Wisconsin Nonprofits Received More Than $233,000 in Verizon Foundation Grants in 2007

SUN PRAIRIE, Wis. - Wisconsin nonprofits received more than $233,000 from the Verizon Foundation in 2007, enabling the 125 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 Paul Fuglie, Verizon vice president-external affairs in Wisconsin.  "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 and for whom a phone can open a line to hope," Fuglie said.

In 2007, the Verizon Foundation provided nearly $144,000 in direct grants to 17 nonprofit groups in Wisconsin.  Grants included $50,000 to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction to expand Thinkfinity.org educational resources in the state; $13,500 to Wisconsin Literacy Inc. to recruit and train new tutors; and $10,000 to Advocates of Ozaukee to expand domestic violence prevention resources.

Others receiving direct grants included Aspirus Health Foundation, Edgar School District, Forward Wisconsin, Hope Network, Marathon County Literacy Council, Menomonee Falls Library Friends, Merrill Wrestling Club, Portage Curling Association, Sun Prairie Chamber Foundation, The Women's Community, Two Rivers Main Street, Wausau Area Performing Arts Foundation, Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault and the Wisconsin Law Alumni Association.

In addition, 108 other organizations received more than $83,000 through the foundation's Verizon Volunteers program, which rewards employees with matching grants to nonprofits that employees donate to and support.  Last year, Verizon employees volunteered more than 3,800 hours to nonprofit groups across the Badger 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.  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.