Mentors Group in St. Petersburg to expand successful computer-literacy programs; $14,300 for Girls Inc. in Sarasota in support of a state-of-the-art television studio for its after-school program; $10,000 for the Women's Resource Center in Bradenton for its Achieving Independence program; $50,000 for the Family Justice Center of Hillsborough County for its one-stop center to address domestic violence prevention; $15,000 to the Dayspring Academy in Port Richey to enhance classroom learning through Internet programs; and $20,000 to the Polk Education Foundation for two successful literacy programs. 

An additional 528 organizations received $648,120 through the foundation's Verizon Volunteers and matching gifts program, which rewards employees and retirees with matching gifts and grants to nonprofits and educational institutions that employees donate to and support.  Last year, Verizon employees supported numerous community organizations, including the Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Tampa Bay, Manatee County Girls Clubs, St. Pete Pride and the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, among many others.

The Verizon Foundation supports the advancement of literacy and K-12 education through its signature program, Thinkfinity.org, and fosters awareness and prevention of domestic violence.  In 2007, the foundation awarded more than $67.4 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in the United States and abroad. The foundation also matched the charitable donations of Verizon employees and retirees, resulting in $25.1 million in combined contributions. Through Verizon Volunteers, one of the nation's largest employee volunteer programs, Verizon employees and retirees have volunteered more than 3 million hours of community service since Verizon's inception in 2000.

For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizon.com/foundation.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving nearly 66 million customers nationwide.  Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of nearly 235,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of $93.5 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.