TAMPA, Fla., Dec. 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- WellCare Health Plans, Inc. (NYSE: WCG) announced today that it gave a total of $30,000 to nonprofit organizations across the country in honor of the company's 30th anniversary and #GivingTuesday. WellCare selected the organizations based on employee nominations and made awards in increments of $1,000 in recognition of each year the company has been serving lower income and medically complex populations.
#GivingTuesday is a global day dedicated to giving back to the community. Held on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, the day is meant to inspire people to contribute to charities and causes to strengthen communities and to help those with less.
"At WellCare, we have a strong culture of service grounded in helping our members and those who live in their communities live better and healthier," said Larry Anderson, WellCare's senior vice president and chief human resources officer. "This gesture is our way of recognizing the efforts of local social service organizations that help people meet their basic needs for food, shelter, clothing and safety – all of which have a significant impact on overall health."
In 1985, a group of Tampa-area physicians founded the company to manage health care for the economically disadvantaged, disabled and elderly. The first office was in a strip mall. Today, WellCare is ranked 234 on the FORTUNE 500 and is a leading provider of government-sponsored managed care services, serving more than 3.8 million members nationwide. The company remains committed to serving vulnerable Americans.
"The organizations we selected have a strong foothold in their local communities and are a vital part of sustaining the social safety net because they meaningfully reduce the impacts of poverty," said Blair Todt, WellCare's senior vice president and chief legal and administrative officer and secretary, and president of the WellCare Community Foundation. "Decreases in funding are causing local, community-based public assistance organizations to cut back services. Efforts such as this contribute to our holistic approach to help sustain the social safety net to support the health and vitality of our members, their families and communities at large."
After reviewing more than 350 requests, organizations focused on helping build stronger and healthier communities were entered into a pool from which the winners were randomly selected.
The 30 recipients of the $1,000 awards are:
- 1Voice Foundation, Brandon, Florida
- AFIRE of Pasco County, Inc., New Port Richey, Florida
- Bakas Horses for Handicapped, Tampa, Florida
- Best Buddies, statewide locations, Florida
- Boys and Girls Club of Tampa Bay, Tampa, Florida
- Brian Christopher Lanier Wings of Hope Foundation, Winter Park, Florida
- Domestic Violence Action Center, Honolulu, Hawaii
- Dress for Success Tampa Bay, Tampa, Florida
- Feel Beautiful Today, Roswell, Georgia
- Florida Institute for Community Studies (FICS), Tampa, Florida
- Food of Life Outreach Ministries, Inc., Florida City, Florida
- High Risk Hope, Inc., Tampa, Florida
- Hispanic Health Initiatives, Casselberry, Florida
- Homeless Empowerment Program (formerly HEP), Clearwater, Florida
- House of Ruth, Louisville, Kentucky
- Jacob's Touch, Tampa, Florida
- Lupus Foundation of America Inc., Washington, D.C.
- Mr. Strong Foundation, Inc., St. Petersburg, Florida
- Music & Memory, Mineola, New York
- Pleasant Valley Connection, Inc., Greenville, South Carolina
- Ronald McDonald House Charities of Tampa Bay, Tampa, Florida
- Senior Action, Greenville, South Carolina
- Share the Blessings Ministry, Port Charlotte, Florida
- Sickle Cell Association of Hillsborough County, Tampa, Florida
- Special Olympics of NY, New York, New York
- The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, New York, New York
- The National Wheelcats Association, Guthrie, Kentucky
- The Refuge at Jumper Creek, Inc., Bushnell, Florida
- The Spring of Tampa Bay, Inc., Tampa, Florida
- Yes! Of America United, Inc., Tampa, Florida
"Best Buddies Tampa Bay is extremely honored to receive this special $1,000 contribution from WellCare," said Vallye Adams, area director, Best Buddies Tampa. "It is incredible to have community partners who truly care about the well-being of those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). This contribution will be used to add more school programs that promote friendship, inclusion and leadership opportunities for individuals with and without IDD."
"On behalf of the over 3,000 needy children and families, who we serve each and every month with food, clothing and family services, we want to give a huge, heartfelt thank you to WellCare for their kind and generous gift of $1,000 dollars," said Minister Wayne Oxford, executive director, Food of Life Outreach Ministries Inc. "This gift will be added to our holiday fund, which will provide meals to 200 children and families who are in need this year. Thank you, thank you, thank you!"
"The 1Voice Foundation, which provides programs and services for children with cancer and their families, was thrilled and honored to be chosen to receive such a generous gift in honor of WellCare's 30th anniversary," said Mary Ann Massolio, executive director, 1Voice Foundation. "WellCare's generosity will provide funding for our equine therapy program, which is offered to children with cancer and their siblings to improve cognitive skills and to promote physical, occupational and emotional growth. It is a very special program that truly makes a difference in the lives of many children battling cancer."
About WellCare Health Plans, Inc. Headquartered in Tampa, Fla., WellCare Health Plans, Inc. (NYSE: WCG) focuses exclusively on providing government-sponsored managed care services, primarily through Medicaid, Medicare Advantage and Medicare Prescription Drug Plans, to families, children, seniors and individuals with complex medical needs. WellCare serves approximately 3.8 million members nationwide as of Sept. 30, 2015. For more information about WellCare, please visit the company's website at www.wellcare.com or view the company's videos at https://www.youtube.com/user/WellCareHealthPlan.
SOURCE WellCare Health Plans, Inc.