Verizon Supports Nonprofit Groups in Oregon & Washington to Promote Literacy, Technology and Work Force Development

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BEAVERTON, Or. - Verizon reaffirmed its commitment to the communities that the company serves in the Northwest by providing grants in 2003 for a broad range of literacy, work force development, technology and human service programs.

Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, last year contributed $910,900 to 111 nonprofit groups in the Northwest. Nationwide, the foundation donated about $70 million to worthy causes and charities, including matching nearly $14 million in donations from employees through volunteer incentive programs the foundation offers to employees.

"We believe in investing in our communities through strategic partnerships with organizations that support education and literacy, technology education, and health and human services," said Verizon Northwest External Affairs Director John Gustafson. "Verizon's grants continue to underscore our long-standing goal of improving the communities we serve and our commitment to providing excellent service to our customers."

Local organizations seeking literacy grants from the Verizon Foundation this year should visit and apply online by March 12 to be considered for funding. Grants will be awarded in April.

Recipients of major grants in Oregon included:

  • Business Education Compact (Beaverton) -- $10,000 for a project to provide career planning assistance, pre-employment training and business internships to Native American youth, encouraging them to finish high school and pursue careers.

  • Portland Community College -- $15,000 to establish a PCC ELATED program at Centro Cultural in Cornelius. The program will enable Hispanics in western Washington County to use technology to improve their English language skills and acquire computer skills necessary for employment.

  • Self Enhancement Inc. (SEI) of Portland -- $10,000 to raise achievement levels for inner-city students by increasing the academic rigor of structured tutorial time. An academic reading specialist for SEI's after-school program has developed a comprehensive reading module for 30 students from Boise Eliot Elementary School.

In addition, literacy grants were awarded to Oregon Literacy; The Forest Grove Literacy Council; Centro Cultural, Cornelius; Catholic Charities, Beaverton; Clackamas Community College Foundation; Mt. Hood Literacy Coalition, Gresham; Coos County Literacy Council; Friends of the Coos Bay Library; SWOYA Volunteer Clubs, Coos Bay; Enterprise School District; Oregon Children's Foundation; Beaverton Literacy Council; and Beaverton Library Foundation.

In support of technology education and work force development, Verizon also awarded grants to the Mt. Hood Community College Foundation, Gresham; Oregon Children's Theatre, Portland; Oregon Independent College Foundation; Oregon Korean Community Center, Beaverton; Oregon Native American Entrepreneurial Network, Tigard; Portland State University Foundation; Salvation Army, Coos Bay; Sherwood Family YMCA; United Way of the Mid-Willamette, Salem; United Way of Yamhill County; and Wallowa County Business Facilitation, Joseph.

In addition to the Verizon Foundation grants, 410 agencies and educational institutions received more than $343,000 through Verizon Volunteers, a program that encourages Verizon employees to volunteer in their communities and provides matching gifts to the nonprofit organizations that employees support.

Verizon Foundation ranks as one of the largest corporate foundations in America, providing grants and developing programs to support the communities where Verizon does business. The foundation places special emphasis on literacy, work force development and the use of technology for the benefit of all people. For more information on the foundation, visit

A Fortune 10 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $68 billion in annual revenues. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. Verizon's international presence includes wireline and wireless communications operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit


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