Cox focused on helping low-income students, nonprofits in pandemic

Cox Communications, the largest private telecom company in America, is involved in two initiatives this month as part of its ongoing effort to meet a “great need” among  low-income students and their families in Arizona during the pandemic. 

In its latest effort, Cox partnered with the Arizona Cardinals and State Farm last week to give 150 computers and one free year of high speed internet to 150 families in Phoenix. Families in the Phoenix Elementary and Roosevelt school districts are receiving the free computers and one free year of Cox’s Connect2Compete high speed internet.

“As schools continue to find ways to educate kids outside the classroom, we don’t want to see kids get left behind just because their family can’t afford a computer and an internet connection in the home,” said Susan Anable, Cox’s southwest vice president of public affairs.

All of the students selected qualify for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or live in public housing.

Access to technology at home is critical to the quality of a student’s education, yet many students in America lack internet access, Anable said. One-third of households with children 6 to 17 years old do not have high speed internet in their homes, according to Cox. 

To address the need, Cox offers an option for low-income families with school-age children through its Connect2Compete program. Qualifying families can receive home internet with wifi for $9.95 a month. 

Of the parents enrolled in the program, 91 percent agree that low-cost internet service at home gives children a leg up for high school graduation.

Cox Charities accepting grant applications through May 29

Cox also announced last week that it is accepting applications through May 29 for grants up to $10,000 each from Arizona nonprofits that work with youth and education. 

Now more than ever, nonprofits are relying on giving to be able to continue to support children in their communities, said Anable, citing a new report conducted by the Arizona State University (ASU) Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation. 

The report, which surveyed 449 Arizona nonprofits, portrays a sector struggling under the weight of the pandemic:

  •        Nearly 80 percent reported a reduction in normal services
  •        Eleven percent are not operating at all
  •        Almost 40 percent of all arts and culture nonprofits are not operating
  •        Just under 20 percent will not be able meet payroll in eight weeks
  •        Only 5 percent report they are operating normally

That’s why supporting them is so critical right now, Anable said. 

“Continuing our history of supporting the communities in Arizona where our employees live and work, Cox recognizes how vital our youth and education-focused nonprofit community is to provide vital support for children in our state. At a time when donations are down sharply due to the pandemic, our 3,200 employees are extending a helping hand.”   

Last year, Cox Charities distributed nearly $570,000 to more than 100 youth and education-focused nonprofits across Arizona. Cox Charities funds are raised through employee-driven fundraisers and personal contributions throughout the year, as well as community fundraising partnerships. 

For the guidelines and grant applications, go to: Cox Charities Grants.

Cox has almost 3 million customers in Arizona

As the largest private telecom company in the U.S., Cox has 6 million residential and commercial customers. Cox has about 20,000 employees nationwide. Total revenues in 2016 were $11 billion. 

While Cox operates cable systems in 18 states, almost half its customers are in Arizona where it employs more than 3,200 workers. In metro Phoenix, it serves more than 2.5 million subscribers and in Southern Arizona approximately 400,000. 

Cox Communications is the largest division of Cox Enterprises, a family-owned business founded in 1898 by Governor James M. Cox of Ohio.

Victoria Harker

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