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Newman's Own Foundation Recognizes UAlbany Students' Efforts to Mentor At-Risk Youth in the Capital Region

National Award Supports Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region

ALBANY, N.Y. (March 5, 2012) -- The University at Albany student group Reclassifying All Children Equally Organization (R.A.C.E.) was recognized nationally on Sunday by Newman's Own Foundation for its efforts mentoring at-risk youths in the community. As part of the third-annual Newman's Own Foundation Campus Community Service Challenge, R.A.C.E. Organization partnered with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region for a Newman's Own Foundation grant. R.A.C.E. Organization was awarded $10,000 during this weekend's America East basketball tournament in Hartford, Conn.

This marks the second time UAlbany has been named a finalist to Newman's Own Challenge. In 2011, UAlbany student group Third World Impact was recognized for its efforts to build a primary school for more than 500 students in Uganda.

"Community service is a vital part of the UAlbany educational experience," said UAlbany President George Philip. "We congratulate our students and their partner, Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region, for their commitment to mentor at-risk youths and serve as positive role models in the community."

R.A.C.E. Organization and Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region will use the grant to continue offering adult mentors to children from the community. Together, both organizations provide mentoring services to at-risk youths between ages 6 and 18 whose circumstances—poverty, single parent household, imprisoned parent — place them at risk for school failure and delinquency.

"Each year, because of the volunteerism of UAlbany students, our agency is able to serve 50-60 Albany County children whose lives will be changed for the better," said chief executive Officer Sabrina Houser. "The grant will allow us to serve more children and match more local youth with UAlbany students. We are fortunate to have this partnership and the backing of UAlbany believing in our mission and our kids. In addition to mentoring support, R.A.C.E. will donate proceeds of its upcoming Youth Benefit Talent Show to help support programs offered by the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region."

"We're so happy and honored to help Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region enhance its programs for local youths." said Joel Livingston, R.A.C.E. Organization founder and president. "I get easily attached to the young people I work with because they are very similar to myself growing up in a single parent, low-income household without a father figure. I try my best to be the positive, male figure in their lives and show them that they can look past the challenges they're facing and live a better life."

R.A.C.E. Organization and Big Brothers and Big Sisters of the Capital Region's application was reviewed and voted on by the Challenge’s Selection Panel. Grant recommendations were based on R.A.C.E.'s involvement with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region, the impact of the partnership on those served by the nonprofit, as well as on the students themselves. The Selection Panel also considered the mission and programs of, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region, the impact the Foundation’s grant will have on them.

"One of the Foundation’s priorities is the encouragement of philanthropy, especially among a younger population," said Bob Forrester, president of Newman's Own Foundation. "These student volunteers represent the next generation of leadership. We are inspired by their work and proud to support them through the Campus Community Service Challenge."

About Newman's Own Foundation

Paul Newman was committed to helping make the world a better place. To carry on his philanthropic legacy, Newman's Own Foundation donates to charity all net royalties and profits after taxes it receives from the sale of Newman’s Own products. To date, Paul Newman and Newman's Own Foundation have given over $300 million to thousands of charities around the world.

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