PITTSBURGH, April 4, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The PNC Financial Services Group (NYSE: PNC) today launches its 15th anniversary celebration of PNC Grow Up Great®, announcing an additional $150 million to extend the program that supports high-quality early learning for young children. The program is now a $500 million initiative benefitting 40 markets.
"The workplace of tomorrow will require skills and knowledge we can't begin to imagine today. As a Main Street bank, we recognize that we have an important role to play in helping ensure that all children have the opportunity to acquire and strengthen the skills they need to succeed so that our communities prosper," said William S. Demchak, chairman, president and chief executive officer of The PNC Financial Services Group. "I join with my PNC colleagues in sharing the pride in all that has been accomplished through PNC Grow Up Great. In this celebration year, the time is right to extend our support and prepare our future leaders for success."
"Fifteen years in and we know the best is yet to come thanks to the support of our employees, along with the terrific collaborations we've embarked on with Fred Rogers Productions, Sesame Workshop and National Head Start Association," said Sally McCrady, president and chair of the PNC Foundation. "We look forward to making an even greater impact by helping more families, teachers and others inspire the love of learning in our youngest children."
In addition to the increased funding, details of the year-long celebration include:
- Launching the "Great Big Book Drive." For the first time, PNC invites customers and other community members to join us in donating books and playing a role in helping children succeed. Books can be dropped off at PNC branches now through April 30. The books will be distributed to early learning organizations across PNC communities.
- Extending the alliance with DonorsChoose.org. PNC is extending its alliance with DonorsChoose.org, an online charity that connects individual donors with classrooms in need, by awarding another $5 million grant from the PNC Foundation to help preschool teachers obtain high-quality resources and learning experiences for their students. From now through May 31, the PNC Foundation will match, dollar-for-dollar, donations that support pre-K and Head Start teachers' project requests in the PNC footprint listed on DonorsChoose.org, subject to restrictions and a maximum dollar amount. For specific guidelines on the match component, visit DonorsChoose.org. In addition, approximately 52,000 PNC employees will receive a $25 gift card funded by the PNC Foundation, which allows them to award the funds to a DonorsChoose.org project of their choice. To date, the PNC/DonorsChoose.org alliance has benefitted more than 630,000 pre-K and Head Start students.
- Awarding $6 million in focused grants. Each PNC regional market will receive up to $150,000 in incremental grants from the PNC Foundation. These grants are designed to support the specific needs of learners from birth to 3-years-old; community-based educational experiences for families with young children; or professional learning and skill-development for current or future early childhood educators.
- Doubling Grants for Great Hours. PNC provides employees with 40 hours of paid time off each year for Grow Up Great volunteerism. Employees could previously earn grant credits up to $3,000 each year to be awarded to a partner early learning organization. For this year, PNC is doubling that amount up to $6,000. To date, employees' volunteerism has resulted in $6.6 million in grants.
"PNC and Fred Rogers Productions share the vision that kids come first, now and always," said Paul Siefken, president and CEO of Fred Rogers Productions. "We're proud of our longtime collaboration, and together we're creating a roadmap that ensures children have the tools they need to thrive from the very beginning. Congratulations to our Pittsburgh neighbors on 15 extraordinary years of Grow Up Great."
Since 2004, Grow Up Great has focused on helping to prepare children, especially underserved children, from birth to age 5, for success in school and life. The initiative goes beyond the classroom, supporting learning and social-emotional development of children at home and across communities by also providing free resources and tools to parents, guardians, caregivers and neighborhood organizations.
Access to high-quality early childhood education and resources is critical. Research shows that quality early education reduces dropout rates, poverty and crime while improving the skills of tomorrow's workforce.
Highlights of PNC Grow Up Great's impact over the last 15 years include:
- Awarded nearly $160 million in grants through the PNC Foundation to support young children in the communities we serve.
- Encouraged families, caregivers and teachers to inspire a love of learning through educational resources and experiences for more than five million children.
- Demonstrated leadership by leveraging our relationships with the business community, policymakers and other key stakeholders to elevate discussions about the importance of access to high-quality early childhood education.
- Donated employee time, skills and expertise in support of the mission. Through Grow Up Great, PNC employees have contributed more than 850,000 volunteer hours and 1.2 million items for use in classrooms and the personal well-being of young children.
Throughout the year, PNC will continue the anniversary celebration with additional initiatives and events continuing to support the efforts of early childhood education champions – the teachers, experts, caregivers and parents committed to building a foundation for success.
The PNC Foundation, which receives its principal funding from The PNC Financial Services Group (www.pnc.com), actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture. Through Grow Up Great, its signature cause that began in 2004, PNC has created a bilingual $500 million, multi-year initiative to help prepare children from birth to age 5 for success in school and life.
The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. is one of the largest diversified financial services institutions in the United States, organized around its customers and communities for strong relationships and local delivery of retail and business banking including a full range of lending products; specialized services for corporations and government entities, including corporate banking, real estate finance and asset-based lending; wealth management and asset management. For information about PNC, visit www.pnc.com.
SOURCE PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.