Prudential Retirement and the Prudential Foundation gave about $800,000 in 2008 to the retirement unit’s headquarters city.

The retirement unit, a subsidiary of Prudential Financial Inc., Newark, N.J., and the foundation, a Prudential affiliate, gave the donations to support education, economic development, arts and cultural programs in and around Hartford, Prudential says.

One major recipient, the Hartford Education Foundation, is using $150,000 in Prudential Retirement and Prudential Foundation grants to promote community involvement in school reform efforts.