The AT&T Issue Brief Library

Our issue briefs provide a summary of key topics. Download all issue briefs for a comprehensive overview, or use our issue brief builder to generate a customized PDF download with your selected topics. 

Philanthropy Highlights

Materiality Assessment Topics: Philanthropy and employee volunteerism | Global Reporting Initiative Standard Disclosures: GRI 413-1

Issue Summary

In the global economy, communities are increasingly interconnected and interdependent. As companies expand across the globe, innovation and resources can help address social and environmental challenges.

Our Position

We invest in communities around the world and we understand the importance of giving back to the communities in which we live and work.

2017 Key Performance Indicators
  • Amount contributed or directed through corporate-, employee-, social investment- and AT&T Foundation-giving programs:


Arts & Culture

Civic & Community


Health & Welfare








Our Action

We’re committed to supporting programs and projects that are making a meaningful impact in communities around the world. Our philanthropic investments include initiatives that promote success in school, drive innovation, support a well-educated workforce, empower women and communities, and respond to worldwide disasters and emergencies.

Our employees are also involved in serving their communities. In 2017, AT&T employees donated $35 million to more than 30,000 charities. The AT&T Foundation granted $4.4 million to charities recommended by employees. And through our annual Employee Pledge Campaign, the AT&T initiative to encourage employees to contribute to their favorite non-profits, our employees pledged $31.6 million in donations in 2017. Our employees also volunteered more than 1.78 million hours of time in community outreach activities—worth $42 million.1

Examples of our action include:

AT&T Aspire

AT&T invests in education and job training to create a skilled and diverse workforce that powers our company—and our country—for the future. Through the AT&T Aspire initiative, AT&T helps provide access to the education and training people need to get and keep good jobs. Since 2008, we’ve committed more than $450 million to programs to help millions of students in all 50 states and around the world. Our employees mentor students across the country to help them discover their career passions and potential.

We support:


  • Programs that prepare people for careers in technology, media and telecommunications;
  • Programs that have demonstrated success in increasing our nation’s high school graduation rate; and
  • Innovative tech solutions from our employees and our partners to tackle the challenges facing teachers, learners and the education system.


Program highlights include:


  • Launching the 3rd Aspire Accelerator class with the mission of supporting education-technology innovations that have the potential to help every student achieve a bright, successful future—exponentially and at scale. Across the 3 classes, 19 startup and non-profit participants have reached more than 12.2 million students and attracted more than $18.3 million in additional funding.
  • Contributing $2.25 million to Khan Academy to launch LearnStorm, a national learning challenge designed to equip students with the skills and mindsets they need to start the school year strong. LearnStorm combines Khan Academy’s thousands of free, standards-aligned exercises with new, limited-time-only incentives to engage, celebrate and reward every student—no matter their level. The initiative reached nearly 1 million students, 23,000 teachers, 13,000 schools and encouraged 90 million minutes of learning.
  • Working with Udacity to expand the Nanodegree program, which offers new educational pathways to industry-relevant skills online to prepare more people with the skills needed for high-demand tech jobs requiring technological expertise. There are now more than 30,000 learners taking nanodegree courses.
  • Contributing $300,000 to Per Scholas to support national technology training programs that serve more than 1,000 low-income, unemployed/underemployed individuals. The funding will support the growth of Per Scholas’ national IT training program as well as a new collaboration with General Assembly called CodeBridge, which prepares graduates for mid-skill IT and web development positions.
  • Supporting many organizations that help underrepresented students develop computer science and coding skills, including a $1.2 million contribution to Girls Who Code to support the expansion of the Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program and Clubs Program.
  • Contributing $2.5 million to help Communities In Schools serve thousands of additional students, provide college and career readiness and mentoring by AT&T employees, and continue CIS’ advancements in data collection, technology, research and evaluation.
  • Contributing $3.5 million to Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) to allow the national non-profit to add new schools and/or expand existing programs through its 34 JAG state affiliates with proven success records of keeping kids in school.


To learn more, please see our Supporting Education: AT&T Aspire issue brief.

Loyola University Chicago School of Law PROLAW – LLM and MJ in Rule of Law for Development

The Loyola PROLAW Center provides a unique training opportunity to prepare the next generation of leaders in their efforts to support the rule of law and anti-corruption back in their countries and communities. This 1-year Master of Law program trains students from around the world on critical techniques for strengthening the rule of law in government institutions. In recent years, AT&T has provided a scholarship for students from Mexico to attend the program, with a long-term vision to strengthen this priority for the country. In 2017, AT&T contributed $60,000 to support the PROLAW program that prepares students from Mexico and other developing countries to become effective rule-of-law advisors who can then lead change in their local communities and nations.

Construyendo a México Crecemos (CMC)

In 2017, AT&T awarded CMC $90,000 (USD) to establish 2 mobile classrooms at select sites in underserved boroughs in Mexico, enabling more than 1,400 students who are construction workers to complete a basic education—elementary school, junior high school and/or high school, and subsequently a specialization in a technical trade such as electricity, plumbing and other crafts—with the objective of enabling greater job opportunities for recipients. There are currently more than 30 million Mexican citizens who are either illiterate or have incomplete studies, and nearly 1.5 million of these citizens are construction workers.

Fundación Mexicana para la Educación, la Tecnologia y la Ciencia, A.C. (FUNED)

In 2017, AT&T awarded Fundación Mexicana para la Educación, la Tecnologia y la Ciencia, A.C. (FUNED) $150,000 (USD) over 24 months to assist 10 first-generation college students from Mexico to complete a master’s degree in engineering at universities across the globe. FUNED works with the Mexican National Council of Science and Technology to provide scholarships for Mexican students seeking a master’s degree at top-ranked universities abroad, specifically encouraging studies in graduate programs that directly contribute to the Mexican GDP.

Imagina, Innova e Incuba, A.C. as fiscal agent for iLab

In 2017, AT&T awarded $93,000 to Imagina, Innova e Incuba, A.C., as fiscal agent for iLab, over 12 months to support a fast-paced, entrepreneurial technology boot camp for 30 female college graduates from underserved areas of Mexico. Individuals participating in this program developed innovative technology startups to improve social and economic mobility in their communities. Since the program launched 4 years ago, iLab has graduated 324 female entrepreneurs from 7 cohorts across 74 cities and 22 states, resulting in the creation of 60 tech startups.


Laboratoria Coding Inc. serves Latin American women from low-income backgrounds in Chile, Peru and Mexico with the goal of assisting them in securing a tech career, which in turn transforms their lives. In 2017, AT&T awarded $100,000 (USD) over 12 months to Laboratoria to continue its work in Mexico and expand services to young women in Guadalajara. The program served more than 100 young women, helping them to graduate as front-end web developers and providing them job placement assistance upon graduation. More than 10 local companies participated in this initiative, working with Laboratoria to hire the graduating students.

Leer Nos Incluye a TODOS IAP

In 2017, AT&T awarded $78,500 (USD) to IBBY Mexico in collaboration with Leer Nos Incluye a TODOS IAP over 12 months to support almost 5,200 children and youth in Mexico, helping to develop their reading and comprehension skills with an emphasis on science and technology. IBBY Mexico has served children and youth in Mexico for more than 34 years, promoting reading comprehension with an emphasis on students with disabilities, indigenous migrants and groups living in extreme poverty.


In 2006, the Institute for Economic Empowerment of Women (IEEW) created PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS®, a business training and mentorship program for female entrepreneurs in Afghanistan and Rwanda. The program focuses on education and promotion of business and leadership skills among women to help build stable democracies. AT&T has been a major supporter of PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® since its inception, as it embodies many issues that are important to the company, most notably gender equality and the empowerment of women in business.

For more than 6 years, the Women of AT&T employee resource group and female executives have served as mentors and volunteers to share their experiences and encourage participants to pursue their career goals. As of 2017, PEACE THROUGH BUSINESS® has educated almost 700 female business owners from Rwanda and Afghanistan. After 11 years of educating female entrepreneurs, more than 80% of graduates are still in business today and employ around 13,500 of their fellow countrymen and women.

The Prince of Wales Foundation and The Prince’s Trust

In 2017, AT&T contributed $50,000 to the Prince of Wales Foundation to support programs that provide young adults in the United Kingdom with training, employment and micro-financing opportunities so that they can obtain meaningful careers and become financially self-sufficient. AT&T employees have also participated in the Prince’s Trust’s annual Palace to Palace cycle ride in the U.K. and, to date, have raised more than $21,000 along the way.

Disaster Response

In 2017, our Employee Disaster Relief Fund granted $2.4 million to more than 3,000 AT&T employees across the U.S. impacted by wildfires, flooding and hurricane disasters in California, Texas, Louisiana, Florida, Georgia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Additionally, the AT&T Pioneers Disaster Relief Fund granted more than $400,000 to almost 800 employees and retirees impacted by the disasters.

In 2017, the AT&T corporate and foundation disaster relief giving totaled more than $4 million and provided support for the American Red Cross, Redwood Credit Union Community Fund, United Way of Sonoma County, Team Rubicon, Greater Houston Community Fund and Volunteer Florida as they supported victims and communities affected by disasters as diverse as tornadoes; Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria; the Las Vegas shooting; and multiple wildfires in California.

AT&T funded Team Rubicon as it built out 20 crisis readiness units across 8 key U.S. cities that will result in 2,000 trained and qualified military/veteran and civilian volunteers to assist in disaster relief efforts following tornadoes, floods, hurricanes and other natural disasters in impacted communities.

Internationally, AT&T supported Mexico earthquake relief through Centro Nacional de Apoyo para Contingencias Epidemiológicas y Desastres, A.C. (CENACED), an international organization headquartered in Mexico that is focused on temporary emergency housing and longer-term restoration efforts for families impacted by disasters, and Puerto Rico recovery after Hurricane Irma through Juntos y Unidos. Our funding of Télécoms Sans Frontières supports international emergency telecommunications services in areas impacted by natural disasters and enables affected populations and relief workers to connect to critical resources.

AT&T is also a member of the Red Cross Disaster Responder Program, which ensures the Red Cross is on site immediately following a disaster and has the resources to assist those in need.

To learn more, please visit our Disaster Response issue brief.


1 The financial equivalent is determined by using $24.14 per volunteer hour, which is based on the 2016 industry standard from Independent Sector, a leading non-profit organization that determines the financial equivalent for a variety of volunteer initiatives.

Updated on: Nov 20, 2018