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Business briefs: Companies help with storm recovery effort

Several companies with West Virginia operations have reacted to Superstorm Sandy by making charitable contributions and one, Verizon Wireless, is planning a food drive.

Toyota announced a $1 million contribution to the American Red Cross and other nonprofit organizations to support relief efforts in the regions hit worst by the storm.

In addition, Toyota said it will match employee contributions to the American Red Cross and other non-profits doing relief and recovery work in affected communities.

The AT&T Foundation, the charitable arm of AT&T, announced a $250,000 grant to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief fund.

AT&T Wireless announced that its customers can make a $10 donation for Hurricane Sandy relief by texting to the following non-profits: REDCROSS to 90999 to support the American Red Cross; STORM to 80888 to help the Salvation Army; and HUMANE to 80888 to give to the American Humane Society.

Customers who want to contribute more can text up to five times for a total donation of $50. AT&T Wireless said 100 percent of any donation will be paid to the customer's designated charity and the customer will be charged for the donation via the customer's monthly AT&T bill.

FirstEnergy Foundation, the charitable arm of FirstEnergy Corp., has contributed $20,000 to the West Virginia Chapter of the American Red Cross. FirstEnergy is the corporate parent of Monongahela Power and The Potomac Edison Co.

Verizon Wireless announced it will conduct a food drive to benefit the Mountaineer Food Bank.

Beginning Friday, Verizon Wireless will collect non-perishable food items at five locations around the state, including its store next to the Dairy Queen on the second floor of the Charleston Town Center Mall and its store next to Lowe's in the Shops at Trace Fork, off Corridor G.

Verizon Wireless also said it will donate $5,000 to the Mountaineer Food Bank to help with the anticipated increased demand for food as residents recover from the damage caused by Sandy.

Group to sponsor small business summit

West Virginia Small and Micro Business Alliance for Economic Inclusion will sponsor a Small Business Resource Summit from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. today at the Tamarack Conference Center in Beckley.

The U.S. Small Business Administration's West Virginia District Office, West Virginia Small Business Development Center and the West Virginia Women's Business Center will be among participants. The Summit is free.

For more information about the Summit and Cafe, go to or contact John Meeks at 919-787-8727, Ext. 4915 or email

Sustainability projects set to be showcased

Community based sustainability projects will be showcased from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday at Stonewall Resort.

Featured projects will range from energy efficiency initiatives to local food projects, building deconstruction, job training and historic renovation. Also, sustainability technical assistance providers will be available for consultations.

The showcase is sponsored by West Virginia Sustainable Communities.

Jamie Durant, the West Virginia Sustainable Communities coordinator, said, "This is a great opportunity for our member communities to learn from each other and the technical assistance providers and begin planning for their next big project.

Gregory Adolfson, sustainability officer at the state Department of Environmental Protection, said the agency is committed to West Virginia Sustainable Communities, "and to protecting and improving the environmental, economic, and socio-cultural quality of life for all of West Virginia's citizens. The bottom line is that sustainability is an important agenda for West Virginia, and it is here to stay."

For more information, call Durant at 304 734-6710 or Brian Bolyard at 304 516-3296.



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