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By Bill Mills, CEO for North America, Citi November 14, 2012 03:00 PM
At Citi, corporate citizenship is not a stand-alone initiative. We integrate our citizenship efforts and community support into all of our core business activities.
Last week, Citi was recognized as the top financial services company and the second ranked organization overall in The Civic 50 survey - the first comprehensive ranking of S&P 500 corporations that measures how well companies use their time, talent, and resources to improve the quality of life in the communities where they do business.
The survey was conducted by the National Conference on Citizenship and Points of Light, the nation's definitive experts on civic engagement, in partnership with Bloomberg LP.
By Pat Edwards, Citi Community Development, Jill Kelly, Citi Community Development and Florencia Spangaro, Citi Foundation November 14, 2012 12:30 PM
From November 10-12, more than 470 Citi employees, friends and family members fanned out across the greater New York region to support the massive disaster relief operation being led by the American Red Cross, which is mobilizing 7,000 volunteers to assist more than 246,000 families impacted by Hurricane Sandy. Citi volunteers answered the call to service, and performed a variety of tasks to support the relief effort.
Reporting to central gathering locations in Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, Manhattan and on Long Island, volunteers were then divided into teams and transported to impacted communities or to warehouses to help manage the flow of relief supplies.
By Suni Harford, Citi Regional Head of Markets, North America and Bob Annibale, Global Director, Citi Community Development and Microfinance November 13, 2012 05:00 PM
Through our Citi Salutes™ initiative, Citi is proud to support the men and women who have served our country, on Veterans Day and every day.
Our community development-based approach is rooted in making sure veterans and military families have access to employment as well as financial products and services that suit their unique needs, and that they can use to build the skills they need to achieve their personal and professional ambitions. One of the ways in which we accomplish this is through partnerships with veterans service organizations, and this year we have also provided resources and access to expertise that can address a range of challenges that veterans often face.
By Bob Annibale, Global Director, Citi Community Development and Microfinance November 09, 2012 03:45 PM
Because of the large geographic impact of Hurricane Sandy, many communities have been affected in very different ways and are now confronting a range of challenges based on the storm's impact. Frontline community-based organizations are critical to the social and economic health of many of these severely affected neighborhoods.
Our support for these organizations, many of which have been working in these communities for decades, will help ensure the right resources and assistance are quickly directed to those most in need.
Today, Citi Community Development announced $500,000 in emergency funding to five community organizations -- Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE) in Manhattan; Long Island Housing Partnership; Margert Community Corporation in the Rockaways, Queens; Neighborhood Housing Services of Staten Island; and Ironbound Community Corporation in Newark, New Jersey -- to expand their relief efforts in neighborhoods across the region that are struggling in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
By Jenny Flores, Northern California Regional Director, Citi Community Development November 06, 2012 02:00 PM
A new documentary film "A Foot in the Door" tells the story of the nation's first universal college savings program, San Francisco's Kindergarten to College, through the personal experiences of participating students and parents.
The film was co-produced by Citi Community Development, San Francisco Office of Financial Empowerment, and the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED), to tell the story of this unique program. Kindergarten to College was launched by the City and County of San Francisco in 2010, and is now providing college savings accounts to every kindergarten student entering public school.
Last week, I was thrilled to attend the premier of "A Foot in the Door" at the Brava Theater in San Francisco along with the award-winning filmmakers at GroundSpark and Citizen Film, several of the families featured in the film, and local officials.
By Bob Annibale, Global Director, Citi Community Development and Microfinance and Maggie McCullough, President, PolicyMap October 17, 2012 02:30 PM
Public policy decisions that impact the communities we serve are not always made with the benefit of accurate, targeted data. The irregular borders of Congressional districts force policy practitioners to cull data from a range of sources across overlapping geographies to produce an inherently incomplete picture of economic, employment, financial, educational and housing conditions at the district level.
Policymakers and community groups alike need more granular and more accurate data in order to understand the similarities and disparities between districts and make recommendations that will impact their constituents' lives.
That's why Citi Community Development and PolicyMap have worked together to create a new interactive, web-based tool - My District Data - that forges a critical link between federal decisions and local accountability. My District Data aggregates data from 10 sources in one easy-to-use platform that presents a clear and reliable state-of-the-district analysis, and users can compare district-level statistics against national benchmarks.
By Bob Annibale, Global Director, Citi Community Development and Microfinance October 05, 2012 02:00 PMSheldon Caplis, Citi Community Development Regional Director, accepts the Migration Policy Institute E Pluribis Unim Corporate Leadership Award from Brad Davidson of the J.M. Kaplan Fund, which underwrites the program
According to a U.S. Census Bureau report published last week, U.S. real median household income declined between 2011 and 2010 by 1.5% to $50,054 - 8.9% below its peak in 1999. For non-citizen households, median household income is even lower at $37,894. In contrast, median income of naturalized citizen households is $51,926 - 37% higher than non-citizen households and 3.7% higher than the national median income. Numbers and trends don't tell the whole story, but the magnitude of the difference indicates that citizenship is a valuable economic asset and that naturalization leads to opportunities for higher income and achieving other household goals.
Citi is joining a number of great community partners to empower our nation's aspiring citizens to realize the goal of naturalization and access the economic opportunities associated with citizenship. In the U.S., the application cost of naturalization is $680 (and much higher for those who also pay intermediaries to assist), which is unfortunately beyond the means of many eligible applicants. To overcome this financial obstacle, Citi is supporting important pilot programs that provide microloans, along with legal and application assistance, to help pay for naturalization while enabling borrowers to build credit and increase their access to financial services. In doing so, we are assisting our newest citizens in not only building their national identities, but also their financial identities.
By Bob Annibale, Global Director, Citi Microfinance and Community Development September 27, 2012 02:00 PMClick the photo above to watch video
This week, Citi helped to launch the Better Than Cash Alliance, a coalition of public, private and NGO partners that will call on governments, the development community and the private sector to adopt the use of electronic payments for programs that support the underbanked -- and provide resources to those who commit to make the transition.
According to a report commissioned by the Better Than Cash Alliance and released by specialist consultancy Bankable Frontier Associates, roughly 2.6 billion people live on less than $2 per day and 90 percent of them lack access to formal financial services, mainly operating in a cash-only economy that is vulnerable to theft, loss, lack of transparency, and inefficiencies.x
By Natalie Abatemarco, Managing Director, Citi Community Development September 25, 2012 09:00 AM
I recently had the opportunity to join a coalition of committed public, private and nonprofit sector leaders at the 2012 Veteran Access to Housing Summit, where we shared ideas about how to end veteran homelessness. Hosted by the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans (NCHV), this gathering was supported by Citi as a joint effort of our Citi Salutes initiative and Citi Community Development.
Safe, sustainable and affordable housing is one of the many challenges facing those who have served our nation - whether they returned home decades ago or in recent months as a result of the continued drawdown of troops. Statistics drawn from NCHV reports paint a stark picture:
- Nearly one in seven homeless adults is a veteran.
- About 145,000 veterans experience homelessness at some point during the year, and approximately 1.5 million veterans are at risk of homelessness.
- There is a critical need for 90,000 units of permanent housing for homeless and low-income veterans.
By Haroon Saeed, Assistant Vice President, Citi Pakistan August 07, 2012 12:00 PM
Citi Pakistan is humbled to be awarded by the United Nations Global Compact Pakistan Network for our 'Best Practices in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).' The United Nations Global Compact is a strategic policy initiative for businesses that are committed to aligning their operations and strategies with 10 universally accepted principles in the areas of human rights, labor, environment and anti-corruption. This recognition comes on the heels of three other recent global CSR awards that Citi Pakistan has won during 2011 and 2012 for our pioneering work in the microfinance and education spheres in Pakistan.