Nonprofit groups in New York and Connecticut that focused on education programs, domestic violence prevention and using technology to deliver or enhance health care received more than $13.2 million in 2011 from the Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon.
In 2011, the foundation awarded more than $66 million to nonprofit organizations throughout the United States.
"Verizon is proud to support key nonprofit organizations throughout our states that are helping to make a positive impact on society, especially in our local communities," said Jim Gerace, vice president of Verizon's New York region. "We continue our support in 2012, and look forward to using the innovative power of Verizon's network and technology to further enhance these and other vital programs."
In addition to the grants, the Verizon Foundation also matches donations made by Verizon employees. The Verizon Foundation also supports employee volunteerism by awarding a $750 grant to a nonprofit organization when an employee volunteers 50 hours or more to the organization during the year. Last year, Verizon employees volunteered more than 101,000 hours to nonprofit groups throughout the two states.
One grant totaling $100,000 was made to the United Way of New York State for its Hurricane Irene Recovery Fund, which was established at the request of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to address the long-term recovery needs, primarily in the mid-Hudson region, related to Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.
"Verizon's very generous contribution represents the highest standard of philanthropy for New York's business community, and we are very proud to have them as our partners," said Susan Hager, president of United Way of New York State. "Verizon's contribution has helped families purchase clothing, bedding, furnaces and other and household items that were lost in the floods; provide security deposits and help with other temporary housing costs; support housing rehabilitation and transportation to now far-away grocery stores; and address other essential needs."
Other local programs and organizations supported by the Verizon Foundation in 2011 include:
- CUNY Scholars -- $250,000 for the Verizon Scholars Program. Verizon's contribution will provide approximately $2,500 each to an average of 50 juniors and 50 seniors, putting a City University of New York STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education within reach of many qualified students who might not otherwise be able to complete their studies.
- Met Council -- $100,000 for the Met Council Family Violence Program to enable it to meet the increasing need for high-quality services for victims of domestic violence in New York City. With renewed Verizon Foundation funding, Met Council will continue to provide victims of domestic violence with comprehensive social, legal and community advocacy services to help them obtain safety and lasting self-sufficiency.
- Equinox Inc. -- $50,000 for its Survivor Support and Entrepreneurship Project. Funding will be used to enable Hudson Valley Community College and Equinox, a nonprofit agency that serves survivors of domestic violence in the Albany area, to provide workforce development and entrepreneurship training and support to domestic violence survivors.
- Syracuse University -- $50,000 for the Verizon Entrepreneur Program. The WISE Women's Business Center (Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship) and Vera House, in collaboration with the South Side Innovation Center, will utilize the grant for a program to empower survivors of domestic violence through entrepreneurship and business ownership.
- Everywoman Opportunity Center -- $50,000 for the Fresh Start - Helping Domestic Violence Survivors Plan Businesses. Verizon's funding will support professional staff who will seek referrals of appropriate candidates from the Family Justice Center, the Erie County Department of Social Services, Haven House and other domestic violence shelters to develop and participate in a workforce development and entrepreneurship training program.
- The Salvation Army of Rochester -- $10,000 to support its Hope House Women and Children's Center. Hope House serves homeless women and their children, many of whom are also victims of domestic violence, by meeting their basic needs and helping them take important steps towards safety and self-sufficiency.
- Catholic Charities of Onondaga -- $10,000 to refurnish the living room at Dorothy Day House, the organization's women's shelter in Syracuse. A large, traditional living room is being transformed into a family-friendly space with new furniture and carpeting, creating play and work areas for women and their children.
The Verizon Foundation helps people to live healthy, safe and independent lives by addressing disparities in education, health care and sustainability. Since 2000, the Verizon Foundation has invested more than half a billion dollars to improve the communities where Verizon employees work and live. Verizon's employees are generous with their donations and their time, having logged more than 6.2 million hours of service to make a positive difference in their communities. For more information, visit www.verizonfoundation.org.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, with nearly 109 million total connections nationwide. Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers integrated business solutions to customers in more than 150 countries, including all of the Fortune 500. A Dow 30 company with $111 billion in 2011 revenues, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of nearly 194,000. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.