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Community Development

Sustaining Communities

Our third focus area encompasses our efforts to enhance the quality of life in our communities around the world.

In 2020, GM focused its community development efforts on workforce readiness, economic prosperity and innovative placemaking. We recognize the importance to not only equip individuals with the essential skills to gain secure employment in a competitive economy but also empower them with the tools to advance economically in communities that positively impact their well-being.

Last year, we engaged with dozens of nonprofits, impacting an estimated 65,000 individuals.

35
small businesses
to receive support in
Flint, MI, and Buffalo, NY
6,400
free rides to alleviate
transportation barriers
1,300
women of color to receive
entrepreneurship education

ValleyCAN

Committed to reducing air emissions in California’s San Joaquin Valley, Valley CAN is working with local community colleges to promote green jobs skilling through technical automotive programs. In a region with the worst air quality in the U.S., an 11% unemployment rate and 16% of the population living in poverty, there is an abundant need for well-paying, high-tech green jobs advancing GM’s vision of an all-electric and zero emissions future.

That’s why we have aligned specific areas of focus to the needs of Detroit and its residents. In the last five years alone, GM has invested more than $50 million with local nonprofits that are delivering lasting change. In 2020, we funded 57 projects that will impact an anticipated 296,100 individuals.

The roadmap below highlights some of the nonprofits we work with to help make Detroit a great place to learn, work and thrive.
Click to reveal more information

LEARN

WORK

THRIVE

LEARN

Forgotten Harvest & Gleaners

Reducing food insecurity and promoting classroom readiness by providing over 1 million pounds of food for Detroit students and their families.

Technovation

Introducing artificial intelligence concepts and technologies to families through hands-on building challenges and projects to create solutions to community problems.

Detroit Children’s Fund

Making high-potential investments to expand successful schools, improve lower-performing schools, and discover and develop talented educators so that every child in Detroit can receive an excellent education.

Get Schooled Detroit

Making the path to post-secondary education more accessible for low-income high school students by “gamifying” the college-prep process.

WORK

Beyond Basics

Providing young adults and families with world-class literacy development, GED and high school diploma prep, resume and essay writing, art and culture enrichment and more, housed inside the Durfee Innovation Society and area high schools like Central High.

Ride United

Providing no- or low-cost, on-demand rides to mitigate transportation barriers so residents can access needed resources, obtain and maintain employment, and participate in supportive programs.

human-I-T

Shrinking the digital divide through increased access to technology, internet and digital skills training.

NeighborHUB

Funding annual neighborhood-focused projects to empower residents to affect change in their neighborhoods through a physical presence and innovative community programming.

THRIVE

Detroit Riverfront Conservancy

Promoting vibrancy and community in the heart of downtown Detroit through support of activities that bring residents and visitors to the riverfront, which was recently named USA TODAY's #1 river walk in the U.S.

Cody Rouge Neighborhood

Deeply engaging with Quicken Loans, DTE Energy and the Skillman Foundation to strengthen the Cody Rouge neighborhood in a first-of-its-kind collaboration utilizing financial and volunteer support.

Michigan Science Center

Bringing STEM careers to life for 4th-8th grade girls across metro Detroit with hands-on learning, mentoring and online programs through the Center's STEMinista Project.

In addition to our three focus areas, we address community needs at the local plant level as well as through employee volunteerism.

COVID-19 Response

When the COVID-19 pandemic took the world by surprise in 2020, General Motors acted swiftly to aid the global fight. In the U.S., we quickly transitioned several assembly lines to manufacture ventilators, building 30,000 in 154 days for the federal government. Across our South American operations in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, facilities mobilized to repair ventilators for hospital use, loan GM fleet vehicles to local nonprofits, and donate time and resources to educational organizations and food banks. For example, in Argentina, GM employees volunteered to check in on older adults in need of food, medicine and other necessities. After contacting individuals by phone and learning their needs, city officials then delivered supplies using Chevrolet vehicles on loan from GM.

Our global facilities also produced face shields and gowns, as well as millions of masks in China, the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Brazil. Beyond our delivery of personal protective equipment, GM and its employees made donations to nonprofits on the front lines, including $715,000 to the Chinese Red Cross Foundation and more than $1.6 million to organizations in Canada.

GM Community Impact Grants

GM’s commitment to our communities helps establish a legacy of trust with key individuals, groups and organizations while demonstrating interest and accountability to community concerns and issues. The Community Impact Grants program, now in its 11th year, enables GM facilities to support neighbors through local nonprofit partnerships. In 2020, GM plants and facilities provided more than $2 million in grant funding to more than 150 nonprofits that will impact an estimated 110,000 people. Examples include:

  • Flint Operations—$20,000 to the Neighborhood Engagement Hub to establish a community tool shed, allowing residents to borrow tools to help reduce city blight.
  • Arlington Assembly—$25,000 to the University of Texas, which helped 375 minority high school students prepare for the math portion of the SAT.
  • Tonawanda Engine—$10,000 to Buffalo Area Engineering Awareness for Minorities, which enabled 100 children to participate in a Saturday STEM Academy to learn more about engineering careers.

Community Support in China

Employees of our SAIC-GM-Wuling joint venture remain committed to helping communities through partnerships that meet basic needs, access quality education and pursue rewarding careers. Recent initiatives include the Promise of a Glass of Water campaign, which encouraged individuals and businesses to conserve water. Volunteers also built wells and installed water purification equipment at eight schools in rural China, helping provide drinking water to more than 2,000 children.

To promote education and career development, the company has a book donation and library program for rural children, with over 15,000 books donated since 2018. In 2020, we funded scholarships for three university students and three middle school students from disadvantaged families. GM China employees also visited the Shanghai office of Junior Achievement (JA) China for a special live broadcast to young university talent. Employees held a panel discussion where they described their daily work and answered questions about career growth.

GM Student Corps

Another signature program is GM Student Corps, a paid summer internship program for high school students in underresourced Michigan communities that offers community service, life-skills training, college readiness and team building.

This program has engaged 1,340 high school and college students since 2013. Due to the pandemic, the 2020 program was limited to 15 college students who engaged virtually in personal and professional development, deep dives into GM functional areas and design thinking challenges.

teamGM Cares

From manufacturing and distributing PPE and tutoring students online, to leading neighborhood cleanups and utilizing unique skills to improve nonprofit operations, the global employee volunteer force, known as teamGM Cares, remained engaged in their communities in 2020. To help commemorate a decade of teamGM Cares in 2020, the Corporate Giving team launched an online resource to showcase how the company invests in our communities and how employees could get involved in a variety of activities throughout the year.

teamGM Cares in 2020

Our global employee volunteer force encourages employees to roll up their sleeves and help improve our communities around the world.

15,190
employee volunteers
21
states and
10
countries
115,610
volunteer hours
valued at
$1 million
for nearly 300 nonprofits

Employee Participation

Employee Participation
2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
12,167 15,445 17,648 18,880 15,190