The idea to establish a foundation began in 1989, when a group of Mitsubishi Electric executives decided that, after 20 years of doing business in the US, it was time to give back to the community. The 15 executives each put $100 on the table toward the foundation. By February 1991, that $1500 had grown to a $15 million endowment through contributions from the Mitsubishi Electric Corporation of Japan and its US subsidiaries, and the Mitsubishi Electric America Foundation was launched.
The Foundation's national mission of serving young people with disabilities has not changed over the years, and its priorities remain independence, productivity, and community inclusion. More than $9 million have been invested in organizations ranging from the American Foundation for the Blind to the Girl Scouts of the USA. MEAF invests in National Grant projects that promote the full inclusion of youth of all abilities in the areas of education, career preparation, recreation, volunteering and the arts. The Foundation also matches the donations of Mitsubishi Electric companies and their employees through Company Grant programs helping to support youth in the communities where our employees live and work.
While it is impossible to precisely measure the human impact of these investments, we estimate they have helped thousands of children to live fuller, more productive lives.
Numbers count, and multiplier effects are an important consideration in making grant decisions. But the Foundation also focuses on the individual and the value of each person's life. In the spirit of the Starfish story, we seek to make a difference, one starfish at a time.
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