FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  January 16, 2013 

GREENVILLE YOUTH ADVISORY COUNCIL AWARDS OVER $49,000 IN GRANTS FOR 2013

(Greenville) – The Greenville Youth Advisory Council (GYAC) and the Greenville Area Community Foundation (GACF) Board of Trustees are pleased to announce grants awarded for 2013.

The GYAC, which includes 25 youth grant makers in the 7th through the 12th grades at Greenville, awarded grants totaling $49,364 to nine organizations.   Grants are awarded from the W. K. Kellogg Youth Fund, housed within the Greenville Area Community Foundation.

One of the more significant grants, an $8,276 award went to the Greenville Recreation Department to support a youth triathlon, and clinics for boys and girls ages 7 to 15 to prepare the youth for the competition.  The youth event will run in conjunction with the June 2013 adult triathlon. 

Another large grant for $6,957.50 was awarded to the Spectrum Health Foundation to fund a new driving simulator for the United Lifestyles Project Save Our Children Against Drunk Driving program.  The program is a proactive approach to preventing distracted teenage driving for high school students in the Montcalm County and surrounding areas.

The Mid-Michigan District Health Department received a grant to build a pavilion and install a fence at the Greenville Trailside Community Garden, which would provide the garden with a secure water source and protection from wildlife.

Special Olympics Michigan received a grant to help pay for the cost of ski rentals for approximately 107 Greenville k-12 students in the Special Education Cognitively Impaired program.

The Community Hope Christian Counseling & Mental Health Center will once again be able to offer a substance abuse education and prevention group at the Greenville Middle School because of a $2,200 grant.  And the Montcalm County Suicide Prevention Coalition will continue its good work through a grant to the Montcalm Area Intermediate School District to support youth-based suicide prevention groups.

A $3,000 grant to the Greenville Community Center will fund a comprehensive student production of Alice in Wonderland, Jr. to middle school and high school students to foster self-confidence, academic success and social development.

Opportunities Unlimited for the Blind will offer a unique program that teams Greenville youth with blind or visually impaired youth to run in the Fifth Third River Bank Run in Grand Rapids in May, because of a $660 grant.

Many grants were awarded to Greenville Public Schools teachers and administrators, including a $2,500 grant for a Be Nice program at the high school that will bring professional trainers in to work with a large group of students and staff to improve school climate and reduce bullying; a GHS Clothes Closet grant will fund the purchase of new clothing and hygiene products for any high school students who are in need; and a grant to Greenville High School teacher Tina Green will allow students with cognitive impairments the opportunity to increase their knowledge and understanding of history through real-life experiences at Greenfield Village, the Museum and Factory Tour. 

Greenville High School’s H.O.N.K (Helping Out New Kids) group received funding for equipment and supplies to support their efforts once again this year, and Greenville’s Girls & Boys Basketball program benefit from a grant to purchase a new shooting machine. 

Two additional grants went to Greenville Public Schools staff.  Linda Van Houten, Director of Student Services, was awarded a $2,000 grant to provide access to resources for staff and other students to work with students with autism including training videos, data collection and professional staff consultation.  An exciting new program, “Project BLOOM” will be offered at Walnut Hills Elementary with a grant to purchase resources and supplies to teach and encourage 4th and 5th grade girls to deal with the daily pressures they face.

The GYAC also helps to sponsor the Education Foundation of Greenville’s (EFG) Yellow Jacket Challenge event.