NEW YORK - More than $2.5 million -- a total that has doubled just today -- has been raised by the Verizon Foundation and Verizon employees as part of a special disaster relief campaign.
The Verizon Foundation is providing a 2-to-1 match for every dollar donated by employees to the American Red Cross to aid relief efforts in New Orleans and sections of Alabama, Florida and Mississippi that were devastated by Hurricane Katrina.
"This is an incredible response from a generous and caring employee base," said Patrick Gaston, president of the Verizon Foundation. "This is an unprecedented response rate to our matching funds program, and it shows no sign of letting up."
Verizon is also making it possible for its customers to donate to the Red Cross through clicking on the link to Red Cross on the Verizon.com Web site.
Also, Verizon Wireless customers can donate to relief efforts via text-messaging from their wireless devices. To participate, customers can send a message to the address 2HELP or 24357 using the key word "help." They will receive a reply message asking them to confirm a $5 donation to the Red Cross.
The Verizon Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications. In 2004, the foundation awarded more than 26,000 grants totaling over $70 million to charitable and nonprofit agencies that focus on improving literacy, computer and technology skills, and identifying domestic violence solutions. 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 528,000 hours in their communities and provided $37.6 million in combined contributions to charitable and nonprofit organizations. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizon.com/foundation.
With more than $71 billion in annual revenues, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon has a diverse work force of more than 214,000 in four business units: Domestic Telecom provides customers based in 28 states with wireline and other telecommunications services, including broadband. Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 47.4 million voice and data customers across the United States. Information Services operates directory publishing businesses and provides electronic commerce services. International includes wireline and wireless operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.