Thirty-Three Pennsylvania Nonprofits Reap Nearly $200,000 in Literacy Grants From Verizon

A dollar a month may not seem like much, but it can go a long way to improving literacy skills in local communities across Pennsylvania while also giving people the opportunity to succeed.

Thanks to the generosity of Verizon's Pennsylvania landline customers who participated in the company's Check Into Literacy program, 33 nonprofit organizations throughout the state have received nearly $200,000 in grants to support their literacy programs.

"This program is a classic example of a little bit going a long way to address a significant challenge for our society," said Gale Y. Given, president of Verizon Pennsylvania.  "Verizon customers who participated in the program have shown how much they care about literacy and our communities, and we applaud them for it."

The program enables Verizon landline phone customers to support literacy by checking a box on their monthly phone bills to make a $1 tax-deductible donation.  Verizon then distributes these donations to local literacy organizations that serve the individual states in which the customers live.

Contributions from Pennsylvania residents are part of more than $645,000 given this year through Verizon's Check Into Literacy program to literacy organizations throughout the country.

Grants have been awarded to the following organizations in Pennsylvania:

  • Allegheny County Library Association, Pittsburgh - $5,000.
  • Benjamin Franklin Academics, Philadelphia - $5,000.
  • Blair County Literacy Council, Altoona - $5,000.
  • Bucks County Schools Intermediate Unit Educational Foundation, Doylestown - $5,000.
  • Cambria Library Association, Johnstown - $5,000.
  • Care Center Foundation, West Chester - $5,000.
  • Erie Times-News in Education, Erie - $5,000.
  • Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation, Philadelphia - $25,000.
  • Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council, Pittsburgh - $10,000.
  • Greensburg Hempfield Area Library, Greensburg - $5,000.
  • Helen Kate Furness Free Library, Wallingford - $5,000.
  • Indiana Free Library, Indiana - $5,000.
  • Lehigh Valley Community Foundation/Allentown Public Library, Allentown - $5,000.
  • Lehighton Area School District, Lehighton - $5,000.
  • Literacy Council of Reading-Berks Inc., West Lawn - $5,000.
  • Mid-State Literacy Council, State College - $5,000.
  • Northwestern Human Services Foundation Inc., Lafayette Hill - $5,000.
  • Penn Wood Elementary School, West Chester - $1,500.
  • Penn State Brandywine, Media - $4,500.
  • Pennsylvania Association for Adult Continuing Education, Pittsburgh - $10,000.
  • Philadelphia Academies, Philadelphia - $10,000.
  • Philadelphia Young Playwrights, Philadelphia - $10,000.
  • Scranton Public Library, Scranton - $5,000.
  • Silver Springs-Martin Luther School, Plymouth Meeting - $3,500.
  • Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Immaculata - $5,000.
  • Temple University - Grandma's Kids, Philadelphia - $2,500.
  • The Center for Literacy, Philadelphia - $5,000.
  • The Wilma Theater, Philadelphia - $4,600.
  • Washington County Community Foundation, Washington - $5,000.
  • Washington County Literacy Council, Washington - $3,500.
  • Wayne County Public Library, Honesdale - $5,000.
  • Williamsport Area School District, Williamsport - $5,000.
  • York County Literacy Council, York - $5,000.   

The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, supports the advancement of literacy and K-12 education through its free educational website, Verizon Thinkfinity (www.thinkfinity.org), and fosters awareness and prevention of domestic violence.  In 2009, the Verizon Foundation awarded $67.9 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in the U.S. and abroad.  It also matched the charitable donations of Verizon employees and retirees, resulting in $26.1 million in combined contributions to nonprofits.  Through Verizon Volunteers, one of the nation's largest employee volunteer programs, Verizon employees and retirees have volunteered more than 5 million hours of community service since 2000. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizonfoundation.org.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, NASDAQ:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving more than 92 million customers nationwide.  Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers innovative, seamless business solutions to customers around the world.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon last year generated consolidated revenues of more than $107 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.