Verizon Foundation Offers $50,000 in Grants to South Carolina Nonprofits and Educational Institutions

COLUMBIA, S.C. - The Verizon Foundation is seeking grant proposals from nonprofit organizations and educational institutions in South Carolina for innovative literacy projects that address the areas of family, adult, early childhood or K-12 literacy, including programs that develop English as a second language or basic computer literacy skills.

Verizon is particularly interested in proposals that deliver literacy training via e-Learning and use technology to enhance literacy training, such as computer and Web-based training programs.

Eligible nonprofit organizations and educational institutions can submit proposals online and compete for grants totaling up to $50,000 to fund programs that most effectively match the Verizon Foundation's literacy focus. The individual grants will range in size from $1,500 to $10,000.

"Higher literacy rates mean stronger communities, economic growth and a skilled workforce," said Alan Ciamporcero, president of Verizon's Southeast Region. "Verizon is committed to supporting organizations in their efforts to develop and increase awareness of this fundamental need in today's technology-driven workplace."

To qualify for funding, applicants must be a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization with a valid Internal Revenue Service tax ID, or an accredited educational institution that has a current district registration number and is affiliated with the National Center for Education Statistics.

Proposals must be submitted through the Verizon Foundation's Web site, www.verizon.com/foundation, no later than August 31. Qualified applicants should click on the "Apply Online" link, then on the link marked "Click here to begin!" and then add the invitation code 32N8XK6QPE.

More information about this request for proposals can be found at the Verizon Foundation's Web site at http://foundation.verizon.com/rfp/2006_rfp_sc.shtml. Verizon expects to announce decisions on these grants no later than October 27.

Verizon delivers technology that touches life. The Verizon Foundation uses that technology and the foundation's financial resources to improve literacy and K-12 education; to support victims of domestic violence; and improve the delivery of health care. In 2005, the foundation awarded more than $74 million in grants to charitable and nonprofit agencies in the United States and abroad. The foundation also supports Verizon Volunteers, which is one of the largest employee volunteer programs in the United States and responsible for 2 million hours of community service since 2000 and $35.6 million in combined contributions to nonprofits in 2005 alone.

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

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), a Dow 30 company, 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 53 million customers nationwide. Verizon Business operates one of the most expansive wholly-owned global IP networks. Verizon Telecom is deploying the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network to deliver the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services to customers. Based in New York, Verizon has a diverse workforce of more than 250,000 and generates annual consolidated operating revenues of approximately $90 billion. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.