The Toyota Fund for Europe (TFfE) today announced the awarding of 18 grants totalling close to EUR600,000 to support community activities primarily focused on the environment.

The grants will launch 12 new national projects, 4 new projects in cooperation with Toyota plants and will continue to support the 2 Toyota Fund flagship projects: EcoDriving and Eco-Schools. The projects will be coordinated by partner NGOs and Toyota companies across 22 European countries.  

'The proposals that we received were of a very high standard and we are delighted to be able to provide the necessary financial support to these worthwhile projects. I would like to thank our NGO partners with whom we have been working for many years, thanks to them we can maximise the benefits to the local communities,' said Graham Smith, Chairman of the Toyota Fund for Europe, and Senior Vice-President of External Affairs at TME.

This year, Toyota decided to focus its support on environmental initiatives and both Toyota retailers and employees will play a significant role.

One of the new projects is the Toyota "Green Day" project, a national tree planting activity organised by Toyota Spain in close cooperation with the Felix Rodriguez de la Fuente Foundation. On 22 November 2009, Toyota retailers and their customers, together with the local communities, will plant 160.000 trees in 72 locations around Spain.

Another initiative came from Toyota Motor Industries Poland (TMIP) that will organize a waste management awareness campaign in their local community in early 2010. TMIP employees will organise, in close cooperation with the local municipalities, a number of awareness raising and training sessions.

TFfE will also continue to support the two flagship projects EcoDriving and Eco-Schools. In cooperation with partners from the Global Action Plan International network, retailers offer EcoDriving training sessions on Toyota simulators to existing customers and new contacts. Since the start of the programme, 1560 people have attended advanced EcoDriving workshops and 7200 people have taken a short EcoDriving training.

Since 2005, Toyota has been working with Eco-Schools in the Environment and Innovation programme, with the intention of developing innovative environmental projects in the local community.

TME established the Toyota Fund for Europe in 2002 to lead and partner with non-profit organisations on community activities that support the environment, technical education and road safety. Since its establishment, the fund has approved 119 grants across 60 projects, representing a total of €7,5 million in financial support. In 2009, 84% of grants were allocated to environmental projects, 13% to road safety projects and 3% to education projects. Eligible organisations are invited to submit project proposals to the Toyota Fund for Europe via their website: www.toyotafund.eu.