United Way of New York City, Wells Fargo and CohnReznick Give Back in the Bronx


Distributed Backpacks & School Supplies in Mott Haven

NEW YORK, NY – Last Friday, over 1,200 students, faculty and volunteers came out for a backpack giveaway sponsored by United Way of New York City, Wells Fargo Securities and CohnReznick LLP in Mott Haven, one of the lowest income communities in the Bronx and New York City. 1,000 backpacks were distributed to first and second graders at P.S. 179, P.S. 30, P.S. 43, P.S. 49 and P.S. 154, five of the most challenged schools in Mott Haven. 100 Wells Fargo volunteers pre-packaged the bags with basic school supplies such as rulers, composition notebooks, scissors and pencils. The bags and supplies were collected by CohnReznick as part of United Way of New York City’s Back-to-School Donation Drive.

“We applaud the outstanding efforts of our partners, Wells Fargo and CohnReznick, for participating in this year's Back-To-School Donation Drive which supports our ReadNYC schools in Mott Haven,” said Sheena Wright, President & CEO, UWNYC. "This is an amazing example of the significant impact volunteerism can make in NYC communities that need our help.”

Principal Sherry Font-Williams led an early morning pep rally at P.S. 179 to kick off the day’s events, with hundreds of students, staff and teachers cheering, singing and showing off their school spirit. United Way of New York City (UWNYC) volunteers then distributed the new backpacks filled with markers, colored pencils, scissors, notebooks, folders, rulers and more to over 200 excited students. The students were able to select their new backpacks, which came in a wide variety of colors and prints. Distributions continued throughout the day at the four other elementary schools, with more than 1,200 students going home with brand new supplies and backpacks.

The Mott Haven schools are supported by UWNYC’s ReadNYC program, which aims to boost literacy and improve education outcomes in our lowest income communities. Only 1 in 10 children in Mott Haven read on grade level by the third grade. Studies show that children who do not read at grade level by third grade are 70% less likely to graduate from high school. ReadNYC specifically targets grade level reading to help our students succeed.

“Wells Fargo Securities was thrilled to collaborate with United Way of New York City to help distribute 1,000 backpacks with their partner schools,” said Elise Wilkinson, SVP, Communications Manager, Wells Fargo Securities, Wells Fargo & Co. “In conjunction with their Community Support Campaign kickoff and with the United Way, nearly 100 Wells Fargo Securities team members packed hundreds of backpacks in less than two hours.”

“United Way of New York City has been working in P.S.179 for almost six years, and we are so grateful for their ongoing support,” said Principal Williams. “The programs they have offered us have had an incredibly positive impact on our school. They are truly invested in our kids and the future of the Mott Haven community.”

For media inquiries, contact Rida Bint Fozi at The TASC Group at 212-337-8870 or rida@thetascgroup.com.

About United Way of New York City

For more than 75 years, United Way of New York City has been the activist inside, working deep within the system to weave a net of interconnected solutions to catch our poorest neighbors. We orchestrate hundreds of partners in a symphony of hope, and mobilize communities to break down barriers and build opportunities that improve the lives of low-income New Yorkers for the benefit of all. We help ensure that short-term needs are being met while simultaneously working on long-term solutions to the city's most intractable problems. We envision caring communities where all individuals and families have access to quality education and the opportunity to lead healthy and financially secure lives. We are the activists inside, working to make New York City work for every New Yorker. FollowLike  and  Pin us, and learn more at  unitedwaynyc.org.

About Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified financial services company with $1.6 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 9,000 locations, more than 12,500 ATMs, online (wellsfargo.com), and mobile devices. We’re headquartered in San Francisco, but we’re decentralized so every local Wells Fargo store is a headquarters for satisfying all our customers’ financial needs and helping them succeed financially. We do business with one in three U.S. households. Wells Fargo has more than 265,000 team members in 36 countries across our approximately 90 businesses. At the end of second quarter 2014, Wells Fargo ranked fourth in assets among U.S. banks and was the world’s most valuable bank by market capitalization. In 2013, Euromoney named Wells Fargo “Best Bank” in its Global Awards for Excellence, the first time a U.S.-based bank has won the top award. The Chronicle of Philanthropy ranked Wells Fargo’s corporate giving in the top two among all U.S. companies each of the past two years.

About CohnReznick LLP

CohnReznick LLP provides clients with forward thinking advice that helps them navigate complex business and financial issues. With more than 2,500 employees nationwide, we provide the resources, technical skills and deep industry knowledge to help them succeed. Learn more at cohnreznick.com.