March_2006_091Operation HOPE was selected as one of the global partners and highlighted at a special press conference on March 31 2006, were the 2005 results as well as details around the 2006 CGI session in NYC on same were announced. HOPE reported on its progress towards launching an initiative in partnership with NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE) aimed at providing financial literacy training for 5,000 low-wealth high school students in Harlem.

New York, NY (PRWEB) April 21, 2006 -- As a direct result of Operation HOPE’s involvement last year at the inaugural Clinton Global Initiative meeting, HOPE was selected as one of the global partners and highlighted at a special press conference on March 31 2006, announcing 2005 results as well as details around the 2006 CGI session in NYC on same. HOPE reported on its progress towards launching an initiative in partnership with NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE) aimed at providing financial literacy training for 5,000 low-wealth high school students in Harlem.

"There is poverty all over the globe, including right here in the United States. Hurricane Katrina showed that to the world,” noted John Hope Bryant Operation HOPE Founder and CEO. “I commend President Clinton for having the leadership to take on many of the world's problems through his Global Initiative, calling for action, both here and abroad. Right here in New York with the support of NYSE and through our “Banking on Our Future” program, we are hoping to break the cycle of poverty by bringing financial literacy and silver rights to Harlem. We are honored to support his vision here and join him in this call for action."

The NYSE Diversity Council and Operation HOPE, Inc. will launch the program this month, adopting a high school in Harlem with a blitz of teaching activity. Thirty NYSE Group employees under the NYSE Community Volunteers program will go into classrooms and educate low-wealth students in the Harlem area, using their technical expertise to provide information on financial management and investment that will enable youth to make solid choices and take immediate responsibility for their economic well-being through the “Banking on Our Future” program. “Banking on Our Future” is Operation HOPE’s award-winning financial literacy program designed to orient school-aged children on financial responsibility and is bolstered by a $75,000 donation from the NYSE Foundation.

At the gathering in New York, former President Bill Clinton announced the details for the 2006 Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) and provided updates on commitments from CGI 2005. Bill Gates, First Lady Laura Bush, French President Jacques Chirac, Rupert Murdoch, Richard Branson, Warren Buffett, and hundreds of other leaders will be joining President Clinton this September to discuss the four focus areas of the meeting: Poverty Alleviation; Religious & Ethnic Conflict Reconciliation; Global Energy Solutions; and Global Public Health. Global Public Health is a new focus area at this year’s meeting in September.

“The 2005 Clinton Global Initiative succeeded beyond my expectations, and I am looking forward to our 2006 meeting,” said President Clinton. “We had nearly 300 commitments valued in excess of $2.5 billion dollars from our inaugural meeting and I am confident that we can expand upon this at our meeting in September.”

During the meeting, President Clinton called upon some of those who pledged commitments in 2005 to report on their progress. John Hope Bryant of Operation HOPE, Nancy Kete of EMBARQ, Dr. Bruce Charash of the NGO Doc to Dock, and Maria Otero of ACCION, each reported on their 2005 commitments, their progress, and future goals.

The meeting also saw the pledge of the first commitment for the 2006 Clinton Global Initiative. Citing Citigroup's commitment to use their global reach and local expertise to expand access to financial services and strengthen communities and markets around the world, Ajay Banga, Chairman and CEO, Global Consumer Group International, Citigroup, pledged $5.5 million to honor micro-entrepreneurship in 25 countries with the goal of empowering two million people with the financial tools they need to enrich their lives.

“My goal for CGI was to bring together a select group energized and highly accomplished individuals to join me in committing to action,” concluded President Clinton. “There is a great deal we can do, and we just have to put our minds together and commit to take action to change our world for the better. The Clinton Global Initiative is a way to achieve this, and I am confident CGI is leading to meaningful and lasting change in the world.”

New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg lauded the Clinton Global Initiative for the positive impact it had on New York City in 2005 and expressed his excitement for CGI 2006. The Clinton Global Initiative, through hosting its annual meeting, generates $11 million for New York City each year. The 2006 Clinton Global Initiative will take place September 20-22, 2006 in New York City at the Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers.

About the Clinton Global Initiative
The Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) is a non-partisan catalyst for action, bringing together a community of global leaders to devise and implement innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing challenges. Each September, CGI convenes a meeting for global leaders including heads of state, non-profit organizations, and business leaders to discuss challenges facing the world today. President Clinton’s vision in bringing together this group is to merge ideas from both the public and private sectors to devise a plan to identify and implement solutions to major problems facing our world. The forum coincides with the opening of the General Assembly of the United Nations and will take place September 20-22, 2006. For more information about the initiative visit www.clintonglobalinitiative.org.

About NYSE Group, Inc.
NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE:NYX) operates two securities exchanges: the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) and NYSE Arca (formerly known as the Archipelago Exchange, or ArcaEx®, and the Pacific Exchange). NYSE Group is a leading provider of securities listing, trading and market data products and services. The NYSE is the world’s largest and most liquid cash equities exchange. NYSE Arca is the first open, all-electronic stock exchange in the United States and has a leading position in trading exchange-traded funds and exchange-listed securities. NYSE Regulation, an independent not-for-profit subsidiary, regulates member organizations through the enforcement of marketplace rules and federal securities laws. For more information on NYSE Group, go to: www.nyse.com.

About Operation HOPE, Inc.
Operation HOPE, Inc. is America's first nonprofit social investment bank and a national provider of financial literacy and economic empowerment programs. It works to bring self-sufficiency and a sustained spirit of revitalization to America's inner-city communities. HOPE Coalition America, Banking on Our Future, and neighborhood HOPE Centers serve as the three key programs which provide the foundation for HOPE’s financial literacy delivery system. To date, HOPE has created more than 800 new homeowners and small business owners, more than $125 milli on in funded loans, and more than $240 million in commitments for homeownership and small business loans from their 250 bank and corporate partners. At the core of HOPE’s mission to eradicate poverty and empower the wealthless is a movement to establish “silver rights” or the right to financial literacy, access to capital, and equality of opportunity for the underserved. HOPE and its programs can be found online at www.operationhope.org.

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