West Virginia Nonprofits Received More Than $625,000 in Verizon Foundation Grants in 2007

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - More than 365 nonprofit groups in West Virginia received more than $625,000 from the Verizon Foundation in 2007, enabling the recipient organizations to improve basic literacy skills, create new and diverse approaches to technology-based learning, and help domestic violence victims rebuild their lives.

The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications and one of the largest corporate foundations in the world, awarded a total of $67.4 million in grants last year. 

"Our efforts are rooted in a century-old tradition of giving back to the communities we serve, guided by the firm belief that technology can have a profound and positive effect on social issues," said B. Keith Fulton, president of Verizon West Virginia.  "Our foundation makes a positive difference by supporting and investing in the people and organizations striving to improve the quality of life in our communities - where our customers and employees live and work.

"That difference can be made in the progress of our children as they study to meet the challenge of learning and working in the 21st century; in the lives of millions of Americans with low literacy skills who are unable to complete a job application or even read a menu; and in the lives of men and women who live in abusive and deadly situations for whom a phone can open a line to hope," Fulton said.

In 2007, the Verizon Foundation provided more than $275,000 grants to 50 nonprofit groups in West Virginia.  Grants included $50,000 to the YWCA Safe Date program to address domestic violence issues; $75,000 to West Virginia State University Extension Service for an after school literacy program at several Charleston area housing sites; and $34,000 to the West Virginia University Extension Service for the Wired and Wonderful Technology Camp held in July at Jackson's Mill for 4-H members.

More than 315 other organizations received nearly $350,000 through the foundation's Verizon Volunteers program, which rewards employees with matching gifts and grants to nonprofits that employees donate to and support.  Last year, Verizon employees volunteered nearly 16,000 hours to nonprofit groups across the Mountain State.

The Verizon Foundation is committed to improving literacy and K-12 education; fostering awareness and prevention of domestic violence; and promoting the use of technology in health-care delivery.  In 2007, the foundation awarded $67.4 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in the United States and abroad.  Under the foundation's Verizon Volunteer initiative, one of the nation's largest employee-volunteer programs, company employees and retirees have also contributed nearly 3 million hours of community service since Verizon's inception in 2000.

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

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, 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 63.7 million customers nationwide.  Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon has a diverse workforce of nearly 238,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $88 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.