PPG and the PPG Foundation announced an investment of $13.3 million in 2021 to support more than 500 community partners and programs in the U.S. and internationally that are focused on education, social and racial equity, and community sustainability.

“As neighbors reunited and classrooms welcomed back students in 2021, we engaged our global community partners and employee volunteers to help communities thrive in the areas we call home,” said Malesia Dunn, executive director, PPG Foundation and corporate global social responsibility. “Our support centered around revitalizing classrooms and activating our commitment to advance diversity, equity and inclusion through education, hands-on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) learning, and community volunteerism to bring color and brightness to the world.”

Highlights of 2021 community engagement commitments by PPG and the PPG Foundation include:

  •        $6.6 million to build the next generation of diverse and innovative STEM leaders. Through a partnership with the Pittsburgh Promise, the PPG Foundation funded scholarships for post-secondary access to education that will help fuel a prepared, diverse regional workforce. In Milan, Italy, PPG teamed up with the National Museum of Science and Technology Leonardo da Vinci on a state-of-the-art, interactive lab designed for programs like color-based chemistry workshops. Through these programs and more, PPG funding prioritized STEM learning and career possibilities; created opportunities for young women to explore science-based learning and meet female role models in STEM-related fields; and grew partnerships with leading universities to establish launching points for a diverse STEM talent pipeline.
  •       37% progress toward commitment to invest $20 million by 2025 supporting programs for Black communities and people of color in the U.S. The PPG Foundation strengthened its focus on programs that provide educational pathways for Black communities, people of color and other historically underrepresented populations. Through programs like the STEM Coding Lab’s summer camp, CS Explorers and the Michigan Science Center’s Explainer’s Project, PPG partnerships sparked early interest in exploration and discovery and helped students see the connections between STEM ideas and real-life innovations and careers. The PPG Foundation also supported diverse students entering advanced, post-secondary STEM studies through partnerships with professional organizations, including the National Black MBA Association and the National Society of Black Engineers.
  •        $5.9 million to community transformations, essential needs and social justice: As various parts of the world faced and recovered from unforeseen natural disasters and pandemic-related hardships, PPG and the PPG Foundation supported essential needs and community rebuilding programs. The response included partnerships with the American Red Cross to support local emergency relief and recovery efforts following Hurricane Ida; Diecézní Charita Brno to provide financial assistance and support following a category F4 tornado in the South Moravia region of the Czech Republic; and Give2Asia to fund emergency equipment at five hospitals across India during the Delta variant surge. Grantmaking in the U.S. also included social justice initiatives with organizations such as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund and Asian Americans Advancing Justice.
  •        56 COLORFUL COMMUNITIES projects completed in 2021 in 17 countries: PPG’s global Colorful Communities program now has 386 projects completed since 2015. Over the last six years, more than 18,000 employee and community volunteers have used PPG paint products to bring color and brightness to community assets in 42 countries, positively impacting more than 7.4 million people.

Throughout 2021, Colorful Communities projects focused on offsetting the heavy tolls of pandemic-caused learning challenges by using color to create effective learning environments and positive educational experiences for students around the world. PPG’s employee resource networks in the U.S. also partnered with organizations that share similar affinities to transform spaces that serve diverse communities. These included:

  • Luis Muñoz Marín Dual Language Academy in Cleveland, Ohio: PPG volunteers brought courage and creativity to life through fresh colors and lively murals that helped reinvigorate students’ surroundings as they returned to their classrooms following more than a year of remote learning.
  • PPG Stiwewa Buurtcentrum in Winti Wai, Suriname: PPG employees helped paint interior and exterior walls, including murals, of the new PPG Stiwewa Buurtcentrum (Community Center). Located near a PPG manufacturing site, the building was designed to provide social support for area residents that includes educational and employment assistance for young people and fun, recreational programs for all.
  • Instituto Eurípedes in Araraquara, Brazil: At an educational center for vulnerable children and families, PPG facilitated the painting of two buildings, a colorful mural, several classrooms and a sports court. The center offers classes for children and teenagers while supporting around 200 families since the onset of the pandemic. PPG volunteers also planned an interactive activity, including painting flowerpots, with the children who attend the center.
  • Three elementary schools in the Philippines: PPG volunteers in the Philippines continued a partnership with GMA Kapuso Foundation to support the rehabilitation of Mabini Elementary School in Catanduanes province and Abariongan Uneg and Calassitan Elementary Schools in Cagayan Valley province.

“As a science and technology company, we know firsthand the importance of educational opportunities to create a more sustainable community and accelerate pathways for diverse students and communities. We see fresh paint colors transform spaces where students feel resilient and ready to learn,” said Dunn. “Through all of our efforts in 2021, we prioritized opportunities to demonstrate the power of volunteerism and education to reflect on our company’s purpose to ‘protect and beautify the world.’”
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