Thursday, January 26, 2006

Reno Hilton Contributes Over $500,000

RENO, Nev. - The Reno Hilton contributed $509,183 in monetary, in-kind service, and products last year to several dozen non-profit organizations.

These include: The A.V.A. Ballet Theater, American Heart Association, Artown, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Care Chest of Sierra, Cinco de Mayo, Community Foundation of Western Nevada, Desert Research Institute, Food Bank of Northern Nevada, High Desert Interscholastic, Hispanic Chamber, Junior Achievement, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Nevada Women's Fund, Reno Film Festival, Reno Tahoe Open, Reno/Tahoe Wine and Food Festival, Street Vibrations, Tour de Nez, Truckee Meadows Community College, Truckee Meadows Tomorrow, United Way, and the University of Nevada, Reno.

Reno Hilton staff members also serve on a variety of boards and committees for such organizations as 4-H, Air Task Force, Angel Kiss Foundation, Care Chest of the Sierras, Education Foundation, Inc., Friends of Special Children, High Sierra Industries, International Association of Administrative Professionals, Nevada Aids Foundation, Professional Convention Management Association, Senior Companions, Tahoe Rim Trail, and the Truckee Meadows Growth Task Force.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

KVBC To Sponsor PEEK Week

HENDERSON, Nev. - NBC affiliate KVBC Channel 3 will be Nevada Child Seekers' television sponsor during the nonprofit association's PEEK Week, April 8-15. PEEK is an acronym for Protecting and Educating Everyone's Kids week and corresponds with the National Child Abuse Prevention Month in April.

In addition to several public awareness programs, Nevada Child Seekers will host a family fair on at Acacia Park in Henderson on April 8. The fair includes an Easter egg hunt, games, prizes, food, and entertainment. Another event, the Easter Run 2006, will be held the following week on April 15. The 5K and 1 Mile Run/Walk will begin at 7:30 a.m. at Paseo Verde Park in Henderson.

For more information of either event, call Nevada Child Seekers 458-7009 or visit nevadachildseekers.org. KVBC sponsors several community events in southern Nevada.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Bank Of America Awards $1.1 Million



LAS VEGAS – The Bank of America Foundation announced it provided more than $1.1 million in financial support to more than 80 agencies in Nevada during 2005.

“Our long-term success depends on the health and vitality of the communities we serve,” said George W. Smith, President – Bank of America Nevada. "The community nonprofit agencies supported through foundation grants help our children succeed in life, neighborhoods flourish and communities prosper. I’m extremely proud to work for a company like Bank of America, where caring for and being involved in the community are priorities.”

The Bank of America Foundation focuses resources on helping children and families succeed in life and neighborhoods flourish. The Foundation operates with one of the largest philanthropic budgets of any financial institution in the United States and in 2005, contributed more than $129 million in cash to nonprofit organizations across the country.

Monday, January 23, 2006

AAA of Nevada Shares Volunteer Strategies

Inside Corporate Philanthropy examined the community and business impacts of the volunteer recognition programs at Deloitte, Gap Inc., and AAA of Northern California, Nevada, and Utah in a two part series that outlines specific strategies a business program can implement to meet its goals.

The article details how recognizing employee volunteers can enhance a company’s ability to positively impact the community. For example, AAA of Northern California, Nevada, and Utah offers volunteers three days of paid time off for company-supported volunteerism, as well as an annual AAA Volunteer Celebration showcasing employee volunteers’ achievements.

Roger Hancock, Manager of Community Affairs, reports that the company “is motivated to offer these recognition programs to inspire our volunteers to volunteer again. And, for those employees who have not ever volunteered at AAA, we hope the attention our volunteers receive will inspire an employee to volunteer for the first time. And it works.”

Through AAA Volunteers, we are building leaders. AAA employees are learning new skills, expanding existing skills, and sharing their talents with others. They are becoming better leaders and better managers of people. They are meeting new people and building contacts inside and outside the company. Our employees are growing personally and professionally as a result of their volunteer efforts.”

While he says it’s difficult to measure directly the impact of volunteerism on skill building, he offers “We have seen employees who have received promotions or new jobs as a result of them being involved as a volunteer. Volunteers become visible among managers and other staff in a position of hiring.

Hancock has also observed the program’s team-building potential. The company’s employees are involved in services ranging from auto services to travel to insurance, and he finds that volunteerism “gets them all together, pulling together for AAA.”

This year, the company will build upon these team- and leadership-building capacities through its recognition program. The employees who lead groups of their fellow AAA volunteers will be considered “Team Leaders” and receive shirts and thank you notes, copied to their managers, acknowledging them.

For the full article, www.onphilanthropy.com/bestpract/bp2005-12-02.html

Thursday, January 19, 2006

TriWest Sponsors Sinise USO Visit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Actor, director and producer Gary Sinise will visit airmen at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., Jan. 28 on his 13th USO tour. The trip, sponsored by TriWest Healthcare Alliance, will feature Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band performing a free show for service members and their families. Best known for his Oscar-nominated performance as Lt. Dan in "Forrest Gump," Sinise is a strong supporter of the military. Currently, he is starring in the hit series "CSI: New York" on CBS.

Sinise was among the group of celebrities on the USO's first tour to Baghdad in June 2003. He also has visited troops in Diego Garcia, Singapore, Korea, Iraq, Kuwait, Qatar, Germany, the Netherlands, England and Italy. Sinise also has spent time with troops who are recuperating at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and the National Naval Medical Center. Over the past year, Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band have entertained military personnel stationed at several military posts across the United States.

TriWest Healthcare Alliance is a Phoenix-based corporation that partners with the Department of Defense to provide access to cost-effective, high- quality health care for 2.7 million members of America's military family in the 21-state TRICARE West Region, which is comprised of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming and western Texas. For more information, visit http://www.triwest.com/.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Business Bank Breaks Giving Records

LAS VEGAS - Business Bank of Nevada announced 2005 was its third consecutive record year for philanthropic outreach in Nevada. The Bank's monetary and in-kind support last year totaled over $35,000 in cash and in-kind donations, including computer and other office equipment, and more than 1,200 hours of volunteer services from Bank employees.

This is a 17 percent increase over the previous year's numbers, which amounted to $30,000 for cash and in-kind donations, and approximately 1,000 hours of volunteer services.

"We continue to be very proud of our philanthropic performance and our increased capabilities each year to help more people and communities become better places to live and work," said Larry Charlton, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Business Bank and chairman of the board of United Way of Southern Nevada. "We view our involvement in the communities we serve as an extension of our bank, and if the community succeeds, we too will be successful."

Charlton added that while the Bank is very pleased with what it achieved last year with its monetary and in-kind donations, the Bank is perhaps most excited about the human resources it was able to provide to nonprofit and community organizations throughout Nevada. "Providing over 1,200 hours of volunteer services to these organizations was no small feat, especially for a company our size."

The Bank contributes financial, in-kind, and volunteer assistance to nonprofit institutions and organizations that enhance the quality of life and promote public interest where the company conducts its business. The four main areas of the Bank's philanthropic outreach include: education, health and human services, community development, and arts and culture. Business Bank is a member of the Business Community Investment Council in Las Vegas.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Americans Celebrate King Holiday

WASHINGTON, D.C. – For hundreds of thousands of Americans across the country, January 16 is a day "on" for service -- not just a day off from work -- as they honor Martin Luther King Jr. by engaging in service activities for their communities and neighbors. Citizens in every state will join together to tutor children, build homes, clean parks, paint classrooms, deliver meals, and perform countless other acts of service.

Participation in the day of service has grown steadily since 1994 when Congress passed legislation encouraging Americans to celebrate the King Holiday as a day of service reflecting Dr. King’s life and teachings.

"We encourage all Americans to make the King Holiday a day on, not a day off," said David Eisner, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. "Dr. King once said, 'Everybody can be great, because everybody can serve.' The King Holiday affords the ideal opportunity to remember the legacy of a great American by being one yourself."

Eisner will join HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt and 500 volunteers at a Washington D.C. high school in a project that is providing services to more than 170 homeless families. These services, called "Bus Stops" in memory of Rosa Parks, include continuing education, professional development, financial independence, and health. Additionally, volunteers will assemble care packets, paint murals, sort donations, and plan activities for children and youth.

Other Corporation staff who will be serving on King Day include Chief Operating Officer Liz Seale, who will be in Philadelphia building a home that will be delivered to a hurricane-affected family in the Gulf; AmeriCorps*VISTA director Jean Whaley, who will be in Charleston, SC, with the Sea Island Habitat for Humanity, and Senior Corps director Tess Scannell, who will serve with an RSVP program in Washington, D.C., distributing clothing to local homeless shelters.

Last November, the Corporation awarded $500,000 in grants to support six national and state-wide organizations, which in turn are supporting King Day service projects across the country. A full list of these grants can be found at www.mlkday.org, along with an online listing of more than 560 projects taking place across the United States. The Corporation has also encouraged all of its Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America programs to undertake service projects in their local area.

Among the hundreds of King Day service projects scheduled over the holiday weekend:

Philadelphia, which hosts the largest King Day of Service event in the country, expects a record 50,000 volunteers to participate this year. Martin Luther King High School in the Germantown section of Philadelphia will host the largest of more than 600 service projects organized throughout the tri-state region. Mayor Street, other elected and school district officials, Corporation COO Liz Seale, community leaders, students and others will build a "House in a Box" through Habitat for Humanity and a playground playhouse through the YouthBuild AmeriCorps program.

Hands on Atlanta and the King Center are sponsoring the 13th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Service Summit, with 3,500 volunteers expected to take part. The projects include refurbishing used and donated computers for use in schools and agencies, cleaning and painting the Adams Park Community Center, and visiting senior residents at AG Rhodes Wesley Woods. Hands on Atlanta’s subgrant is through the Hands on Network.

St. James A.M.E. Church in Memphis, TN, is sponsoring activities focusing on youth and crime prevention. One project is "Pen or Pencil: Freedom of Choice," an initiative of the National Alliance of Faith and Justice. "Pen" stands for penitentiary, while "Pencil" refers to education; the initiative is geared to helping young people make the choice for education over a life of crime. Representatives of Nile, a group focusing on mentoring parents of delinquent children, and the U.S. Dream Academy, which works with youth, will be there to recruit volunteer mentors for their programs.

The City of Casa Grande, AZ, is co-sponsoring an educational event focusing on King’s teachings. Other sponsors are the County Juvenile Probation Dept., the Interfaith Council, and the Casa Grande School District. The event will also include a service project at the city’s recreation center. The project is supported by the Arizona Governor’s Commission on Service and Volunteerism, which received a grant from the Corporation.

The Youth Conservation Corps based in Waukegan, IL, is signing up volunteers to participate in three service projects: sorting food for distribution at the Northern Illinois Food Bank; painting and cleaning at PADS, a homeless shelter; and general maintenance and repairs at Staben House, a women’s shelter. Between 40 and 60 volunteers are expected to attend the event, which received a subgrant from the National Association of Service Conservation Corps.

The third year of King Day events sponsored by Louisville Service for Peace in Louisville, KY, is expected to draw 2,000 volunteers to more than 30 projects; two years ago, 100 volunteers participated. Employees of Wal-Mart, Target, and Home Depot, among others, will undertake painting and cleaning projects at the Shawnee and Sun Valley Community Centers and the Russell Senior Center. The Interfaith Youth Corps, a group of about 70 high school and college students, will participate in a dialogue examining King’s life from different faith perspectives. The Louisville group received a subgrant from the national Service for Peace organization.

The Urban League of Greater Madison, in Wisconsin, will host the 8th Annual Achieving Greatness Through Service Youth Service Day. The 400 middle and high school students expected to attend will be asked to pledge at least 100 service hours in 2006. The President's Volunteer Service Award will be presented by U.S. Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin to students who completed 100 or more hours of service in 2005. Afternoon service projects will include food drives, reading to children, and collecting and distributing books. The Points of Life Foundation awarded a subgrant to the Urban League of Great Madison to support these activities.

The Corporation for National and Community Service provides opportunities for Americans of all ages and backgrounds to serve their communities and country through three main programs: Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America. For more information, visit www.nationalservice.gov.

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