Verizon Foundation Offers Grant Opportunities to Great Lakes Region Nonprofit Groups

INDIANAPOLIS - Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, wants to help people improve their job skills and is seeking grant proposals for workforce development projects in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin.

Nonprofit organizations and educational institutions, especially those in communities where Verizon provides local telephone service, are invited to apply for competitive grants totaling $339,000.

"Economic vitality depends upon workforce development programs that enable workers to qualify for jobs driven by ever-changing technology," said John Dudley, president - Verizon Great Lakes Region. "Verizon has invested billions of dollars in the region's telecommunications infrastructure and cares deeply about the communities it serves."

Verizon is seeking proposals that support job retraining, school-to-work programs, welfare-to-work programs, and the use of technology in vocational or disability programs.

Proposals must be submitted no later than June 20, 2003. Individual grants will range from $5,000 to $25,000. Winners will be notified by the end of September.

Proposals must be submitted through Verizon Foundation's Web site, www.verizon.com/foundation. Applicants should click on the site's Great Lakes Region Workforce Development RFP link.

To qualify for funding, applicants must be public or private 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations with a valid Internal Revenue Service tax ID. Schools must have a current school and district registration from the National Center for Education Statistics to qualify.

Verizon Foundation is committed to helping people and communities make progress every day. The foundation supports a variety of programs that focus on improving basic and computer literacy, bridging the digital divide, enriching communities through technology, and creating a skilled work force. The foundation promotes partnerships in technology with organizations serving the needs of diverse communities, people with disabilities, and the economically and socially disadvantaged. The foundation also supports Verizon Volunteers, an incentive program that encourages Verizon employees to volunteer in their communities and provides matching gifts to nonprofit organizations. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizon.com/foundation.

Verizon Communications

A Fortune 10 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 136.6 million access line equivalents and 33.3 million Verizon Wireless customers. Verizon is the third-largest long-distance carrier for U.S. consumers, with 13.2 million long-distance lines, and the company is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. With approximately $67 billion in annual revenues and 227,000 employees, Verizon's global presence extends to the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.