In 2012, we changed our fourth focus area from Community Celebrations to Hometown Giving, providing us the flexibility to better address common and vital societal issues in our communities. Doing so has enabled DPS to enhance our United Way partnership and our volunteer and giving efforts by leveraging United Way’s broad network to make a larger difference.
The commitment and generosity of our employees enabled us to raise almost $2.2 million for United Way in 2012, a 25 percent increase over the prior year. This amount included our dollar-for-dollar corporate match and surpassed our original $2 million campaign fundraising goal. By enhancing our technology we improved the efficiency and effectiveness of our campaign. These investments in our giving and volunteer activities have helped reinforce our role as a good corporate steward and earned us a spot within the United Way Worldwide Global Leadership Program, a distinguished group of 100 major national and global companies committed to improving lives, helping families and building opportunities to strengthen communities.
Bringing greater focus to our hometown volunteer efforts, we extended our ACTION Nation Week activities to encompass an entire month beginning in 2011, and the effort continues to gain momentum. In 2012, employees completed 50 volunteer projects, contributing more than 3,300 volunteer hours and earning $50,000 in matching grants for different local United Way chapters, a 43 percent increase in the number of projects completed from the prior year. Under the ACTION Nation Month umbrella, employees completed ACTIONeer projects and qualified for $1,000 grants to local nonprofits of their choice. Worthy organizations receiving these grants included Wish for Our Heroes in San Antonio, Texas, and MedShare in San Leandro, Calif., an organization dedicated to improving health care through recovery and redistribution of medical supplies.
Furthering our dedication to doing good things, in 2013, DPS is celebrating our five-year anniversary as a publicly traded company with an employee volunteer initiative called the Give Five for Five Challenge, benefitting the hometowns that have supported us throughout the years. Our employees will volunteer together, donating five service hours per employee to a local nonprofit. Our goal is to contribute 40,000 hours and reach our 2015 volunteerism goal one year early.