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Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians named Champion in Action®

Organization receives $25,000 grant and other benefits

PHILADELPHIA    (January 20, 2010) - Four of the region’s foremost corporate organizations announced today that the Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians is the latest nonprofit to be named a Champion in Action®.

The Welcoming Center received the Champion in Action recognition because of its mission of providing employment and referral services for newly arrived immigrants to Pennsylvania. As a Champion in Action, the Welcoming Center will receive a $25,000 grant, media coverage, and extensive promotional and volunteer support over the next three months.

Champions in Action is an innovative program that provides various forms of support for small nonprofit organizations in recognition of their contributions to communities throughout the five-county Philadelphia area. Since the program’s inception in 2003, 24 Champions have been selected, including today’s announced recipient.

“Citizens Bank is pleased to join NBC 10, Greater Philadelphia Cares, The Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News and Philly.com in naming the Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians as our latest Champion in Action,” said Daniel K. Fitzpatrick, Citizens Bank President and CEO for Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. “Although it’s a relative newcomer – founded in 2003 – the Welcoming Center already has made a big impact. The center has assisted more than 6,000 clients from more than 90 countries. These new citizens provide a boost to both our economy and the fabric of society.”

“As always, NBC 10 is proud to participate in the Champions in Action program,” said NBC 10 President and General Manager Dennis Bianchi. “Not only do programs like this enable us to demonstrate our community commitment, but it gives us the chance to both thank and promote local nonprofits, such as the Welcoming Center, that tirelessly perform necessary services under the radar. The Welcoming Center helps bolster our community by giving some of our newest residents the tools they need to succeed.”

“New Americans are an important part of Pennsylvania and the Welcoming Center provides needed services, such as workforce training, vocational literacy programs and legal clinics that help ease what can be a difficult transition,” said Carol Dooling, Director of Communications and Partnerships at The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News and philly.com. “For example, the agency’s employment department placed 196 work-authorized immigrants in jobs at an average wage of $9.37 per hour in fiscal year 2008.”

“As with many nonprofit agencies, the Welcoming Center often operates on a shoestring budget. We’re glad to provide volunteer support so it can better accomplish its mission,” said Frankie Lancos, Interim Executive Director of Greater Philadelphia Cares. “We’re hopeful the exposure the Welcoming Center receives not only publicizes its worthy mission, but generates new partnerships and new volunteers.”

Welcoming Center Executive Director Anne O’Callaghan and her staff were surprised today during a taping of the 10! Show on NBC 10. As a Champion in Action, the Welcoming Center will receive:

  • A $25,000 contribution in unrestricted funds from the Citizens Bank Foundation.
  • Media coverage from NBC 10, including public service announcements and profiles.
  • Advertising space in The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News and on Philly.com to promote both the program and the organization.
  • Volunteer support from Citizens Bank, NBC 10 and Greater Philadelphia Cares.
  • Extensive public relations support.
  • Promotional support, highlighting the Champion in Action in all Citizens Bank branches.
  • Exposure on the Web sites of Citizens Bank, NBC 10 and Philly.com.
  • Consulting and implementation services, provided by Greater Philadelphia Cares, to leverage volunteer support that enhances impact.

About Citizens Financial Group, Inc.

Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania is a state-chartered bank with dual headquarters in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. It has 383 branches and 646 ATMs throughout Pennsylvania. It also operates 15 retail branches and 64 ATMs in southern New Jersey and a commercial loan office in Virginia. It is a subsidiary of Citizens Financial Group, Inc., a $151 billion commercial bank holding company headquartered in Providence, R.I.

Citizens Financial Group, through its subsidiaries, has more than 1,500 branches, and approximately 3,500 ATMs and approximately 22,600 employees. CFG’s two bank subsidiaries are RBS Citizens, N.A. and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. They operate a 12-state branch network under the Citizens Bank brand in Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont, and the Charter One brand in Illinois, Michigan and Ohio. CFG has non-branch retail and commercial offices in about 40 states. CFG is owned by RBS (The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc).

About NBC 10

NBC 10, one of 10 Owned & Operated NBC television stations, is located in Bala Cynwyd, Pa., a suburb of Philadelphia. Millions of viewers throughout Greater Philadelphia, Lehigh Valley, South Jersey and Delaware tune into NBC 10 everyday for the most up-to-date news, weather, sports, consumer, health and traffic reports. Viewers also tune in daily to watch “The 10! Show,” an upbeat, one-hour lifestyle and entertainment show featuring local, national and internationally known celebrities. The program airs Monday through Friday at 11 a.m. Recognized as the No. 1 Web site (www.nbcphiladelphia.com) in the top 50 markets, NBCphiladelphia.com received the prestigious National Edward R. Murrow Award.

About Philadelphia Media Holdings

Philadelphia Media Holdings, LLC, is the leading media company in the Philadelphia region. Privately held and locally owned, PMH is the owner of The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News, philly.com, related online products and several community newspapers. Philly.com is the region’s #1 local media Web site, with more than 4.5 million unique visitors each month. Together with The Inquirer, the region’s most-read daily newspaper, and the Daily News, the #1 tab newspaper in the region, Philadelphia Media Holdings, LLC, reaches almost 2.5 million unduplicated people each week.

About Greater Philadelphia Cares

An award-winning nonprofit, Greater Philadelphia Cares is committed to empowering individuals to realize their ability to contribute to the community in meaningful ways. By providing a variety of flexible, tangible volunteer opportunities, Greater Philadelphia Cares is continuously enhancing the ability for volunteers to serve the community.

About Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians

The Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians connects newly arrived individuals from around the world with the economic opportunities that they need to succeed in our region. Since opening its doors in 2003, it has assisted more than 6,000 clients from more than 90 countries. The center believes that a steady influx of new customers, workers, and entrepreneurs can reinvigorate Pennsylvania's aging population, renew its neighborhoods, and re-energize our economy. By making Pennsylvania a magnet for immigrants, it will become a more vibrant, more creative, and more dynamic competitor in today's global economy. The Welcoming Center’s Web site is www.welcomingcenter.org