Bell Atlantic Mobile Marks Opening of Second Lehigh Valley Communication Store with Donation to Area Women's Shelter

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Bell Atlantic Mobile Marks Opening of Second Lehigh Valley Communication Store with Donation to Area Women's Shelter

November 6, 1998

Media contact:Meghan O'Shea
(215) 732-4100

ALLENTOWN, Pa. -- In celebration of the opening of Bell Atlantic Mobile's newest Communications Store, located in the Lehigh Valley Mall, the company is donating 30 voice mail boxes to Turning Point of the Lehigh Valley, a local domestic violence shelter. The initiative is part of the company's HopeLine program, and the voice mail boxes will be used by shelter residents to obtain confidential messages from potential employers, family and friends.

"Bell Atlantic Mobile is proud to be able to make today's donation as we open our second store in the Lehigh Valley," said Lorie Schiffgens, store manager. "It is our hope that the donation to Turning Point will - in some small way - assist shelter residents in breaking the cycle of domestic violence and in rebuilding their lives."

"We are thrilled to accept Bell Atlantic Mobile's donation of voice mail boxes to our organization," said Terri Fichera, director of Turning Point of the Lehigh Valley. "These communication tools will allow shelter residents to maintain an important line of communication with loved ones during an extremely stressful time, and also help secure jobs which leads to independence."

Bell Atlantic Mobile's HopeLine program is a charitable initiative developed by the company that provides free voice mail service to individuals who do not have access to a personal phone line. Distributed to homeless individuals and victims of domestic violence staying in shelters along the East Coast, HopeLine provides a vital link to the outside world and acts as a building block to a productive, more fulfilling future. In addition, using a voice mail box gives these individuals a consistent point of contact, protects their privacy, and helps eliminate stigmas associated with residing in a shelter.

"The donation of voice mail boxes to Turning Point is just one of the many ways that Bell Atlantic Mobile will be partnering with the Lehigh Valley community," said Ms. Schiffgens.

The new store is located on the first-floor of the Lehigh Valley Mall and is staffed by a team of communications consultants, specially trained to customize Bell Atlantic Mobile's wireless services to meet customers' lifestyles. The store, which opened in October, is having grand opening activities and promotions throughout the weekend. In the Lehigh Valley, the company also operates a store in Whitehall.

Bell Atlantic Mobile owns and operates the largest wireless network in the East, covering 116,000 square miles, and the largest chain of retail outlets devoted exclusively to wireless voice, data and paging. Based in Bedminster, NJ, Bell Atlantic Mobile has 5.9 million customers and 7,500 employees from Maine to Georgia and, through a separate subsidiary, in the Southwest. Through its "Wireless at Work..." community service program, the company uses its technology to help individuals and communities improve security and emergency communications. Bell Atlantic Mobile's parent is one of the world's largest wireless communications companies, with domestic operations in 25 states and international investments in Mexico, Europe and the Pacific Rim.

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