Elkhart County Community Foundation sets record with $673,237 in grants

The Elkhart County Community Foundation gave away its largest total of grants -- $673,237 -- to nonprofit organizations in its most recent quarter.

Posted on Oct. 24, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on Oct. 24, 2013 at 1:16 p.m.

ELKHART — Gifts from the Elkhart County Community Foundation to local nonprofit groups keep getting bigger and better.

The foundation gave a record $673,237 to 21 non-profit organizations in its latest quarter. The foundation, supported largely by a posthumous gift by David Gundlach and other recent donations, distributes 5 percent of its funds annually.

“The awards this time were monumental for ECCF, as we awarded in this quarter a larger sum than we have historically been able to award in an entire year,” according to Shannon Oakes, grants administration director for the foundation.

The foundation has $2.25 million to give out during the 2013-14 fiscal year. Requests from nonprofit organizations for this round of grants totaled more than $1.3 million.

Among the grants awarded this quarter was the foundation’s largest single donation to a nonprofit organization to date. The Salvation Army of Goshen will receive $250,000 over the next five years to expand its services for seniors. The foundation’s grant will leverage additional funding for the agency through a 2-1 match from the Salvation Army Thomas Lyle Foundation.

Another highlight among this quarter’s grants is a $75,000 gift to the Elkhart County Museum Association’s new program that sponsors field trips for local students. The grant covers up to 10,000 field trips for students to places such as the Ruthmere, the Midwest Museum of American Art and 17 other museums and historical sites.

“School field trips are an important way for the community to support not only the museums and cultural institutions in our county but also the kids who will be able to learn about the place where they’re growing up,” said Bill Firstenberger, president of the Elkhart County Museum Association.

Firstenberger hopes to match the grant with community support. The association is accepting donations through its new website, elkhartfieldtrip.org.

September grants awarded in the first quarter of the 2013-14 fiscal year include:

Ÿ Salvation Army of Goshen: $250,000 ($50,000 for five years), multi-year support for expansion of senior care services.

Ÿ The Crossing Educational: $110,000, Crossing Correctional Facilities Educational program.

Ÿ Church Community Services: $100,000, Men Alive Program and structural support for community transitioning.

Ÿ Elkhart County Museum Association: $75,000, countywide field trip initiative.

Ÿ ETHOS: $50,000/matching, transportation support for the Science 2 Go bus.

Ÿ Faith Mission of Elkhart County: $50,000, safety and security project.

Ÿ Plain Community Partnerships: $50,000.

Ÿ Angel Central Academy: $45,000, building relocation project for permanent location.

Ÿ Goshen Kiwanis Foundation, Chamberlain Elementary School: $25,000, playground project.

Ÿ Women’s Care Center: $25,000, parent counseling, pregnancy support and BABE program.

Ÿ Child and Parent Services: $18,473, home visitors essential technology.

Ÿ Tolson Center: $14,300, technology upgrades.

Ÿ DreamsWork: $14,140, Successful Youth initiative.

Ÿ Freedom Hall: $11,000, roofing project.

Ÿ O’Hana Heritage Foundation, A Rosie Place: $10,000, support for medically fragile children and respite care.

Ÿ Riverview Adult Daycare Center: $7,750, client transportation.

Ÿ All God’s Children Childcare and Preschool: $5,000, technology upgrades.

Ÿ Elkhart County Feral Cat Coalition: $5,000, trap-neuter-release program.

Ÿ Indiana Youth Institute: $3,000, Elkhart County Youth Worker Cafes, peer groups for youth workers.

Ÿ St. Joseph Valley Camerata: $2,574, fall 2013 concert.

Ÿ Northridge High School Science Olympiad Team: $2,000, 3D scanner technology.

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