The Balancing Act

'Ringing' In Some Great Causes...

Article: U.S. Cellular
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The Power Of Community Can Help Schools.

U.S. Cellular's Calling All Communities contest lets ten schools that receive the most community votes share a million dollars with no strings attached. And DonorsChoose.org gives regular folks the chance to be philanthropists by donating cash and supplies to their local schools with just a few clicks of the mouse. Two great ways that schools are getting help at a time when they need it the most.

'Ringing' In Some Great Causes...

U.S. Cellular is making a difference in schools around the country with its "Calling All Communities" campaign. The 10 schools that receive the most votes share equally in a million dollars with no strings attached. Not only does the monetary award benefit the schools and students, the contest helps boost morale, pride and even enrollment in some cases.

In this special segment of the show, viewers will see the surprise announcement and festivities at B.F. Grady Elementary School as they are awarded their top ten prize for the 2010 contest. One hundred U.S. Cellular employees are on hand to celebrate with the Albertson, North Carolina community as B.F. Grady receives $100,000 that can be used for any program or improvements that the school deems appropriate. Albertson, a town that counts less than 2,000 residents, demonstrates the resounding success of U.S. Cellular's goal to "bring people together".

In the 2009 campaign, the champions used their winnings in a variety of ways, including rebuilding a storm-damaged gymnasium, upgrading computer labs, building a new playground and creating a "Believe in Something Better" scholarship program. It is up to the school to decide how to use their award money to the greatest benefit.

According to The Balancing Act guest Charles Best, a former teacher and CEO of DonorsChoose.org, the biggest misconception is that tax dollars are enough to meet the needs of schools. Often times, individuals don't realize that our schools are in trouble until the one in their neighborhood closes. They don't know that the teachers across the country spend an average of $1,200 of their own money each year to provide basic classroom supplies for their students.

Most importantly, individuals don't realize that they have the power to help.
At U.S. Cellular, the company believes in being more than just a phone company. They made a commitment to invest more than $5 million in 2009 and 2010 in public and private schools through grassroots initiatives that harness the power of their 9,000 associates and the community. With Calling All Communities, the associates take the lead in spreading the word, activating communities and encouraging schools to rally votes. In 2010, 430,000 votes were cast in support of more than 6,800 schools!

Tune in to see this heartwarming story of community action and the children that it is impacting. For more information, visit www.uscellular.com.

Newsletter article: 'Ringing' In Some Great Causes...



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