Verizon Awards $50,000 in Workforce Development Grants To Three Wisconsin Nonprofits

SUN PRAIRIE, Wis. - Three Wisconsin nonprofit organizations have been awarded grants totaling $50,000 from Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, to help train workers for new and better jobs.

"Economic vitality in Wisconsin depends on a skilled workforce," said Dan Matson, vice-president, regulatory and government affairs for Verizon Wisconsin. "These grants will help workers receive the necessary training to remain competitive in today's challenging labor market.

"Cultivating a skilled workforce helps attract jobs and businesses," said Matson. "Verizon is committed to assisting the communities we serve in these efforts."

In April, nonprofit and educational organizations in the Great Lakes Region states of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin were invited to compete for Verizon grants by submitting proposals outlining workforce development programs. Three Wisconsin proposals were selected for funding:

  • Southwest Wisconsin Workforce Development Board (Dodgeville) -- $20,000 to develop Web site competency testing and training for prospective employees in Grant, Green, Iowa, Lafayette, Richland and Rock counties.

  • Wausau Area Hmong Mutual Association (Wausau) -- $10,000 for the Wausau Fresh Start program, which allows at-risk Asian-American youths to work toward obtaining their general equivalency diploma while building low-income housing.

  • Wilmot Union High School (Wilmot) -- $20,000 to provide special needs students with employability skills while placing them in area businesses for a monitored work-based learning experience.

Verizon Foundation last year awarded 25 grants totaling more than $345,000 to charitable and nonprofit agencies in Wisconsin that focus on improving basic and computer literacy, enriching communities through technology, and creating a skilled work force. Nationally, the foundation awarded 22,000 grants totaling more than $70 million. The foundation uses its resources in the United States and abroad to develop partnerships in technology and connect them with organizations serving the needs of diverse communities, people with disabilities, victims of domestic violence and the economically and socially disadvantaged.

The foundation also supports Verizon Volunteers, an incentive program that last year encouraged Verizon employees to volunteer more than 500,000 hours in their communities and provided $27.8 million in combined contributions to charitable and nonprofit organizations. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizon.com/foundation.

A Fortune 10 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $67 billion in revenues and 221,000 employees. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 137.6 million access line equivalents and 34.6 million Verizon Wireless customers. Verizon is the third largest long-distance carrier for U.S. consumers, with 14.6 million long-distance lines. The company is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. Verizon's international presence includes wireline and wireless communications operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.