ELIZABETH – Bank of America again this year reinforced its commitment to helping build and support the communities it serves with a grant of $7,500 to Community Access Unlimited (CAU) for use in the agency’s employment services programs.
CAU provides support and services to people with disabilities and at-risk youth, including a variety of vocation and employment and training services designed to help members acquire skills necessary to secure and retain employment, earn money and achieve greater independence.
Members train for employment in areas that match their interests and skills and have access to education and training in basic math, reading and computer skills, as well as training that includes skills assessment, interviewing, dressing for success and interaction with others in the workplace. Members are competitively employed at either CAU or outside businesses such as Target and ShopRite.
“When people are able to work, they are better integrated into the fabric of the community and help make that community stronger,” said Joanne Oppelt, CAU development director. “The services we provide our members enable them to achieve greater independence and self-fulfillment while contributing to the community as consumers and taxpayers. The support we receive from our community partners such as Bank of America is so important to our members’ achieving success.”
Bank of America is committed to creating meaningful change in the communities the bank serves through philanthropic efforts, associate volunteerism, community development activities and investing, support of arts and culture programming and environmental initiatives, according to Anna Katherine Harris, senior vice president and consumer market executive. The bank seeks innovative programs designed to serve local community needs.
Working in partnership with community leaders, Bank of America directs the majority of its giving through local grants that address pressing social, economic and cultural needs of the communities it serves, Harris added.
“We like to provide grants within the communities where we live, work and serve,” she said.
Myrta Rosa is a CAU member who benefits from the agency’s programs and training. She works two days a week in CAU’s chat center, where she helps other members. Rosa also is a very active advocate for her rights and those of other people with disabilities.
“I like to keep busy helping other people,” she said. “I’ve always worked all my life.”
“This grant will directly support people like Myrta Rosa who work in our employment services programs, so they can be part of the community and contribute to the community,” Oppelt said.
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