Verizon Foundation Offers $150,000 in Grants to Pennsylvania Organizations Serving Blind, Visually Impaired

PHILADELPHIA - The Verizon Foundation invites nonprofit organizations in Pennsylvania serving blind and visually impaired people to compete for $150,000 in grants ranging from $10,000 to $25,000 that target work force, e-literacy or community development and include a technology component.

"Technology has dramatically changed the way we live, learn and work," said James V. O'Rourke, president and CEO of Verizon Pennsylvania. "These grants are designed to help organizations be innovative and more effectively help blind and visually impaired individuals function in today's technology driven world."

Verizon is seeking proposals that support programs assisting people with special needs in acquiring computer skills, or that support welfare-to-work and school-to-work training programs and Web-based literacy programs.

Proposals must be submitted through the Verizon Foundation's Web site, www.verizon.com/foundation. Applicants should click on the Pennsylvania RFP link and type invitation code 614IZPF6FE.

To qualify for funding, applicants must be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a valid Internal Revenue Service tax ID.

All proposals must be submitted by Aug. 30. Verizon will announce the grant winners by Nov. 1.

The Verizon Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications. In 2003, the foundation awarded more than 21,000 grants totaling about $70 million to charitable and nonprofit agencies that focus on improving basic and computer literacy, enriching communities through technology, and creating a skilled work force. 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 595,000 hours in their communities and provided $34.6 million in combined contributions to charitable and nonprofit organizations. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizon.com/foundation.

A Dow 30 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $68 billion in annual revenues. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States. Verizon 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.