NEW YORK, May 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Last night at its annual benefit, Robin Hood raised more than $80.3 million for its poverty-fighting efforts in New York City. A sold-out crowd of more than 4,200 attendees at the Jacob Javits Center helped celebrate Robin Hood's 25th birthday, and Robin Hood announced that all of the money raised will go toward funding NYC-based programs that will help transform the lives of children living in poverty.
Since its inception, Robin Hood has supported programs to give disadvantaged children the same opportunities to succeed. In addition to its work as New York City's largest private funder of emergency food programs, job training programs and homeless services, Robin Hood has supported 74 high-performing charter schools, and built an additional 62 libraries in public elementary schools throughout the City, giving students of all ages the tools they need to develop a lifelong love of learning.
The evening featured more than 250 New York City high school seniors from several charter schools supported by Robin Hood. These students – representing their graduating classmates from Achievement First Brooklyn High School, Democracy Prep High School, Harlem Children's Zone/Promise Academy, Harlem Village Academy, KIPP NYC College Prep, and Uncommon Charter High School – were recognized for their hard work and accomplishments. Every graduating student from these six schools will be going on to college – ranging from Adelphi University and Brown University to the U.S. Naval Academy and Williams College -- in the fall.
"A great education is the surest path out of poverty," said David Saltzman, executive director of Robin Hood. "Thanks to our generous donors, tens of thousands of New York City children will gain the educational and social support they need to ensure not only their own success, but the success of our City."
NBC Nightly News anchor and Robin Hood board member Brian Williams hosted last night's benefit, which also featured musical performances from GRAMMY Award Winning artists Mary J. Blige, Elton John and Bono.
The evening included special appearances and performances by rapper and actor LL Cool J, comedians Louis C.K., Jimmy Fallon, David Letterman and Jerry Seinfeld, and musical legends Paul Simon and Sting.
New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg served as honorary chairman of the benefit, and co-chairs included Robin Hood co-founder Paul Tudor Jones II and his wife Sonia; Robin Hood board member Marie-Josee Kravis and her husband Henry Kravis; Leslie Moonves, CEO of CBS Corporation and his wife Julie Chen; and actress Jessica Biel and her husband singer/actor Justin Timberlake.
In 2012, Robin Hood made $132 million in grants to more than 200 poverty fighting groups across the five boroughs; and because Robin Hood's board of directors covers all operating and fundraising costs, 100 percent of those funds went to organizations providing desperately needed services to hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers in need.
In addition to its core poverty-fighting work, the Robin Hood Relief Fund has raised and granted more than $70.5 million to nearly 400 organizations in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut that are helping victims of Hurricane Sandy rebuild and recover from the storm.
ABOUT THE ROBIN HOOD FOUNDATION
Robin Hood is New York's largest poverty-fighting organization, and since 1988 has focused on finding, funding, and creating programs and schools that generate meaningful results for families in New York's poorest neighborhoods. Over its 25 year history, Robin Hood has distributed more than $1.25 billion to hundreds of New York City-based soup kitchens, homeless shelters, schools, job training programs, and other vital services that give New York's neediest citizens the tools they need to build better lives for themselves and their families. In addition, Robin Hood's board of directors pays all administrative, fundraising and evaluation costs, so 100% of your donation goes directly to organizations helping New Yorkers in need.
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