LOUISVILLE, Ky. (July 7, 2010) — Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. (TMMK) today awarded $123,000 in grants to six Louisville non-profit organizations, with the money aimed at improving the lives of children and youth.
The recipients are: Americana Community Center ($10,000); Governor’s School for the Arts
($38,000); Louisville Metro Parks Foundation ($5,000); Louisville Urban League ($20,000); Project One ($20,000); and the Louisville Zoo ($30,000).
"It's extremely important to support these agencies, which are focused on educating and improving the lives of children and young adults,” said Wil James, newly appointed president of TMMK. “These donations are in essence an investment in our future and represent Toyota's practice of giving back to the communities where we do business and where our team members live."
Toyota is one of Kentucky’s largest employers with 6,600 team members at its Georgetown plant. Including members at its North American manufacturing headquarters operation in Erlanger, Toyota’s direct employment in Kentucky totals more than 8,200, approximately 500 of whom commute to Georgetown and Erlanger from the Louisville Metro area.
Since 1987, TMMK has given more than $38 million to a variety of organizations across Kentucky.
“Toyota in Kentucky has been the largest corporate benefactor of the Governor’s School for the Arts for many years,” said Heather Weston Bell, executive director of Governor’s School for the Arts. “With Toyota’s support, we’ve given more than 4,000 talented Kentucky students over the last 19 years the hands-on opportunity to participate in a three-week intensive exploration of one of nine artistic disciplines.”
“Even in our difficult economy, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky has continued to invest in the children and youth of Louisville,” said Mayor Jerry Abramson. “The grants announced today will make a crucial difference in the lives of young people in this community and throughout the Commonwealth.”
Today’s announcement came at the Louisville Zoo, where nearly three dozen children and youth from the receiving organizations took a walking tour of the facility following the news conference.
The grants distributed by Toyota this morning will be used by the organizations for the following programs:
Americana Community Center – Toyota monies will help fund the after-school and summer programs of the Center, which include a variety of classes and activities for Louisville’s diverse population of youngsters. Programs focus on such areas as photography, arts, tutoring and homework help.
Governor’s School for the Arts – Each year, grant funds from Toyota help enable this program to cover room, board, instruction and field-trip fees for 225 rising high school juniors and seniors for a three-week summer program on the campus of Transylvania University. During the program, students learn in a supportive community of distinguished master-teachers and have the chance to audition for scholarships before the nation’s top colleges and universities. Each student specializes in one discipline, but is exposed to the other eight disciplines as well.
Louisville Metro Parks Foundation – Toyota funds support Louisville Is Engaging Children Outdoors (ECHO), which helps fourth graders at Cane Run, Portland and Young elementary schools develop a closer relationship with their environment. The inquiry-based program is tied to the school curriculum and designed to boost the health and academic achievement of students, many of whom have had limited experience in forest, meadow or river and stream environments.
Louisville Urban League – The Toyota grant supports the NULITES (National Urban League Incentives to Excel and Succeed) youth initiative, which includes programs that strive to instill core values in school-aged youth and provide them with the pathway to becoming successful academically, personally, and socially.
Louisville Zoo – The Toyota Backyard Action Hero Program guidebook helps kids learn about wildlife and their habitats and helps prepare kids to take action to help protect them, both in their own backyard and in other parts of the world. The guidebook is filled with fun facts and activities kids can do with family and friends. The 2009-2010 focus is on protecting the Tundra.
Project One – Project One, which trains and prepares disadvantaged youth for post-secondary education, meaningful employment opportunities and career ladder placements, will use the Toyota funds to give youth ages 13-18 job training through its After School University program.
Toyota’s largest plant in North America, Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. (TMMK) started production in May 1988. The Georgetown, Kentucky, plant employs 6,600 full time team members and represents a $5.3 billion investment. TMMK produces the Camry, Camry Hybrid, Avalon and Venza as well as four-cylinder and V-6 engines and other engine components. Since 1987, TMMK has donated more than $38 million to Kentucky organizations
Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc.