Microsoft Awards $7.1 Million in Software to Nonprofit Organizations

REDMOND, Wash., Aug. 3, 1999 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the donation of more than $7.1 million in software to 10 national nonprofit organizations. Awarded annually, Nonprofit Technology Leadership Grants provide large-scale contributions of software to nonprofit organizations that have offices in at least three states. The grant program is a central component of Microsoft’s mission to equip nonprofit organizations with technology solutions, enabling them to achieve increased operational efficiency, enhanced internal and external communications, and better program and service delivery.

This year’s recipients include such well-known organizations as the American Red Cross, American Lung Association, Habitat for Humanity International and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Lesser-known grantees include ACCION International, an organization dedicated to reducing poverty by providing
and business advisory services to people with low incomes who start their own small businesses, and Mercy Housing, a Denver-based affordable housing development and management organization serving low-income individuals and families.

“Our Technology Leadership Grant program is designed to help nonprofit organizations use current information technology to reach new heights in operations and service delivery,”
said Kimberly Ellwanger, senior director of corporate affairs, Microsoft.
“The sophistication and innovative thinking these grant winners used in defining their ‘wish list’ for technology was so impressive; helping them deliver on those goals is a huge success for Microsoft.”

Grants range from $248,000 to more than $2 million (based on the software’s estimated retail value) and will provide technology upgrades and enhancements these organizations need to better meet their objectives.

“Without tools to help us communicate effectively, conservation simply cannot work,”
said World Wildlife Fund President Kathryn Fuller.
“This grant will be an important resource as World Wildlife Fund becomes one of the first organizations to undertake conservation on a broad geographic scale, collaborating with partners across state and country lines. Thanks to Microsoft, dollars earmarked for technology can be redirected to support our important conservation work in the field.”

The Nonprofit Technology Leadership Grant program began in 1997 with three recipients. These and other past recipients have built on the donation from Microsoft and now boast a range of effective technology solutions.

This year’s grant recipients include the following organizations:

  • ACCION International, Somerville, Mass. ACCION International’s mission is to help break the cycle of poverty by providing microloans and business training to poor men and women who start their own small businesses. Operating in the United States and Latin America, ACCION has made $2.2 billion in loans as small as $100 to over 1.6 million people. Remarkably, 98 percent of the loans have been paid back. ACCION will use its gift of $248,000 to provide a standard technology platform across the organization, enabling it to reach significantly more people in need.

  • American Lung Association, New York, N.Y. Since 1904, the American Lung Association has been fighting lung disease through education, community service, advocacy and research. The grant of $751,000 will support the standardization of 53 strategic offices, with a goal of better communication and organizational effectiveness.

  • American Red Cross, Washington, D.C. The American Red Cross trains nearly 12 million people each year to prevent, prepare for and respond to more than 60,000 disasters and emergencies. As part of the organization’s commitment to improving its technology capabilities nationwide, this grant of $497,000 will be used to help more than 100 chapters build their technology infrastructures.

  • City Year, Boston, Mass. City Year, a member of the AmeriCorps network, is a national service program that unites diverse 17- to 24-year-olds for a challenging year of full-time service, leadership development and civic engagement. A model private/public partnership, City Year addresses critical needs in literacy, education, HIV/AIDS awareness, domestic violence prevention and youth development. The Microsoft grant, valued at $500,000, will be used to provide a standard technology platform and Internet access and to establish a wide area network to enable City Year to share information and collaborate more effectively across a multisite national organization.

  • Habitat for Humanity International, Americus, Ga.

    Habitat for Humanity brings families and communities in need together with volunteers and resources to build decent, affordable housing. A grant of $501,000 will support a technology upgrade at the international headquarters in Americus and at 16 regional offices across the country.

  • Mercy Housing, Denver Mercy Housing is an affordable housing development and management organization serving economically poor individuals and families. The Microsoft grant of $500,000 will provide a standard technology platform across the organization as well as at 20 computer learning centers located in housing projects.

  • National Multiple Sclerosis Society, New York, N.Y. The mission of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society is to end the devastating effects of multiple sclerosis. The mission is fulfilled through five major areas: research, programs for people with MS and their families, public awareness, clinical and professional programs, and advocacy. A grant of $2,001,000, the largest single corporate grant ever made to the Society, will support standardized technology throughout its 50-state network of chapters.

  • The Salvation Army – Cascade Division, Portland, Ore. The Salvation Army provides social services to hundreds of thousands of people each day, including holiday assistance, homeless shelters, transitional programs, disaster relief, youth centers, day care centers, and direct assistance to the working poor. The Cascade Division will use this grant of $1.25 million to streamline its administrative offices and support computer centers for at-risk youth in Portland and Boise, Idaho.

  • Trust for Public Land, San Francisco The Trust for Public Land is the only national nonprofit specifically founded to protect land for public use and enjoyment. Since 1972, TPL has helped communities acquire more than 1 million acres nationwide for parks, community gardens, playgrounds, greenways and recreation areas. This grant of $432,000 will help the agency standardize computer systems across the agency to improve communication, productivity and Internet tools.

  • World Wildlife Fund Inc., Washington, D.C. Known worldwide by its panda logo, WWF is the largest privately supported international conservation organization in the world, responsible for more than 2,000 conservation projects in 116 countries. WWF will use its $489,000 software gift to facilitate greater communication and information sharing among its global network of agencies and partners.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

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