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IBM Donates More Than 2.5 Million Hours of Volunteer Service to Communities Worldwide as Part of Centennial Day of Service


IBM Provides Community Service in Over 120 Countries Globally, Surpassing 12 Million Hours of Service since 2003

ARMONK, N.Y. - IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that as part of its Celebration of Service, designed to allow employees, retirees, clients and business partners to donate their time and expertise during the company’s Centennial year, 300,000 IBMers around the world -- close to three quarters of its global workforce -- are volunteering in more than 5,000 projects in 120 countries, meeting civic and societal challenges and serving millions in need.

Since January 2011, IBMers, retirees and their families have donated more than 2.5 million hours of service to communities worldwide.

“To commemorate our 100 years as a corporation, IBM is setting a record for community service by sharing the best skills of our employees, making a real impact in the communities where we work and live,” said Stanley S. Litow, Vice President, Corporate Citizenship and Corporate Affairs, IBM. “While this represents a historic and record setting amount of service, what is most important is not the large number of employees volunteering nor the millions of hours of service they are providing, it is the high quality of the work that is being done. The impact will go far beyond the one day. We are building on our strong heritage of skills based service – a commitment that is in IBM’s DNA.”

“By bringing together its employees, retirees, partners and community members, IBM is undertaking the largest service challenge, of its kind, we have seen to date,” said Michelle Nunn, CEO of Points of Light Institute. “They are creating not only an impact on communities, but they are applying the unique and powerful IBM assets to catalyze a movement around service. We commend them for celebrating 100 years of corporate civic leadership in such a remarkable way.”

The IBM Celebration of Service spans more than 120 countries where IBMers live and conduct business. Today, June 15, is the day before IBM officially recognizes its founding 100 years ago, and culminates months of volunteering with an official IBM Centennial Day of Service.

A selection of IBM Celebration of Service volunteer activities on June 15 include:

Chairman and CEO Sam Palmisano will teach a classroom of middle school students in his hometown of Baltimore, Maryland about science and math through a discussion around Watson, the computer system that IBM invented which triumphed on the popular TV game show Jeopardy! ;
In Nigeria, IBM employees will mentor 100 small businesses for 100 days using the SME Toolkit to coach entrepreneurs on various areas of business ranging from how to write a business plan, sales and marketing and small business accounting. Each entrepreneur also will have a “meet the mentor” session where IBM volunteers will help them achieve business goals;
In New Zealand, IBMers will work with Age Concern to assist senior citizens in using mobile phone technology to help prepare for emergencies such as natural disasters, earthquakes or personal health issues;
In Turkey, IBM will host a ’volunteer marketplace’ for 600 employees, bringing together 21 leading NGOs to discuss and initiate skills-based volunteering projects. Some projects include reading and book recording for the blind and an introduction to science and technology for middle school students.
In Uruguay, IBMers will mentor young Uruguayans from impoverished neighborhoods to help them find their first jobs by partnering with NGO Projoven through the National Institute of Employment and Vocational Training.
Together, IBM and its client Citigroup are partnering to improve literacy and technology awareness. In Mexico, with The Hunger Project, the companies are leveraging an IBM Reading Companion project to help reduce the level of illiteracy among the indigenous population which will improve their overall quality of life.
In New Jersey in the United States, 100 IBMers will come together to support Newark, New Jersey Mayor Cory Booker, the city’s Chief Service Officer and local schools through multiple activities both inside and outside the classroom with the theme of having fun with math and science.
In China, IBMers will collaborate with the Wuhan Municipal Government, business partners and NGOs to build a “City Cloud” computing platform. Through the platform, Internet of Things and cloud computing technologies will be used to commemorate the cultural heritage of the Xinhai Revolution (1911 uprising that overthrew the Qing Dynasty). This is the first time that historical and humanistic elements have been integrated in the construction of a Smarter City as a part of diversified city development.
In multiple locations throughout India, local IBMers will host science fairs to promote and demonstrate the importance of science to more than 1,000 school children.


In addition to the millions of service hours IBM’s employees, retirees, families, clients and partners are donating, IBM is also donating some of its most successful volunteer activity kits such as a solar car experiment, a clean water project and an Internet safety kit for children. These volunteer kits provide “how-to” instructions and step-by-step details to successfully implement a volunteer activity in the community. They are aimed to inspire volunteers to connect with their communities and help create a smarter planet. Anyone can visit to access service activity kits.

As part of its Centennial celebration, IBM will deliver hundreds of new service grants, valued at more than $12 million, which support employees’ volunteer activities to build a smarter planet. The service grants include cash and equipment awards that support employees’ volunteer activities. The new technology and cash grants expand IBM’s commitment to communities by 140 percent over the last year.


Earlier this year, the company released “The Systems of Service,” a white paper with findings from a Service Jam, an online brainstorming event that brought together 15,000 experts from non-profit organizations, corporations, academic institutions and government agencies across ideology and geography. The intent of the Jam was to begin a global conversation about improving the delivery of service in the 21st century. The white paper concluded that there are new steps needed in the service industry in the areas of: service learning and incorporating volunteer service into school curricula, measuring the impact of service, and reviewing ways that non profits can prepare to receive volunteers, and corporations can offer volunteers.

About IBM: For more information on the IBM Centennial, visit:

Editors: Visit IBM’s Centennial press room to obtain historical images, a snapshot of milestones and other related Centennial news at

Registered journalists and bloggers can download b-roll footage about IBM’s Centennial at

Photos are available on the Associated Press Photo Network and on the Internet at Feature Photo Service’s link on Newscom at

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