SOURCE: Polycom, Inc.

December 12, 2007 08:30 ET

Global Nomads Group and Polycom Raise Awareness and Funding to Benefit Ugandan Students With "Agents of Change Program" Led by Actor Forest Whitaker

Innovative Video Conferencing Programs Help U.S. Students Make a Difference in Lives of Ugandan Students

PLEASANTON, CA and NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - December 12, 2007) - Global Nomads Group (GNG), an organization dedicated to fostering cross-cultural dialogue and understanding among youth, and Polycom, Inc. (NASDAQ: PLCM), the world's leading provider of unified collaborative solutions, today announced the initial results of the first "Agents of Change" initiative. The initiative is a global one-day event focused on raising awareness and funds for education, rehabilitation and youth support programs for the terrorized children of northern Uganda. "Agents of Change" is the first program centered on Project Uganda, an interactive video conferencing program that enabled U.S. students to learn about the challenges in Padibe, Uganda. Through the program, U.S. students connected with Ugandan students to learn first-hand about the daily conflicts they faced in the region.

Academy Award-winning actor Forest Whitaker actively took part in the final Project Uganda video conference last summer and shared his experiences in Uganda with North American students. Whitaker praised the students for their generosity and commitment to global change and reinforced the need for continued support and resources for the Ugandan community.

Since the initiative's inception last spring, funds raised by participating schools of Project Uganda were applied towards a biology lab for the Padibe Secondary School in Uganda, enabling local students to complete graduation requirements. Based on the funds raised to date, GNG has almost completed the lab project by building the walls and roof and providing desks, lab equipment and classroom supplies. Remaining funds will be given to educators at the school and will be used to purchase materials needed to support curriculum.

"My recent exposure to Ugandan culture, while researching for my role in 'The Last King of Scotland,' helped me to recognize the various levels of cultural conflict that exist in Ugandan communities today," Whitaker said. "Programs such as Project Uganda and the Agents of Change initiative are critical to exposing these adverse situations to students who are in positions to influence positive change for their Ugandan counterparts."

"At Padibe Secondary School in northern Uganda, completing a full biology course is required to complete a secondary school education," said Chris Plutte, co-founder of Global Nomads Group. "Without access to a lab within their own community, students have just two options: travel to distant communities where a lab is offered, or not graduate. With tremendous support from the participating North American schools, we can make the experience of graduation day a memorable reality for many Ugandan students."

Tallwood High School in Virginia Beach, Virginia is an example of the optimal response to the program. In the spirit of the Agents of Change program, a core group of 75 Tallwood High students formed the Ambassadors of Change program within the school and have actively implemented and organized school-wide fundraising events to support the Padibe School. Tallwood plans to implement one fundraising event per month with the goal of raising $10,000 by the end of the school year this June.

In the subsequent phases of the Agents of Change project, GNG and Polycom will continue working with schools in several regions throughout Uganda to ensure cultural and educational opportunities remain accessible to youth in the region. For more information on Project Uganda and the Agents of Change initiative, please visit

Additional information about Global Nomads Group and Polycom

Podcast about Global Nomads and Polycom Efforts

Polycom Video Collaboration Solutions:

About Global Nomads Group

Global Nomads Group ( is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to fostering cross-cultural dialogue and understanding among youth. Using videoconferencing and satellite communications technology, GNG moderates conferences between K-12 classes in different countries, organizes virtual lectures, and conducts remote broadcasts from the world's historical and cultural sites.

About Polycom

Polycom, Inc. is the worldwide leader in unified collaborative communications (UCC) that maximize the efficiency and productivity of people and organizations by integrating the broadest array of high definition video, wired and wireless voice, and content solutions to deliver the ultimate collaborative experience. Polycom's high quality, standards-based conferencing and collaboration solutions are easy to deploy and manage, as well as intuitive to use. Supported by an open architecture, they integrate seamlessly with leading telephony, workplace wireless telephony, and presence-based networks. With its market-driving technologies, best-in-class products, alliance partnerships, and world-class service, Polycom is the smart choice for organizations seeking proven solutions and a competitive advantage from on-demand communications and collaboration. For additional information, call 800-POLYCOM or visit the Polycom Web site at

Polycom and the Polycom logo are registered trademarks of Polycom in the U.S. and various countries. ©2007, Polycom, Inc. All rights reserved.

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Nicole Hegg
    VisiTechPR (for Polycom)
    303-752-3552 x.230
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