NEW YORK, Sept. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- To honor the 9/11 National Day of Service and Remembrance, New York City AT&T employees and retirees are participating in acts of service throughout the month. In remembrance of the 10-year anniversary of the attacks, 9/11 nonprofit groups MyGoodDeed and HandsOn Network, the volunteer activation division of Points of Light Institute, are co-leading efforts to organize one million Americans in acts of charitable service.
As part of the 9/11 Remembrance activity, AT&T Pioneers, a volunteer organization comprising AT&T employees and retirees, are participating in the national Pioneers Dish It Up food drive campaign from now through September 25. Pioneers, the largest industry-related volunteer organization in the world, recently announced the launch of Dish It Up: Feeding Families Healthy Food, a massive volunteer initiative spanning the U.S. and Canada with a goal of feeding a healthy meal to one million people who struggle to put food on the table. Dish It Up is part of Pioneers 100th anniversary celebration.
As part of New York's Pioneers Dish it Up program, AT&T retail locations and other locations around the city will be participating, through September 25, in a food drive -- with food bins available within stores. In addition, AT&T Pioneers will collect healthy, nutritious, non-perishable food items, transport donations to community food programs such as local shelters, soup kitchens and food pantries. AT&T Pioneers will ask their coworkers to drop off healthy food at designated sites in hopes of collecting 700,000 pounds of food during the two-week campaign.
The Food Bank For New York City and City Harvest are supporting the effort in the city by lending their support and collecting food bins throughout the city. AT&T hosted a special rush-hour food drive event today at its retail store at 381 Madison, between 46th and 47th, to highlight the effort and bring attention to the work of the two organizations.
"AT&T is grateful for those who honor our county, city and state with community service," said Amy Hines Kramer, vice president of external affairs, AT&T New York. "Dish It Up helps strengthen the critical bond between our business and our communities -- we applaud the Food Bank For New York City and City Harvest for their leadership in this program."
"I'm proud to be standing here with AT&T in support of this local food drive," said newly-elected New York Assemblymember Dan Quart, "and am extremely pleased to see such a responsible partnership with the community -- and appreciate the efforts of all involved to address the issue of lack of quality food for those who need it most."
New York University students also will be partnering with the Pioneers on campus during this two week period to assist the collection effort.
Individuals or organizations are encouraged to donate healthy food to the drive by going to our Facebook page "Dish it Up! NYC" for a list of food collection and drop-off sites in their community or follow us on twitter at #DishitupNYC.
Examples of healthy food that Pioneers are collecting include:
- Whole wheat pastas
- Brown rice
- Canned fruit (packed in own juice)
- Canned vegetables
- Canned meats (tuna, salmon, ham, chicken or turkey)
- Canned or dry beans (such as black, kidney, pinto, navy, garbanzo)
- Peanut butter (plastic jars, please)
Pioneers are also accepting financial contributions for this project at www.pioneersvolunteer.org/donations.
To honor those who perished and those who rose to service after the tragedy, AT&T employees, through AT&T Cares, are focusing efforts on three main initiatives. Across the U.S., more than 140,000 AT&T employees are volunteering to benefit their communities through 110 Pioneers Dish It Up food drives; Cell Phones for Soldiers 100 recycling drives; and a 4,000 employee Job Shadow recruitment drive to encourage additional employees to volunteer and team up with students. Through the AT&T/JA Worldwide Job Shadow Initiative, AT&T employees are helping students learn about careers and develop an understanding of the educational background and skills they will need to succeed on the job.
In 2010, through AT&T Cares, AT&T employees and retirees, including AT&T Pioneers, donated 9 million hours of time in 2010 to community outreach activities, valued at more than $192 million. In addition, more than $148.2 million was contributed through corporate-, employee- and AT&T Foundation-giving programs.
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About Philanthropy at AT&T
AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) is committed to advancing education, strengthening communities and improving lives. Through its philanthropic initiatives and working with other organizations, AT&T has a long history of supporting projects that create learning opportunities; promote academic and economic achievement; and address community needs. In 2010, more than $148.2 million was contributed through corporate-, employee- and AT&T Foundation-giving programs.
AT&T Cares is a company-wide initiative providing a range of volunteer options and support, encouraging employees to engage, and remain engaged, in community service that is meaningful to them and their communities. Since AT&T Cares launched, in the summer of 2009, employees have shown an overwhelming desire to participate and employee volunteerism is up more than 500,000 hours over the previous year. In 2010, employees and retirees, including the AT&T Pioneers and Employee Resource Groups, donated 9 million hours of time to community outreach activities – worth more than $192 million.
About AT&T Pioneers
Founded in 1911 as the Telephone Pioneers of America with Alexander Graham Bell as one of the first members, the Pioneers continue to build on the millions of hours dedicated to helping others. More than 300,000 AT&T employees and retirees are involved in the AT&T Pioneers volunteer organization AT&T Pioneers are leading hundreds of projects in 2011 that celebrate and honor the organization's 100th Anniversary of community service.
About The Food Bank For New York City
Food Bank For New York City has spent 28 years as the city's major hunger-relief organization working to end food poverty throughout the five boroughs. As the city's hub for integrated food poverty assistance, the Food Bank tackles the hunger issue on three fronts — food distribution, income support and nutrition education — all strategically guided by the organization's research. Through its network of approximately 1,000 community-based member programs citywide, the Food Bank helps provide 400,000 free meals a day for New Yorkers in need. The Food Bank's hands-on nutrition education program in the public schools reaches thousands of children, teens and adults. Income support services including food stamps, free tax assistance for the working poor and the Earned Income Tax Credit put millions of dollars back in the pockets of low-income New Yorkers, helping them to achieve greater dignity and independence. To learn more, visit: www.foodbanknyc.org.
About City Harvest
Now serving New York City for more than 25 years, City Harvest (www.CityHarvest.org) is the world's first food rescue organization, dedicated to feeding the city's hungry men, women, and children. This year, City Harvest will collect more than 30 million pounds of excess food from all segments of the food industry, including restaurants, grocers, corporate cafeterias, manufacturers, and farms. This food is then delivered free of charge to nearly 600 community food programs throughout New York City using a fleet of trucks and bikes as well as volunteers on foot. Each week, City Harvest helps over 300,000 hungry New Yorkers find their next meal.
 The financial equivalent is determined by using $21.36/per volunteer hour, which is based on the 2010 industry standard from Independent Sector, a leading nonprofit organization that determines the financial equivalent for a variety of volunteer initiatives.
SOURCE AT&T Inc.