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11/02/2005

Press release from: State Farm Life Insurance Company

America's ''Good Neighbor'' Teams up with Recording Artist Clay Aiken's Bubel/Aiken Foundation to Promote Inclusive Education


(CSRwire) Bloomington, IL – Recording star Clay Aiken and State Farm Insurance® are making beautiful music by working in concert to help children of all levels of ability be more included in the educational system. State Farm has granted $1.5 million dollars to Clay’s foundation, The Bubel/Aiken Foundation to help develop a primary education curriculum focused on teaching social and life skills through service to children of all levels of ability. The State Farm-Bubel/Aiken team hopes that by teaching the language of diverse abilities, communities will be supported in viewing children with disabilities as contributors and active members of society.

"State Farm's three-year grant to The Bubel/Aiken Foundation will allow the development of a curriculum that provides ideas and strategies that will engage children of all abilities in giving back to their communities," says Kathy Payne, State Farm Community Alliances Assistant Director. "The curriculum will be developed in three stages with the first year of the project focused on kindergarten through fourth grade. As we move forward, we’ll be able to share ideas that connect well with State Farm’s focus on community development, safety and education.”

A key supporter of service-learning—a teaching strategy that connects real-world applications of learning to school curricula —State Farm has combined efforts with The Bubel/Aiken Foundation as a reflection of its strong commitment to education and to community partnerships that foster collaborative environments for all ages.

"The Bubel/Aiken Foundation will create innovative materials that embrace the philosophy of inclusion and support educators that work with children with and without disabilities. This curriculum will create awareness and change behaviors by educating individuals about what young people of ALL abilities are capable of doing,” says Kristy Barnes, Chief Operating Officer.

The Bubel/Aiken Foundation was created by Aiken in 2003 to serve children with developmental disabilities by creating, implementing, and funding programs of inclusion in the social, educational, recreational, vocational, and community settings. By combining his history of working with children with disabilities and his degree in special education, Clay has used his celebrity to further the causes of education and inclusion. In addition, schools, after-school and community programs, such as those held at various YMCA's, will be able to use this curriculum to educate young people who are eager to work collaboratively with their peers in a positive way.

About State Farm
State Farm® insures more cars than any other insurer in North America and is the leading U.S. home insurer. State Farm's 17,000 agents and 69,000 employees serve nearly 73 million auto, fire, life and health policies in the United States and Canada. State Farm also offers financial services products through State Farm Bank® . State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No.19 on the Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit statefarm.com® or in Canada statefarm.ca™.

About The Bubel/Aiken Foundation
The Bubel/Aiken Foundation provides services and financial assistance to promote the full integration of children with disabilities into the life environment of those without. The Foundation strives to create awareness about the diversity of individuals with disabilities and the possibilities that inclusion can bring. To learn more about The Bubel/Aiken Foundation or ways to get involved visit their Web site at www.bubelaikenfoundation.org .



For more information please contact:

Mia Jazo-Harris
mia.jazo-harris.sfdx@statefarm.com
(309) 766-5242
www.statefarm.com

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