NEW YORK, Dec. 7, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), announced today that the company will donate $520,000 to Special Olympics as a result of the success of its Invest in Something Special effort. The weeklong social media campaign was designed to share the goals and dreams of Special Olympics athletes on social media and raise money for local U.S. Programs.
"The personal stories of these Special Olympics athletes touched people around the world, as we saw from the overwhelming response on social media," said Voya Financial Chairman and CEO Rodney O. Martin Jr. "Nearly 21 million families in the U.S. have at least one member with a disability. Through our donation to Special Olympics, as well as other initiatives like Voya Cares, we're working to raise awareness of the unique challenges faced by these Americans, and how we can create a more supportive and inclusive environment for them — as well as their caregivers."
Voya introduced Invest in Something Special as the newest component of the company's broader effort to support the special needs community. During the campaign, Special Olympics athletes from across the country were encouraged to share their goals beyond sport on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tumblr. Voya pledged to donate $1 for every like, share or comment on athletes' #InvestInSomethingSpecial stories, up to $500,000. The response to the campaign was overwhelming and resulted in more than 940,000 people participating on social media. In response to the support, Voya amplified the donation to $520,000, which will be shared among the 52 U.S. Special Olympics Programs.
"Voya's donation will advance Special Olympics programming across the country, funding initiatives that foster inclusivity for individuals with intellectual disabilities in schools, workplaces and communities," said Mary Davis, CEO of Special Olympics International. "We thank Voya for its commitment to our mission, and for helping to raise awareness of the future aspirations of our athletes."
Between Nov. 13 and Nov. 19, Special Olympics athletes from across the country engaged in the Invest in Something Special effort on social media to show support for their local Programs, generating over 940,000 comments, likes and shares. The top-performing posts included Garet's about his goal to be the best uncle possible, Brandy's post about striving to make new friends and Michael's anti-bullying message.
"I would like to be a part of an advocacy program, group or performance that advocates against bullying, especially bullying directed toward us with special needs," said Michael. "I'm pretty friendly and usually shake everything off. But students and people can be sometimes insensitive."
About Voya Financial®
Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), helps Americans plan, invest and protect their savings — to get ready to retire better. Serving the financial needs of approximately 13.6 million individual and institutional customers in the United States, Voya is a Fortune 500 company that had $11 billion in revenue in 2016. The company had $541 billion in total assets under management and administration as of Sept. 30, 2017. With a clear mission to make a secure financial future possible — one person, one family, one institution at a time — Voya's vision is to be America's Retirement Company®. Certified as a "Great Place to Work" by the Great Place to Work® Institute, Voya is equally committed to conducting business in a way that is socially, environmentally, economically and ethically responsible and has been recognized as one of the 2017 World's Most Ethical Companies® by the Ethisphere Institute, as well as one of the Top Green Companies in the U.S., by Newsweek magazine. Follow Voya Financial on Facebook and Twitter @Voya.
About Special Olympics:
Special Olympics is a global movement that unleashes the human spirit through the transformative power and joy of sports, every day around the world. We empower people with intellectual disabilities to become included and valued members of their communities, which leads to a more respectful and inclusive society for all. Using sports as the catalyst and programming around health and education, Special Olympics is fighting inactivity, injustice and intolerance. Founded in 1968 by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the Special Olympics movement has grown to more than 5.7 million athletes and Unified partners in 172 countries. With the support of more than 1 million coaches and volunteers, Special Olympics delivers 32 Olympic-type sports and over 108,000 games and competitions throughout the year. Engage with us on: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and our blog on Medium.
SOURCE Voya Financial, Inc.