Verizon Business Teams With 'Marine Toys for Tots' for Annual Toy Drive

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. - Many underprivileged children will have a brighter holiday this year through Verizon Business' online gift-collection effort to provide toys for the U.S. Marine Corps' Marine Toys for Tots program.

Verizon Business employees based in the United States participated in a company-sponsored Virtual Toy Drive via the Internet.  They made cash contributions, which were matched dollar for dollar by the company, and they also donated toys at company locations around the country.  The average cash contribution from each participant was $45; the total has already surpassed last year's total of $50,000.  

"Because every child deserves to be happy at this time of year, Verizon Business and its employees nationwide helped the company present gifts for Toys for Tots," said Terri Dean, senior vice president of global communications for Verizon Business.  "Our goal was simple: unite the goodwill of our employees with matching company dollars to help put a smile on the faces of thousands of deserving children."

The Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, founded in 1947, delivered 18.5 million toys to 7.5 million children in 2005.  The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that nearly 13 million children will be living in poverty this holiday season.  The toys and money Verizon Business and its employees donated will help deliver a message of hope and make sure these children have a brighter holiday.   The Virtual Toy Drive is just one example of how Verizon Business is helping create good will this season in the communities where it does business.  Other company efforts include:

  • Providing a videoconference linking Marines in Iraq with their loved ones at Camp Pendleton, Calif., to help support military personnel and their families.

  • Offering free calling during the holiday season to U.S. troops in Iraq to help military families and loved ones stay connected around the world.

  • Contributing in the company's inaugural year to the sixth annual Season's Readings campaign, whereby the Verizon Foundation has teamed with Scholastic Inc. and the National Center for Family Literacy to send more than 40,000 "comfort kits" to children of the Gulf Coast to help them cope with emotional trauma from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita through reading, art therapy and journal writing.

  • Participating in various localized community relations activities involving partner organizations, throughout the holiday season.

News releases containing more information on the above programs are available at http://newscenter2.verizon.com/press-releases.

About Marine Toys for Tots
The Marine Toys for Tots Foundation, an IRS recognized 501(c)(3) not-for-profit Public charity, is the fund raising and support organization for the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program.  For more information, visit the Foundation's website at www.toysfortots.org or contact Major Bill Grein (sponsorship opportunities) or Major Brian Murray (local campaigns). Both can be reached at (703) 640-9433.

About Verizon Business
Verizon Business, a unit of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ), is a leading provider of advanced communications and information technology (IT) solutions to large business and government customers worldwide.  Combining unsurpassed global network reach with advanced technology and professional service capabilities, Verizon Business delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world.  For more information, visit www.verizonbusiness.com.