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Walmart grants to help African Americans pursue higher education

2/28/2014, 6:53 a.m.

On February 25, 2014, Walmart furthered its commitment to provide greater access to opportunities across 20 United States communities with $1.75 million in grants from the Walmart Foundation to three of the nation’s leading nonprofit organizations: National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP); National Urban League (NUL); and United Negro College Fund (UNCF).

The grant to UNCF will fund a program to help assure historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) continue as a source of quality degrees for African American students. In addition, the grants to NUL and NAACP will fund programs to help individuals receive the support they need to secure and build meaningful careers through training and placement assistance, and help businesses create more job opportunities.

There is an increase in demand today for diverse talent in the workforce, according to the inaugural Diversity Jobs Index and Report from the Professional Diversity Network, Inc. To meet this demand, Walmart continues to help African Americans access career opportunities through work with strategic partners and by fostering diversity and inclusion among its associates and suppliers.

“With today’s economic climate there is a growing need to empower individuals in communities nationwide with access to opportunities that will help them live better. Part of this work will come from helping businesses understand and unlock the powerful results that a more diverse workforce has to offer,” said Tony Waller, senior director, corporate affairs, Walmart. “By helping one individual at a time build a successful career, we are growing a more competitive work environment. A competitive environment ignites innovation, which helps build stronger communities and, ultimately, a stronger America.”

“Since 2006, we have been able to increasingly grow our workforce training program through ongoing support from the Walmart Foundation and subsequently have exceeded expectations of the number of individuals we’ve been able to serve,” said Marc H. Morial, president and chief executive officer of the National Urban League. “This new grant will help us further strengthen our workforce development programs, and continue helping African Americans and other communities of color across the United States secure economic independence and empowerment.”

The Walmart Foundation grant of $500,000 to UNCF will help 16 historically black colleges and universities achieve long-term financial stability so they can continue providing African American students with access to higher education. In addition, a $1 million grant to NUL and a $250,000 grant to NAACP will fund programs to provide career counseling and job placement support, and help businesses evaluate current hiring policies.

For more information about the Walmart Foundation, visit: www.foundation.walmart.com.