Bank of America gives grants to 27 nonprofits serving Arizona children in poverty

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Bank of America gives grants to 27 nonprofits serving Arizona children in poverty – Phoenix Business Journal 1/2 A representative for Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Phoenix and Bank of America are with teens accepting grant awards. (Photo by Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Phoenix) From the Phoenix Business Journal:

Bank of America gives grants to 27 nonprofits serving Arizona children in poverty Jun 30, 2018, 12:49pm MST Bank of America again dipped into nonprofit giving this year, offering up $750,000 in grants to 27 local nonprofits, many of which deal with shelter, food and children’s services.

“These grants that we provide are geared toward wrap-around services to help remove these barriers that keep people from achieving economic stability,” said Scott Vanderpool, a local marketing executive for Bank of America.

The announcement of BofA’s nonprofit giving comes the same week the Annie E. Casey Foundation released its 2018 Kids Count report show Arizona ranked 45th in the U.S. when it comes to children’s well-being. The report, which found that 24 percent of the state’s children live in poverty, shows Arizona lacking when it comes to services for children.

That ranking, and similar ones showing Arizona’s education system lacks what is needed for a future workforce, are often drivers for corporate giving.

Vanderpool said the annual BofA grants are part of the bank’s mission to improve financial lives of people living in poverty. This year’s giving was down slightly from last year, when BofA gave $775,000 to 34 local nonprofits.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Phoenix was among the organizations that received money. It is expanding its leadership in training program, or LIT, which helps teens land internships. Bank of America is offering 10 financial center internships.

“Thanks to Bank of America’s investment, we are developing the soft skills these teens need to secure and retain jobs outside the club and giving them real life experience to help ensure their success,” said Josh Stine, the group’s director of grants and government relations, via email.

The Kids Count report highlighted that many children have not benefited from the improving economy and a historically low unemployment rate.

Dana Wolfe Naimark, president and CEO of Children’s Action Alliance, an organization that lobbies on policy issues for children’s health, safety and wellbeing, said many families are still recovering from the 2008 financial crisis. She helped gather data for the report.

Vanderpool said Bank of America’s grants are meant to provide tools and skills for families.

“As we continue to look at these nonprofits, our goal is to help those families that have fallen on hard times. It’s really geared as prevention, but also to help people gain life skills that are essential to people.”

~Abdel Jimenez Editorial Intern Phoenix Business Journal