Verizon Foundation Provides $100,000 in Grants to Eight North Texas Public Library Systems

IRVING, Texas - Eight public libraries throughout North Texas will share $100,000 in grants from the Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, to fund library programs in literacy, including e-literacy.

Earlier this year, the foundation asked public libraries in Verizon's North Texas local phone service territory to submit grant proposals that advance literacy and e-literacy skills.

The foundation, after evaluating all the proposals, will award grants this month and next to eight public library systems in Flower Mound, Garland, Grapevine, Irving, Keller, Lewisville, Plano and Rowlett through their nonprofit 501(c)3 organizations. The grants reflect a diverse array of innovative programs.

The eight cities are among two dozen in North Texas where Verizon continues to build out its 100 percent fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) fiber-optic network that provides voice, ultra-fast Internet connections and in-home television service.

"Public libraries are one of our communities' greatest assets, offering literacy resources to everyone in a safe, educational atmosphere," said Steve Banta, Verizon Southwest region president. "Through these grants, libraries will be able to enhance or implement programs giving families, adults and children an opportunity to enjoy literacy programs in many of the community libraries and learn the joys of reading. So not only is Verizon bringing the most advanced fiber-optic technology to many of our North Texas customers, but we are also helping to improve the overall quality of life through our literacy grants."

Verizon will present grants to the following city library systems:

  • Garland Public Library - $15,000 for a Born to Read program that encourages new parents to promote literacy. The program provides parents with information on how to instill the love of reading in children and will also provide books.

  • Grapevine Public Library - $10,000 for new books and media materials focused on English as a second language.

  • Flower Mound Public Library - $14,938 for a Computer Literacy for Life program that provides basic computer classes for residents with no or very limited computer experience.

  • Irving Public Library - $15,000 for literacy software and hardware to establish a dedicated literacy lab.

  • Keller Public Library - $11,000 for literacy software and hardware that enables residents to access computers and Web-based e-learning literacy programs with emphasis on Spanish-speaking users.

  • Lewisville Public Library - $15,000 for hardware and software that allows residents to access computers, and also provides Web based e-learning literacy programs.

  • Plano Public Library - $4,062 for literacy training manuals and student materials for the city's Literacy for Life program.

  • Rowlett Public Library - $15,000 for a Family Literacy program with special emphasis on GED and reading comprehension.

In 2004, the Verizon Foundation awarded more than 26,000 grants totaling more than $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.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), a Dow 30 company, is a leader in delivering broadband and other communication innovations to wireline and wireless customers. Verizon operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving 49.3 million customers nationwide, and one of the nation's premier wireline networks, serving home, business and wholesale customers in 28 states. Based in New York, Verizon has a diverse workforce of nearly 215,000 and generates annual revenues of more than $71 billion from four business segments: Domestic Telecom, Domestic Wireless, Information Services and International. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.

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