The YMCA of Philadelphia & Vicinity's Y Achievers Program today was presented with the largest financial contribution in its history - an $800,000 gift from Comcast.
With Comcast's gift, the number of students served by the Y Achievers Program is projected to more than double to 500 next year. In addition, the funding will help further develop the program's infrastructure, enable the YMCA to recruit additional Teen Achievers and Adult Mentors and enhance its offerings, including college tours, parental support programs, college readiness training, SAT preparation and tutoring. Furthermore, the gift will allow the YMCA of Philadelphia & Vicinity to dedicate additional staff, including a college counselor, to the program.
"The YMCA is grateful for this tremendous commitment from Comcast," said John Flynn, CEO of the YMCA of Philadelphia & Vicinity. "Both the Y and Comcast are dedicated to building strong communities and this gift is an example of how corporations can help improve the lives of young people in the communities that we serve. With Comcast's support, the Y Achievers Program will be able to serve more students with broader services, creating a win-win situation for all."
"Comcast is thrilled to provide this gift to the YMCA of Philadelphia & Vicinity, as it will enable the Y Achievers program to grow dramatically and serve more students," said Comcast Executive Vice President David L. Cohen. "Moreover, Y Achievers is a model program that helps youth learn about careers and build relationships, and we are very proud to help provide our area's young people with opportunities for success."
The YMCA's Y Achievers Program is an extracurricular educational and team mentoring program that focuses on 7th - 12th grade minority youth and engages them in leadership training, career exploration and character development. Participants meet at Drexel University twice a month and take part in workshops dedicated to specific areas of professional interest. With the guidance of mentors, who are experts in their fields, students complete projects that are designed to provide them with an opportunity to explore their career interest through a real-life application of skills.
Although the program serves the greater Philadelphia area, including Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties, the vast majority of the participating students are from Philadelphia.
Payne Brown, Comcast's Vice President of Strategic Initiatives and a member of the YMCA of Philadelphia & Vicinity's Board of Directors, presented the gift during the Y Achievers Business & Industry Awards Luncheon Program, which honored teen achievers, adult mentors and corporate sponsors. Larry Smith, retired Comcast Co-Chief Financial Officer, has served on the YMCA of Philadelphia & Vicinity's Board of Directors since 1990 and currently serves as Chair of the Board.
"Y Achievers truly highlights the importance of communities and corporations working together to improve the lives of young people and it's rewarding to be a part of its success," said Brown.
The financial contribution is part of the Pennsylvania Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program (EITC), which encourages businesses to support education in the state through donations to EITC-registered programs. According to the REACH Foundation, more than 2,300 companies have participated in the state's EITC program since its inception in 2001.
About YMCA of Philadelphia & Vicinity
The YMCA of Philadelphia & Vicinity serves more than 52,000 members and 140,000 individuals a year through ten branch locations and 55 program sites in Philadelphia, Montgomery and Delaware counties. In each community it serves, the YMCA is a vital home-away-from home for its members, a link to positive values and a place that strengthens minds, bodies and spirits through programs including: child care and Head Start, summer camp, youth sports, aquatics, YMCA Achievers, water aquasize, adult literacy and more. Throughout the Y, an emphasis is placed on building character through the values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. For more information, call 215-963-3700 or visit www.philaymca.org.
About Comcast Corporation
Comcast Corporation (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) (http://www.comcast.com) is the nation's leading provider of cable, entertainment and communications products and services. With 24.1 million cable customers, 12.4 million high-speed Internet customers, and 3.5 million voice customers, Comcast is principally involved in the development, management and operation of broadband cable systems and in the delivery of programming content.
Comcast's content networks and investments include E! Entertainment Television, Style Network, The Golf Channel, VERSUS, G4, AZN Television, PBS KIDS Sprout, TV One, Comcast SportsNet and Comcast Interactive Media, which develops and operates Comcast's Internet business. Comcast also has a majority ownership in Comcast-Spectacor, whose major holdings include the Philadelphia Flyers NHL hockey team, the Philadelphia 76ers NBA basketball team and two large multipurpose arenas in Philadelphia.