Nonprofit Organizations Can Apply for $325,000 in Grants

Thanks to the generosity of Verizon customers who participated in the company's Check Into Literacy program, nonprofit literacy organizations in New Jersey are now eligible to receive a total of $325,000 in grants.

The Check Into Literacy initiative allows Verizon landline phone customers to make a convenient $1-a-month, tax-deductible donation to support literacy programs when customers pay their Verizon bill. Grant awards will range from $1,000 to $25,000. Since the program began in New Jersey in 2000, nearly $1 million has been collected for the Check Into Literacy program.

Eligible nonprofit organizations in the state can submit proposals via e-mail. More information about the grants, including application instructions and forms, can be found at

To qualify for funding, applicants must be a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization providing basic reading skills and computer and Web-based literacy programs to New Jersey residents in underserved communities in Verizon's landline service territory. Grant proposals must be submitted by midnight July 31, 2008. Verizon plans to announce grant recipients on or around Sept. 30.

"A dollar a month may not seem like much, but it can go a long way to improving literacy skills in local communities and giving people the opportunity to succeed" said Dennis Bone, president of Verizon New Jersey. "Literacy is the foundation of a successful future, and Verizon is proud to partner with our customers to assist literacy organizations throughout New Jersey"

This year, nonprofit organizations in 26 states and Washington, D.C., will receive more than $1.15 million to bolster literacy efforts. The participating states are: Arizona, California, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, North Carolina, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.