Greenville Area Community Foundation and Education Foundation of Greenville Award Spring Grants

New programs, new equipment and new opportunities for children in the Greenville Public School (GPS) district were made possible this April and May because of the combined efforts and resources of the Greenville Area Community Foundation (GACF) and the Education Foundation of Greenville (EFG).  Over $140,000 in grant funding from the GACF and EFG will enhance the education of GPS students for the 2014-15 school year  

The GACF awarded grants from the Sagendorf Education Fund, the Sagendorf Opportunities for Success Fund, the Ray J. & Mary G. Tower Family Fund, the Catherine Stall & June Motley Fund, and the Carl Barberi Caring for Kids Fund.  In total, over $249,000 was awarded to seven organizations with $127,829 going directly to Greenville Public Schools.    

The largest grant, $90,000, was awarded to GPS for the Chinese Language/Culture Program that will be offered again this fall at Walnut Hills Elementary, Greenville Middle School and High School. This is the third year now that the GACF has aided in funding this program.   This year’s grant allows the district to expand the program by adding a second grade teacher at Walnut Hills and two Teacher Trainees to support the three immersion classes and the elective classes at the Middle and High schools. ”Greenville Area Community Foundation has been a key player in the successful implementation of our Chinese Language and Culture program here at GPS,” said Assistant Superintendent Diane Brissette. “In addition to the very generous annual grant amounts, the counsel and support of GACF Board members has been invaluable in helping us develop and communicate our vision.  Thanks so much, GACF, for helping us get started on a sustainable program which will reflect positively on our greater Greenville community for years to come!” she added.   

GPS received another large grant, $11,727, for 30 iPads for use in Kindergarten through 2nd grade classrooms at Cedar Crest.  A $7,398 grant will replace old, unusable kilns in the art rooms at both the Middle and High School to allow them to provide students with the opportunity to use clay as a media.  Additional grants to GPS included iPads for 1st and 2nd grade classrooms at Lincoln Heights Elementary, a grant to purchase school supplies for under-resourced Greenville Public School children, funds to purchase non-fiction books for the Cedar Crest Literacy Library, six document cameras for teachers at Lincoln Heights Elementary, a grant to provide “Welcome Packets” for homeless families in the district, and funding for a set of four cube chairs for the Early Childhood special education classroom at Cedar Crest Elementary.   A $1,375 grant will provide opportunities for “Link” Program participants (peer to peer support program for autistic students) to participate in community activities that would focus on needed skills for transition into post-high school life, including work, social and service. 

Five additional organizations received grants including the Grand Rapids Symphony Society for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 Greenville Area Music Education Programs, St. Charles Catholic School for twelve iPads and cases, and the Montcalm County Great Start Collaborative to help fund an Early Childhood Conference.  Faith Community Christian School received three grants – a magnetic whiteboard, classroom furniture, and a new reading and writing curriculum for school-wide use – totaling over $23,500.  Additionally, Junior Achievement of Michigan Great Lakes received a $15,000 grant to implement a pilot program this school year at Lincoln Heights Elementary that delivers programs focusing on financial literacy, workforce readiness and entrepreneurship to all grade levels.  The second year of the grant will expand the program to the other three Greenville elementary schools for the 2014-15 school year. 

Greenville Public Schools, Grattan Academy, and St. Charles Catholic School also received grants for their Opportunities for Success programs.  These programs help students fulfill a need that might otherwise go unmet, and to help make the student more successful in their educational environment.                                            

The Education Foundation of Greenville (EFG) awarded six grants totaling $11,954.   A grant to Cedar Crest and Walnut Hills Elementary will fund dramatic play areas for early childhood special education, and grants to Walnut Hills and Lincoln Heights Elementary will support the Second Step program at both schools.  Additional grants will fund a summer reading program at Baldwin Heights Elementary, science department digital microscopes at the Middle School, and early childhood special education sensory areas at Cedar Crest and Walnut Hills.   

EFG will also be awarding approximately $10,000 in Wellness Grants this month. 

Both Foundations are pleased to be able to support educational programs and projects within the Greenville school system as the Board of Education continues to address budgetary concerns.

The Greenville Area Community Foundation will award grants again this fall and all area non-profit, tax exempt organizations are encouraged to apply. The deadline for grant applications for the Fall General Grant Cycle is August 8, 2014.  The August 8 deadline also applies to the Lakeview Area Community Fund, and the Meijer Children’s Health Care Fund that awards grants to organizations that provide health programs for indigent children.

 For further information on the Greenville Area Community Foundation and the grant process contact Amy O’Brien, GACF Director of Grants & Communications at amy@gacfmi.org or by phone at 616.754.2640.  You can also visit the website at www.gacfmi.org for applications and additional information.  Questions about the Education Foundation of Greenville can be directed to Wendy Baty at edufound@greenville.k12.mi.us or www.efgmi.com.                                  

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