The Norfolk Southern Foundation, the charitable giving affiliate of Norfolk Southern Corporation, announced today that it awarded nearly $6.2 million in grants during 2011 to nonprofit, charitable organizations, an 11 percent increase over 2010.
“At Norfolk Southern we believe that service includes serving the communities where we operate our trains and where our employees live and work in addition to providing safe transportation for our customers’ freight,” said NS CEO Wick Moorman, who is also chairman of the United Way of South Hampton Roads 2011-2012 fund-raising campaign. “Through the Norfolk Southern Foundation, we are focused on helping to build and nurture communities in our 22-state rail network through our charitable giving programs.”
The Foundation contributes to organizations supporting its four priorities: providing food and shelter to those in need; expanding educational opportunities for children; helping conserve the environment; and promoting the arts and culture.
NS Foundation giving in 2011 included:
- $2.03 million to 80 United Way campaigns and other health and human services groups, a 5 percent increase over 2010. More than $400,000 of that went to groups such as the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia, which helped distribute food and clothing to more than 110,000 people last year; ForKids Inc., which helps homeless families with children become self-supporting; and Children‘s Hospital of the King‘s Daughters, which is dedicated to children‘s health and well-being.
- $1.08 million to cultural and performing arts groups, such as Virginia Arts Festival, Virginia Opera, Virginia Symphony, Virginia Stage Company, public TV and radio, museums, zoos, and cultural centers, including the Chrysler Museum, Virginia Museum of Transportation, and Woodruff Arts Center.
- $998,995 for educational organizations. Benefiting from the 27 percent funding increase in this category were the ACCESS Scholarship Foundation, which provides scholarships to enable high school graduates in Norfolk to attend college, and 14 universities that received $300,000 in grants under the Norfolk Southern College Partnership Program. This program, established in 2006, builds relationships to enhance the railroad’s recruiting opportunities, particularly for business and engineering graduates.
- $382,850 to civic, community, and environmental groups, 5 percent higher than 2010. As part of this funding, $142,000 went to police, fire, and emergency response organizations, school programs, and historical and community groups through NS’ local discretion grant program. This program gives each operating division the opportunity to have a direct impact on the communities where employees work and live. As part of its environmental support, the Foundation provided grants to the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and Elizabeth River Project to clean up waterways and protect coastal habitats from over-development, and first-time funding to the Longleaf Alliance to support research to restore Longleaf pine forest ecosystems in the South.
- $1.7 million in employee matching gifts in support of 547 organizations ��� up 21 percent over 2010. Grants other than matching gifts went to 350 organizations.
Norfolk Southern takes seriously its role as a corporate citizen and its responsibility to commit resources, both human and financial, to the improvement of those communities for the benefit of its employees and its neighbors. Since its creation in 1983, the Foundation has contributed nearly $124 million to thousands of civic and charitable organizations throughout Norfolk Southern’s territory. In the last five years, it has provided more than $27.5 million in contributions.
NS Foundation funding increases to $7 million for 2012
In response to a sharp rise in grant requests and cutbacks in public funding, Norfolk Southern has increased the Foundation’s budget for 2012 by 13 percent to $7 million. In coming years, the Foundation aims to provide additional funding for health and human services organizations, groups working to preserve the environment in areas where the railroad operates, and to the local discretion grant program.
The Norfolk Southern Foundation will accept grants for 2013 funding July 15-Sept. 30, 2012. For information about the Foundation, and eligibility and application procedures, visit Norfolk Southern Foundation.
Norfolk Southern Corporation is one of the nation’s premier transportation companies. Its Norfolk Southern Railway subsidiary operates approximately 20,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia, serves every major container port in the eastern United States, and provides efficient connections to other rail carriers. Norfolk Southern operates the most extensive intermodal network in the East and is a major transporter of coal and industrial products.