Community Needs You Can Fund

The Community Foundation  Grant Committees review all grant applications and give much-needed funding to local nonprofits. However, if they had more grant dollars available, the committee could have granted to more projects. That’s where you can help.

Below is the list of organizations they were unable to help but felt were very deserving.

Through your fund, you may want to support a request(s) that matches your interests and take advantage of our grant committee’s due diligence and review process. To help fund a nonprofit below visit DonorCentral or complete the attached form and return it to Dawn Grundeman at dgrundeman@cfcollier.org.

 

Human Services:
Noah’s Ark Food Pantry – Walk-in Commercial Refrigerator – $8,000

The Noah’s Ark Family Services food pantry serves nearly 200 people each Tuesday and Friday for a total of 400 people served each week. Each box of food given away serves a whole family, which provides food for approximately 2,000 people per week. Noah’s Ark believes it is the only free food pantry that provides all fresh food, versus dry food. The reason so many families visit Noah’s Ark Family Services is to get the fresh food so badly needed for their families. This is the food preferred by their families, and it is higher in nutrition.

Noah’s Ark would like to increase the amount of fresh food provided to each of the 400 families served each week from 50 pounds to 75 pounds. To do this, Noah’s Ark needs to purchase a commercial walk-in refrigerator. Currently, there are several small refrigerators and there is not enough space to store the donated fresh food.

Noah’s Ark needs $8,000 to purchase a walk-in commercial refrigerator.

 

Environmental Education:
Conservancy of Southwest Florida, Inc. – STEM-based Environmental Education for Schoolchildren – $5,000

At a cost of roughly $5 per student, a gift of $1,000 will support 200 students, and a gift of $5,000 will support approximately 1,000 students in the program.

The Conservancy currently serves over 8,000 students per year with meaningful, inquiry-based, hands-on STEM lessons through its STEM Learning Adventures programming. These programs integrate science, technology, engineering, and math disciplines by addressing topics like water quality, native wildlife population change, and habitat loss.  Students show an increase of 19% in STEM concepts following their curriculum-based visit to the Conservancy.

Reaching students early and often with quality STEM-based programs, such as the STEM Learning Adventures environmental education programs provided by the Conservancy, prepares them to succeed academically and in the marketplace. Currently, Florida ranks forty-five out of fifty-one states (including Washington, D.C.) in ACT science scores and forty-three out of fifty-one in ACT math scores. Only 52% of the fifth grade and eighth-grade students in Collier County achieved science proficiency on their FCAT (Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test). The situation is also bleak for high school graduates. Only 26% of graduating seniors in Collier County are prepared for college-level biology, and only 35% are prepared for college-level math – less than the national averages of 36% and 44% respectively. The Conservancy’s STEM programs improve students’ scientific literacy and enhance their ability to understand and fully participate in an increasingly technological world, empowering them to make meaningful contributions to the community in which they live.

 

Children:
Naples Therapeutic Riding Center – Naples Equestrian Therapies for At-Risk Youth – $15,000

 Naples Therapeutic Riding Center requests $15,000 to underwrite the cost for 32 at-risk children under the age of 18 to participate in our equine-group facilitated programs at no charge. 2018 the riding center served 234 at-risk youth and would like to provide scholarships to cover the cost of children whose participation is unreimbursed.

Our eight-week classes are tailored specifically to provide support for children who have lost a loved one, are healing from PTSD due to trauma and violence or have been abused, neglected or abandoned; and those struggling with homelessness or addiction. By building a trusting relationship with a horse, participants learn how to develop safe personal boundaries, confidence, and self-esteem, and are guided on how to apply these lessons to the interactions they have with humans in their everyday lives. Therapists for our sessions are all credentialed mental health professionals legally licensed to practice psychotherapy.

Young people often find that our non-traditional mental health setting makes it easier to open up. Consistent attendance has been observed by counselors to directly correlate with improved participant behaviors, mood, and progress in areas of behavioral and emotional well-being. One counselor noted, “Mary lost her mother six months ago. After attending an NTRC group, she finally felt comfortable enough to talk to her father about this death.”