NEW YORK, June 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The NBCUniversal Foundation today announced the launch of its annual grant program, 21st Century Solutions, in partnership with the NBC Owned Television Stations. This program once again will award 30 grants totaling $1.2 million to local non-profit organizations in 10 markets, giving the organizations an opportunity to compete for recognition for their innovative, community-based programs in the areas of Civic Engagement, Education, Environment, Jobs and Economic Empowerment, Media Arts and Technology.
Grant submissions will be accepted starting today through July 31 in the 10 markets served by the NBC-owned stations: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas-Fort Worth, San Francisco Bay Area, Washington, D.C., Miami-Fort Lauderdale, San Diego and Connecticut.
"Innovation is the key to making a sustainable difference in our cities in the 21st century," said Beth Colleton, Senior Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility for NBCUniversal. "We are excited to build on last year's successful program to highlight new, bold initiatives driving forward ideas that combat the issues facing our communities and make them stronger."
21st Century Solutions supports initiatives designed to address emerging and ongoing community challenges in new and creative ways. By focusing on social innovation, the program hopes to encourage non-profit organizations that address these pressing matters with fresh perspectives.
"Our stations are proud to partner with some of the most innovative non-profit organizations in the communities we serve," said Valari Staab, President of the NBC Owned Television Stations. "21st Century Solutions enables us to help create positive change in the places where we live and serve."
Highlights from last year's 21st Century Solutions grantees include:
Opportunity Fund in the Bay Area received a grant last year for its Start2Save program, which combines financial education and savings incentives to help working families develop a life-long savings habit. "With our Start2Save accounts, families are building their own safety net as they work toward financial stability. Our clients are demonstrating that even very low-wage families can build savings, and they're doing it $20 at a time," said Eric Weaver, Opportunity Fund CEO. "With NBCUniversal supporting us, Opportunity Fund was able to bring this innovation to life, helping hundreds of families get on the path to a brighter future last year."
Additionally, DC Central Kitchen, located in the nation's capital, was chosen for a 21st Century Solutions grant in 2012 to support its Healthy Corners program. Healthy Corners distributes fresh produce and nutritious snacks to corner stores in low-income communities where healthy options are limited, simultaneously promoting local business development and better nutritional choices among residents. "What we try to show at DC Central Kitchen is that the work we and others do is not charity, but an economic driver of sustainability and revitalization in our shared community," said Michael Curtin, Jr., CEO of DC Central Kitchen. "NBCUniversal's investment in that work shows a deep understanding of this and helps us build 21st century solutions to 21st century challenges."
Interested 501(c)(3) organizations wishing to compete in the grant challenge can review the eligibility criteria and complete applications on the NBC stations' websites in the 10 markets. One winning organization and two runners-up will be awarded grants in each city. The recipients will be announced by the end of 2013. The 21st Century Solutions program is funded by the NBCUniversal Foundation with promotional support from the 10 NBC Owned Stations.
To watch an interview with some of last year's grant recipients about the programs that were funded through 21st Century Solutions, please click here.
About NBC Owned Television Stations
NBC Owned Television Stations is the division of NBCUniversal that includes 10 local television stations and their websites and digital platforms, as well as a group of out-of-home properties, a production company and COZI TV (www.cozitv.com). The 10 stations produce and deliver compelling and unique local news, information and entertainment programming to viewers in the communities they serve, which include New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco Bay Area, Dallas-Fort Worth, Washington, D.C., Miami, San Diego and Connecticut, with a goal of connecting to their audiences anytime and anywhere.
NBCUniversal is one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. NBCUniversal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment television networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, world-renowned theme parks, and a suite of leading Internet-based businesses. NBCUniversal is owned by Comcast Corporation.