Foundation awards 12 grants totaling more than $250,000 to support scalable JA programs that help young people succeed in the global economy

Twelve JA (Junior Achievement) operations worldwide have won the 2014 MetLife Foundation 'Entrepreneurial' and 'Sowing the Seeds of Entrepreneurship' Awards. Both award categories focus on excellence, innovation and entrepreneurial approaches to program development that enable youth to own their economic future.

Eight JA operations won the MetLife Foundation Entrepreneurial Award, which includes $25,000 each for their innovative programs and processes that have been implemented with good results and strong potential for replication and adaptation. In addition, four JA operations won Sowing the Seeds of Entrepreneurship Awards of $10,000 each to advance promising, but untested program concepts.

JA and MetLife Foundation have been partnering since 2000 on the identification, recognition and funding of innovation by JA operations around the world and expanding selected programs to generate greater impact on the young people they serve through annual awards. Over the past 14 years, 83 Entrepreneurial Awards and 13 Sowing the Seeds of Entrepreneurship Awards have been given to 61 JA operations in 18 countries.

"Innovation and an entrepreneurial spirit are critical to achieving scale and increasing impact. With their diverse programs, all of the award-winning JA operations exemplify these traits and demonstrate their value in making a difference in the lives of millions of young people looking to build a secure future. Congratulations to JA and the 2014 award winners for their dedication and excellence," said Dennis White, ceo and president of MetLife Foundation.

"We are delighted with the 14-year role MetLife Foundation has played in supporting our ongoing efforts to cultivate creativity and innovation in JA programming, nurturing inspiration and the entrepreneurial spirit across the global 123-country JA network, and to drive greater impact for the young people we serve. This collaboration is rooted in continuous innovation, long-term commitment and compatibility of goals. Together we are working to enhance the future economic potential of young people around the world," said Sean Rush, President and CEO of JA Worldwide.

About MetLife Foundation 
MetLife Foundation was created in 1976 to continue MetLife's long tradition of corporate contributions and community involvement. Since its founding through the end of 2013, MetLife Foundation has provided more than $600 million in grants and $70 million in program-related investments to organizations addressing issues that have a positive impact in their communities. Today, the Foundation is dedicated to advancing financial inclusion, committing $200 million over the next five years to help build a secure future for individuals and communities around the world. To learn more about MetLife Foundation, visit