Work Force Development and Literacy Grants Available For Nonprofits Serving New Yorkers

NEW YORK - Nonprofit organizations engaged in work force development and literacy initiatives for New Yorkers are invited to compete for $500,000 in grants to be distributed this year by Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications.

The foundation has issued a request for proposals (RFP) seeking applications from nonprofit 501 (c)(3) organizations and eligible educational institutions serving people within Verizon New York's service area, as well as Greenwich and Byram, Conn. areas served by Verizon. Grant proposals are due by June 15. The foundation will award one-year grants, ranging from $25,000 to $100,000 each. Preference will be given to projects and programs that involve partnerships among nonprofit organizations.

''The future economic health of our region depends on a skilled and literate work force,'' said Paul Crotty, group president for Verizon in New York and Connecticut. ''We are eager to support creative and innovative initiatives that use current and emerging technology to help create a skilled work force, provide opportunities for personal growth for the participants, and result in long-term, sustainable benefits for the community.

''We're particularly interested in proposals relating to work force preparation and computer literacy training for individuals who are seeking work but lack the skills needed in today's new economy,'' Crotty said.

To promote technology and more effectively serve the nonprofit community, Verizon Foundation has made all of its programs available online. The foundation requires that all grant applications be made online at its Web site (www.verizon.com/foundation). On the Web site, click on the New York State/Connecticut Workforce Development and Literacy RFP link.

Educational institutions and other nonprofit organizations with questions regarding the application process may contact the Verizon community affairs manager in their area by writing to verizon.rfp@verizon.com

Grant recipients will be announced on Sept. 27.

Verizon 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 across the United States and selected foreign countries. The foundation also supports Verizon Volunteers, an incentive program that encourages Verizon employees to volunteer in their communities and provides matching gifts for nonprofit organizations.

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 112 million access line equivalents and 27 million wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. A Fortune 10 company with approximately 260,000 employees and more than $65 billion in annual revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com