Los Angeles, CA — The Urban Media Foundation (UMF) today received a grant from Verizon to support its after-school education program offering youth workshops on literacy, critical thinking and technology training.

“Our partnership with Verizon has enabled us to deliver a quality program to our youth,” said Natalie Cole, CEO and founder of Urban Media Foundation. “At a time when the economy is in a significant downturn and philanthropy dollars have dwindled, we are pleased that Verizon embraced the vision of the UMF and supported this program.”

UMF offers youth a way to channel their expression and focus their energies through journalism and media technology. It also offers students a place to network and provides summer job opportunities and internships with local media.

“Verizon is proud to support an organization that provides an outlet for youth to positively express themselves, enhance their literacy skills and explore potential careers in mass communications,” said Elva Lima, vice president, Verizon strategic programs. “Verizon is fully committed to supporting organizations like the Urban Media Foundation that are making positive changes in their communities.”

The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, supports the advancement of literacy and K-12 education through its free educational website, Thinkfinity.org, and fosters awareness and prevention of domestic violence. In 2008, the Verizon Foundation awarded more than $68 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in the U.S. and abroad. It also matched the charitable donations of Verizon employees and retirees, resulting in an additional $26 million in combined contributions to nonprofits. Through Verizon Volunteers, one of the nation’s largest employee volunteer programs, Verizon employees and retirees have volunteered more than 3 million hours of community service since 2000. For more information on the Verizon foundation, visit www.verizonfoundation.org.

For more information on UMF, call (323) 905-1302 or visit www.urbanmediafoundation.org.