Williamsburg Community Foundation Awards $69,475 in Fall Grants

October 30, 2019, Williamsburg, Va. –  Thanks to the generosity of hundreds of local donors, the Williamsburg Community Foundation awarded $69,475 in competitive grants to 18 organizations serving the community (see entire list below). The grants were awarded today at a luncheon for recipients and community members, which was generously sponsored by the Atlantic Wealth Management Group of UBS (Norfolk), and Williamsburg Insurance Associates.

These 18 grants represent investments in the Foundation’s priority areas: Environment & Conservation, Children & Young Adults, Health & Community Wellness, Senior Services and Arts & Culture. Some of the grants are made possible by generous local donors who have contributed over many years to the Community Endowment, while other grant dollars come from funds specifically earmarked for projects in a certain field of interest that aligns with the Foundation’s priority areas, such as the Arts & Culture Fund. In addition to the Community Endowment and Field of Interest grants, four grants were made possible by the Benjamin R. Altshuler Memorial Fund for Transportation, and one grant was provided by the Williamsburg Fund for Women & Girls.

The grants awarded today span a wide variety of projects and services that will benefit the greater Williamsburg community.

A grant to the James River Association will allow the group to partner with local schools to provide hands-on environmental education.

“We are excited to work with all nine Williamsburg-James City County elementary schools, to introduce our “Paint out Pollution” education” said Nat Draper, JRA’s Education Manager. “Thanks to this grant, students will learn how storm drains can be direct impacts on our watershed.”

Foundation grants will also address the issue of hunger and homelessness.

“Williamsburg House of Mercy’s Community Kitchen serves individuals and families from many different walks of life and is the fruit of hundreds of volunteers and community supporters,” said House of Mercy’s Nicole Lancour.

“The Williamsburg Community Foundation grant will help keep nutritious meals in front of our hungry neighbors and welcome them around the table of a caring community that can make the future more stable.”

Of the nearly $70,000 in grants, $19,525 are made possible by individual donors who chose to support the Foundation’s competitive grants. During each grant round, the Foundation invites its donor-advised fund holders to support competitive grants, since there are often many more requests for funding than can be fulfilled by the Foundation’s Community Endowment alone.

“WCF plays a unique role that many people may not be aware of,” said Nancy Sullivan, Executive Director of the WCF. “We offer individual donors the chance to support some of the competitive grant projects that they may be passionate about. In this grant round, we were thrilled to receive nearly $20,000 in additional grantmaking funds from generous local donors – that makes a big difference for these nonprofits who want to start new initiatives or build on already established programs.”

The Foundation awards competitive grants twice a year. The next opportunity to apply for funding is for spring 2020, with a deadline of January 15, 2019. All application materials and guidelines can be found at WilliamsburgCommunityFoundation.org.

Grants from the Community Endowment

The Arc of Greater Williamsburg
Wheels4Work will provide people with developmental disabilities the training needed for specific jobs, assistance in applying for meaningful employment, and a call center to organize rides for reliable transportation to and from the employee’s job sites.

Avalon Center
Funds will help upgrade the emergency shelter’s living units for women and children fleeing domestic and sexual violence. Many of the 20+ year-old buildings and systems now require upgrade and repair.

Colonial CASA (Court-Appointed Special Advocates)
This summer enrichment program enables CASA children (who are in the foster care system) to begin building self-esteem and enhance or sustain learning.  Self-esteem occurs through positive interactions with peers and adults as they engage in sports and skill-building activities.

Dreamcatchers Therapeutic Riding Center
This funding will be used to purchase a Parma Company Arena Groomer to properly maintain the footing for the indoor and outdoor arenas of the therapeutic riding facility, making it safer for humans and horses.

Foundation for Rehabilitation Equipment & Endowment
F.R.E.E. of Williamsburg is committed to refurbishing and recycling gently used medical mobility equipment for those in need. This grant will be used to support the growing demands of the elderly who need this equipment.

Hope Family Village
Hope Family Village will purchase furnishings and equipment for a newly acquired office space. The mission of Hope Family Village is to help those who struggle to lead stable, independent lives due to mental illness.

James River Association
4th grade Williamsburg-James City County Public Schools students will learn about the effects of pollution on waterways, risks of storm drains, and benefits of native species to ecosystems through classroom sessions and outdoor hands-on activities.

Peninsula YMCA
The 7th Grade Initiative program provides opportunities for development of leadership skills, fitness, and sports as well as opportunities to socialize with peers in a safe, supervised environment.

Tidewater Classical Guitar
Funding will support a classical guitar concert series, which features the world’s most accomplished artists. Additionally, these artists perform outreach and education activities, such as performances at schools and masterclasses.

Virginia Capital Trail
The Trail Ambassadors Program is a group of dedicated volunteers who serve as the “eyes and ears” of the Capital Trail.  This funding will support them as they lead trail clean-ups, report maintenance issues, and give information to visitors on the Trail.

William & Mary Global Film Festival
Through this grant, two filmmakers will be brought to the festival for a Q&A session after a screening of their films and offer professional workshops open to both W&M students and the general public.

Williamsburg Area Faith in Action
Breaktime is a respite program that provides a safe environment for seniors with early Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. This allows seniors to enjoy group activities while their caregivers get a much-needed break.

Williamsburg House of Mercy
This grant will continue the much-needed support of Our Community Kitchen, a daily soup kitchen available to anyone in need of a warm lunch.

Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra
Five internationally-acclaimed guest artists will rehearse and perform with the Orchestra, then teach a free master class for local students during their stay.

Grants from the Benjamin R. Altshuler Memorial Fund for Transportation

Child Development Resources
CDR provides transportation for families to attend weekly developmental playgroups and parent support groups when needed. Parents participate in parenting classes and group support while their child receives developmental activities in a specialized, play-based program.

Peninsula Agency on Aging
The Peninsula RIDES program provides transportation to seniors with reduced ability to transport themselves or who lack other transportation resources.

Williamsburg Area Faith in Action
Funding will aid in door-to-door transportation needs for seniors who are 60 and older and reside in the greater Williamsburg area. This service is free of charge to qualifying individuals.

Williamsburg-James City County Public Schools
Partnering with local agencies, this program will provide an enriched summer camp experience for homeless and precariously-housed elementary students. This grant will help with transportation to and from the camps.

Grants from the Williamsburg Fund for Women & Girls

Fear 2 Freedom
This grant will help Fear2Freedom provide 66 Icare Kits to victims of sexual violence. This program also raises awareness about sexual assault among the many college students assembling the kits.

Generously sponsored by: