Williamsburg Community Foundation awards more than $50,000 in grants

hbridges@vagazette.com

 

The Williamsburg Community Foundation presented grants totaling $54,650 to 15 local organizations at its fall grant award luncheon.

With donors, board members and grantees present, executive director Nancy Sullivan said Wednesday the luncheon epitomized the foundation’s mission: connecting people who care with causes that matter, forever.

“This event brings all of us together,” she said.

It was the foundation’s second grant round of the year; the first round in spring distributed close to $20,000.

Kate Slevin, of the foundation’s distribution committee, said the foundation received 30 applications for grants totaling more than $100,000.

The 17 grants distributed Wednesday will fund a range of community services and initiatives.

For some, grants will help continue services already provided. The Free Mammogram Program provided by the Auxiliary of Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center has, since 1998, provided more than 4,000 mammograms to people in the community, said Cathy Adams of the auxiliary.

“These are people that fall between the gap,” she said.

The Arc of Greater Williamsburg, serving adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, received a $5,000 grant for client transportation, which executive director Pam McGregor said comprises a large portion of the organization’s yearly budget.

“Transportation is truly what drivers our organization,” McGregor said.

For others, grants will be used to fund new initiatives. Hospice House and Support Care of Williamsburg will partner with Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center to pilot a “Final Gifts” vigil program as a comfort to patients in their last 24 to 48 hours.

“We believe that people should not have to die alone or be alone in their grief,” said Debra Podish of Hospice House.

Colonial Behavioral Health received a $5,000 transportation grant to purchase a vehicle for its new Program of Assertive Community Treatment (PACT) team, serving individuals with severe mental illness. The vehicle will allow the team to travel to the client.

Other organizations to receive grants Wednesday included Avalon Center, Housing Partnerships, Williamsburg Area Faith in Action, Peninsula Pastoral Counseling Center, FISH, Virginia Living Museum, Dream Catchers, All Together, Williamsburg Choral Guild, Williamsburg Music Club and Gwendolyn’s Wish.

Since 1999, the foundation has awarded $6.9 million in both grants and scholarships. The money distributed Wednesday came from the foundation’s community endowment, area-of-interest funds and donor-advised funds.

The foundation will hold a session from 9:30-11:30 a.m. on Nov. 10 about grant priorities, guidelines and application. For more information, call 757-259-1660 or email office@williamsburgcommunityfoundation.org.

Bridges can be reached by phone at 757-345-2342.

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