Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced a software grant worth $5 million for the National Urban League last week, during Microsoft's 16th annual Blacks at Microsoft Minority Student Day, an event designed to teach minority students about opportunities in technology.
The technology grant from Microsoft will provide the National Urban League and its 102 affiliates with software to meet the organization's goal of empowering communities and changing lives.
"Access to technology and strong computer skills is necessary to ensure that our community is more economically competitive," said Marc H. Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League. "As a result of Microsoft's generosity, the National Urban League and our affiliates will have the technology needed to enhance our wide array of programs from education assistance and job training to home ownership and business development initiatives."
"In turn," Morial said. "We'll be able to better assist the over 600,000 African American children and families we serve nationwide and help them to acquire the necessary skills to close the digital divide that still exists in America today."
The $5 million dollar software grant will be rolled out over the next three years to give the National Urban League and its affiliates the technology system assessments and software needed to enhance its adult and youth programs as well as to encourage kids to pursue careers in science and math.
The grant also will provide the National Urban League's office with tools to integrate data systems and more effectively communicate with Urban League affiliates and their volunteer corps across the nation.
"Microsoft is dedicated to working with organizations that serve and support diverse communities by providing educational opportunities," said Claudette Whiting, general manager of Global Diversity and Inclusion at Microsoft.
"We are proud to work with the National Urban League to bring technology into urban communities," she said.