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Cities of Service to work with civic volunteers in seven cities to bolster disaster preparedness

NEW YORK April 11, 2017 Cities of Service is proud to announce the launch of its new Impact Volunteering grant program, Prepared Together. Made possible with generous support from the Walmart Foundation, selected cities will engage citizen volunteers in initiatives that better prepare the city for natural or man-made disasters.

Each of the selected cities will receive a $25,000 grant, high-touch consulting services, programmatic support, and two AmeriCorps VISTA members (with the exception of San Leandro) for a one-year program aimed at better preparing cities for disasters.

"With support from the Walmart Foundation, Cities of Service is expanding disaster preparedness programming to launch Prepared Together, which will strengthen relationships between citizens and local government while helping cities prepare for, prevent, and handle future disasters," said Cities of Service Executive Director Myung J. Lee.

"The Walmart Foundation is proud to support Cities of Service – their model not only builds disaster resilience by unlocking human capital, but also increases community cohesion through citizen and government collaboration," said Walmart Giving Senior Director Kabir Kumar.

Cities of Service selected the following seven cities to carry out preparedness initiatives:

Daly City, CA, will expand the city's green infrastructure to prevent flooding.

Oakland, CA, will tap residents to design and implement neighborhood-level projects to better prepare for disasters.

San Leandro, CA, will engage trained citizen volunteers to lead and mobilize other citizens to perform flood-control projects in neighborhoods, including clearing storm drains, hazardous debris, and more. 

San José, CA, will preserve and create green infrastructure to help prevent storm damage.

Hoboken, NJ, will install and maintain green infrastructure to minimize stormwater flooding.

Jersey City, NJ, will alleviate flooding challenges by preserving and expanding green infrastructure.

Newark, NJ, will address flooding and extreme heat by increasing the number of cool roofs, trees, and rain barrels throughout the city.

"This grant will make Hoboken a more sustainable and resilient community by providing green jobs training for low-income residents and high school students, while helping us expand and maintain our green infrastructure," said Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer.

"With this support from Cities of Service, we look forward to further building upon our Resilient Oakland strategy to increase access to opportunity for all Oaklanders and build more vibrant infrastructure to support our thriving future," said Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf.

"Through this generous grant and our new #BeautifySJ campaign, we'll engage even more residents in creating a greener, cleaner, and more resilient community," said San José Mayor Sam Liccardo.

About Cities of Service

A national nonprofit organization, Cities of Service helps mayors and city leaders tap the knowledge, creativity, and service of citizens to solve public problems and create vibrant cities. Started in 2009 by New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, the Cities of Service coalition is now comprised of over 225 cities in the US and UK, representing nearly 55 million people in 45 states, and more than 10 million people in the UK.

About Philanthropy at Walmart

Walmart Foundation's mission is to create opportunities so people can live better. We consider it our responsibility to make a positive impact in the communities we serve. Whether it's through the grants we provide to the thousands of organizations that share our mission or through the inspiring volunteer efforts of Walmart associates, we are passionate about helping people live better. One community at a time. The Walmart Foundation meets the needs of the under-served by directing charitable giving toward our core areas of focus: Opportunity, Sustainability, and Community.  To learn more about Walmart's giving, visit giving.walmart.com/foundation.


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