CHESAPEAKE, Va., April 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Imagine a world where all children, regardless of socioeconomic status, had the same opportunities to succeed. A world where access to learning was free and readily available; resources such as books, computers, paper, pens and teachers were available in their community; and summers were spent learning and preparing for the upcoming school year rather than letting the past year of educational instruction fall by the wayside.
It is an unfortunate reality: not all children have access to a safe environment to learn when they are not in school.
Nonprofits across Virginia have developed programs to address this issue. But, many don't get the funding required to implement these much-needed programs. That's where Cox Charities steps in. It's the philanthropic arm of Cox Communications Virginia that annually awards grants to deserving nonprofits that want to provide services to today's youth to help them be successful in school and get them on the right track to a bright future.
Programs like An Achievable Dream whose mission is to help children learn and succeed through education in an effort to break the cycle of poverty. Or, Educacion Para Nuestro Futuro's Emerging Leaders Program (ELP), a college prep and leadership development program for low-income Latino and immigrant youth in Northern Virginia. Consider Boys and Girls Clubs of Southwest Virginia who offers a Makerspace STEM program for K-12 children in low-income families who have limited access to programs in the Roanoke Valley.
These are just three of the 15 programs that Cox Charities supported this year through its 2016-2017 grant program. The charity provides funding to nonprofit groups supporting youth education, technology, mentoring and literacy within Cox Virginia communities. These grants, totaling $150,000, are part of the millions of dollars Cox Virginia contributes annually through cash and in-kind support to the communities where it does business.
These are the extraordinary organizations who will each receive a $10,000 Cox Charities grant this year:
Hampton Roads – 7 nonprofits, $70,000 awarded
An Achievable Dream – Uses the SAME (Social, Academic and Moral Education) Curriculum to help children develop life skills through education to break the cycle of poverty. Funds from the Cox Charities grant will support the "What it Takes" workforce readiness program, serving 1,250 students from the inner-city area of Newport News.
ForKids – Funds will support programs like Children's Education Program and Beyond the Bell for 135 homeless children attending Chesapeake Public Schools. These programs help to close the achievement gap and provide tutoring for students in need.
Horizons Hampton Roads – Horizons partners with schools in Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach to help eliminate the achievement gap between low-income children and their affluent peers through a 6-week summer enrichment program. More than 400 children in grades K-8 from low-income communities participate; the program shows 2-3 months of learning gains for these children year after year.
REACH – REACH (Reading Enriches All Children) coordinates literacy programs for children living in homeless and domestic violence shelters in the Hampton Roads area. Funds from this grant will support nearly 1,000 kids who benefit from Read-Aloud sessions and help REACH put books in the hands of children in need.
The Salvation Army – Hampton Roads Area Command – The HOPE Village Program (Homeless Outreach for Personal Empowerment) offers housing and counseling needs for homeless mothers and children. Cox Charities grant funds will support tutoring, literacy comprehension, mentoring, computer lab sessions, field trips, the STEM summer camp program and the Back to School reading challenge for 69 students in Norfolk, Portsmouth, Chesapeake and Virginia Beach.
The Up Center – The Up Center will receive funds to maintain and expand its volunteer mentoring program for children in South Hampton Roads living in single-parent households. The mentoring program is based on the Big Brothers Big Sisters model, serving at-risk youth aged 6-17. This is a volunteer-based program that, in 2016, served 139 youth.
Virginia Peninsula Foodbank – Funds will support the Food for Kids BackPack program serving students from low-income families at risk for food insecurity. Providing children with proper nutrition improves the learning process for students. Food is provided so children stay nourished over the weekend and during school holidays. Food is distributed every Friday for 30 weeks during the school year.
Northern Virginia – 5 nonprofits, $50,000 awarded
Educacion Para Nuestro Futuro – Funds will support the Emerging Leaders Program (ELP), a college prep and leadership development program for Latino and immigrant youth from low-income families in Northern Virginia. The program is made up of a 7-week series, including a Robotics Club, and serves a total of more than 220 students in grades 6-12.
Main Street Child Development Center – Serving 90 children per day (125 annually), Main Street provides early childhood education for children from low-income families. Funds will support the full-day programs that operate year-round, including classrooms that feature a 6:1 student to teacher ratio and Spanish curriculum for students.
Hopecam – Hopecam works with hospitals, social workers and cancer organizations to help children with cancer overcome social isolation through technology. Funds will support their goal to connect upwards of 350 children per year.
Fairfax Futures – Building a child's exposure to early STEM experiences strengthens his or her school readiness. Funds will help to engage 150 children and their families through the STEM Connections program, in collaboration with five Fairfax County early childhood education programs.
Literacy Council of Northern Virginia – The Family Learning Program (FLP) provides English literacy instruction for children 2-14 and their low-income, immigrant families in Fairfax County. Funds will help purchase books, supplies, assessment kits and other resources needed to actively engage parents so they can help their children achieve higher academic gains.
Roanoke – 3 nonprofits, $30,000 awarded
Boys & Girls Clubs of Southwest Virginia – The Makerspace STEM program is for 150 K-12 children in low-income families who have limited access to programs. Delivers weekly after-school programming during the academic year and a 2-week summer day camp.
Child Health Investment Partnership of Roanoke Valley – Literacy for Little Ones is a program that aims to improve literacy for low-income children by providing books, home visits, and kindergarten readiness to 1,000 students. Additionally, offers story time reading events at the local library.
Total Action for Progress – TAP Project Discovery is a college-access prep program to help low-income youth, potentially first-generation college students, to realize post-secondary goals. Offered to middle and high school students and includes group mentorship, monthly workshops, field trips focused on STEM and one visit to a college each semester.
"It is truly our honor to provide financial support to organizations in Cox communities that are working with young people to improve their lives and help them succeed," said J.D. Myers II, senior vice president and region manager for Cox Virginia. "We're supporting youth education because it's the right thing to do and because our future depends on it. All children should have the same educational opportunities regardless of socioeconomic status; the Cox Charities grant program is in place to help eliminate the gaps that currently exist."
Philanthropy through Cox Charities:
Cox Charities awards grants on an annual basis and is open to qualifying organizations. Qualifying organizations must provide education programs that further the academic achievement and development of young people through science and technology, mentoring, literacy and other areas promoting youth education.
Criteria used in selecting the winning submissions, included (but was not limited to): how well the applicant demonstrated a pressing need; how well the applicant demonstrated use of technology, innovation and/or creative techniques in service delivery; and how well the applicant demonstrated the sustainability of the program as well as the ability for their program to be replicated.
Cox Communications is grateful to the Advisory Committee of distinguished representatives who selected the winning organizations. The Advisory Committee is comprised of community leaders, business leaders and Cox employees. For a full list of advisory committee members and for more information on the Cox Charities grant awards program, please visit www.coxcharities.org.
Media Contact: Emma Inman, APR, 757-222-8432 or firstname.lastname@example.org
About Cox Communications
Cox Communications is a broadband communications and entertainment company, providing advanced digital video, Internet, telephone and home security and automation services over its own nationwide IP network. The third-largest U.S. cable company, Cox serves approximately 6 million residences and businesses. Cox Business is a facilities-based provider of voice, video and data solutions for commercial customers, and Cox Media is a full-service provider of national and local cable spot and digital media advertising. Cox is known for its pioneering efforts in cable telephone and commercial services, industry-leading customer care and its outstanding workplaces. For eight years, Cox has been recognized as the top operator for women by Women in Cable Telecommunications; Cox has ranked among DiversityInc's Top 50 Companies for Diversity 10 times, including the last nine years. More information about Cox Communications, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises, is available at www.cox.com and www.coxmedia.com.
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SOURCE Cox Communications