MILWAUKEE, May 31, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Healthy, educated and compassionate people make a community thrive. But for many within the community, limited access to life's most basic needs detracts from their quality of life. That's why Northwestern Mutual is pleased to announce a program that will lead to improvement in three Milwaukee neighborhoods.

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Northwestern Mutual, through its Foundation, is committing more than $725,000 in grants to nonprofits in Amani and Metcalfe Park, two north side neighborhoods, and to the south side neighborhood of Muskego Way. The company is joining federal support that builds resources in both the Amani and Metcalfe Park neighborhoods.

Building and supporting neighborhoods in Milwaukee to achieve community-driven change is a key component of this initiative for Northwestern Mutual. The program creates welcoming, safe and healthy neighborhoods through strong nonprofit partners and the leadership of residents. Each community is collaborating on measures to establish the effectiveness of the program over the coming year.

"We are committed to directing resources that improve the quality of life for more than 70,000 people who live in these neighborhoods," said John Kordsmeier, president, Northwestern Mutual Foundation. "There is a need for access to programs and support systems that increase the pride of all residents and stimulates positive change in their neighborhoods."

One new project resulting from the initiative is a program with Hunger Task Force, which has run food banks across Milwaukee for the past 40 years. The Auer Oasis project will bring daily meal services into the Amani neighborhood at Auer Elementary School during the summer months. Because of a shortage of grocery and convenience stores in the neighborhood, the grant covers all costs to provide access to food for many families in the Amani neighborhood.

Auer Oasis is a partnership between Hunger Task Force, Northwestern Mutual Foundation, Milwaukee Public Schools, Milwaukee County Parks, COA Goldin Center and the Dominican Center for Women.

"Northwestern Mutual approached Hunger Task Force to provide meals in an area that has been historically overlooked," said Sherrie Tussler, executive director, Hunger Task Force. "Our partnership will change the lives of those in Amani by providing nutritious meals to children and their families in need, which impacts all other facets of daily life."

The program will support additional projects focused on academic achievement opportunities, community building and leadership, and safety. Organizations receiving support include:

  • Dominican Center (lead agency for Amani)
  • Next Door Foundation (lead agency for Metcalfe Park)
  • Bread of Healing Clinic
  • Boys & Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee
  • COA Youth & Family Centers
  • Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin
  • Fondy Food Center
  • Groundwork Milwaukee
  • Hunger Task Force
  • IMPACT 211
  • Journey House
  • Legal Aid Society
  • Local Initiative Support Corporation (LISC)
  • Safe & Sound
  • Salvation Army
  • Sojourner Family Peace Center
  • United Community Center.

About the Northwestern Mutual Foundation
The mission of the Northwestern Mutual Foundation – the largest corporate foundation in the state of Wisconsin – is to build strong, vibrant communities that serve as a legacy to future generations. The Foundation's giving is designed to create an impact on the communities where the company's employees and financial representatives live and work. In fiscal year 2013, the Foundation will contribute $16.9 million to nonprofit organizations across the country.

About Northwestern Mutual
Northwestern Mutual is the marketing name for The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company – Milwaukee, WI and its subsidiaries (Northwestern Mutual) – among the "World's Most Admired" life insurance companies in 2013 according to FORTUNE® magazine – has helped clients achieve financial security for more than 156 years. As a mutual company with $1.4 trillion of life insurance protection in force, Northwestern Mutual has no shareholders. The company focuses solely and directly on its clients and seeks to deliver consistent and dependable value to them over time.  Northwestern Mutual and its subsidiaries offer a holistic approach to financial security solutions including: life insurance, long-term care insurance, disability insurance, annuities, investment products, and advisory products and services. Subsidiaries include Northwestern Mutual Investment Services, LLC, broker-dealer, registered investment adviser, member FINRA and SIPC; the Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company, limited purpose federal savings bank; and Northwestern Long Term Care Insurance Company; and Russell Investments.

SOURCE Northwestern Mutual