AVON, Ohio – On March 24, a class of 17 women celebrated their graduation from the Instituto de Capacitación para el Trabajo del Estado de Coahuila (ICATEC), a local vocational training center in Acuña, Mexico. Besides their graduation, the women also celebrated empowerment: They have gained the knowledge and skills allowing them to pursue a career in culinary arts techniques.
While the vocational program isn’t new, a major benefactor behind the effort is. Coursework for the third and most recent cohort of students was sponsored by a $6,230 grant from the Bendix Foundation, marking its inaugural commitment to continue the pioneering work started three years ago by Knorr-Bremse Global Care North America Inc. (KBGCNA).
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Both philanthropic organizations have ties to Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems LLC (Bendix), the North American leader in the design, development, and manufacture of active safety, air management, and braking solutions for commercial vehicles.
The Bendix Foundation is a philanthropic organization managed by Bendix’s Acuña operation, focusing on community enrichment efforts in the region. Meanwhile, KBGCNA is the U.S.-based arm of a philanthropic entity operated by Knorr-Bremse, based in Munich, Germany. Knorr-Bremse is the global market leader for braking systems and a leading supplier of other safety-critical rail and commercial vehicle systems.
KBGCNA centers its investments on initiatives supporting youth, education, and underprivileged populations within the surrounding communities of Knorr-Bremse’s three largest North American companies: Avon, Ohio-based Bendix; Westminster, Maryland-based Knorr Brake Company; and Watertown, New York-based New York Air Brake LLC.
Among these operations is Bendix’s manufacturing complex in Acuña, where it has held a significant presence for more than 30 years. As such, KBGCNA supported the creation of ICATEC’s vocational and empowerment program with a $35,000 grant to the training center in 2020.
“The women’s empowerment and training program that ICATEC created with support from KBGCNA has had a tremendous impact on our community, with close to 80 students graduating from the program as members of its first two cohorts,” said Maria Gutierrez, president of KBGCNA and Bendix senior director, environmental, social, and governance (ESG). “The Bendix Foundation is grateful to KBGCNA for laying a strong foundation for this much-needed program. We see the value it’s brought to the Acuña community, and we’re proud to continue this effort.”
The entire announcement can be viewed by clicking HERE.