Hoover Elementary School's Youth Power Club Awarded Verizon Wireless HopeLine Hero Award In New Jersey

BERGENFIELD, NJ — Students from Hoover Elementary School's Youth Power Club have been named Verizon Wireless HopeLine® Heroes in recognition of their outstanding support of the company's HopeLine wireless phone recycling program. David Samberg, community relations manager for the company's New York Metro region, presented a plaque to members of the club at the school last week.

Earlier this year, the Youth Power Club held a HopeLine phone drive and collected old and unused wireless phones. The phones will be refurbished, recycled or sold and the proceeds donated to domestic violence advocacy groups or used to purchase wireless phones for survivors. Phones that cannot be refurbished are disposed of in an environmentally friendly manner.

"We created the HopeLine Hero Award to express our gratitude to dedicated people like these fifth graders who have gone above and beyond to support the HopeLine phone recycling program," Samberg said. "The award is our way of saying thank you, but we believe the students' true reward is the personal satisfaction of knowing they are helping families in need while protecting the environment."

The Youth Power Club is a program that teaches Bergenfield fifth grade students the importance of working together to help others. Lynn Schweighardt, coordinator of Hoover School program was instrumental in motivating students to collect phones from residents in Bergenfield and the surrounding area. Earlier this year, Schweighardt learned that Verizon Wireless was encouraging residents to recycle wireless phones that may have been replaced with newer models during the holidays.

"So many of us have cell phones, and when we get a new one we don't know what to do with the one we're no longer using," said Schweighardt. "HopeLine provided us with a project that was fairly easy to implement and benefited both the environment and those in need. And our students learned that, by working together, we have the power to make a difference is people's lives."

Verizon Wireless was the first wireless carrier in the nation to collect and recycle old cell phones and has done so since January 1999, first in New Jersey and then across the U.S. Nationally, the HopeLine program has collected more than 4.5 million wireless phones, and given nearly $5 million in cash grants and nearly 60,000 phones with airtime to domestic violence prevention organizations.

In addition to a successful phone recycling program and funding for non-profit domestic violence prevention organizations, HopeLine includes free wireless service and voice mailboxes for survivors, community and corporate awareness initiatives, and a bilingual "Invest in Yourself" program designed to help survivors re-enter the workforce.

HopeLine phone donations also are accepted at the store located at Route 4 in Paramus and at all Verizon Wireless Communications Stores in New Jersey and across the nation. For store locations and additional information, visit www.verizonwireless.com/hopeline.  

About Verizon Wireless Verizon Wireless operates the nation's most reliable wireless voice and data network, serving 65.7 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with 69,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). For more information, go to: www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.