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30 Newport County nonprofits receive grants
By Chris Barnett / July 3, 2014 /   Loading Disqus...

The Rhode Island Foundation has awarded $166,666 in grants to 30 nonprofit groups serving Newport County residents.

The grants, through the Foundation’s Newport County Fund (NCF), will underwrite a host of activities ranging from job readiness training and after-school activities to farming and domestic violence prevention.

“From enriching arts and educational opportunities for young people to underwriting critical health and environmental programs, we are proud to work with partners that are improving lives here,” said Neil Steinberg, the Foundation’s president and CEO. “We are grateful to the donors who make this assistance possible and the local men and women who keep us closely connected to the community.”

The NCF offered grants of up $10,000 in seven key funding areas: arts and culture, basic human needs, children and families, economic security, the environment, healthy lives and housing.

The Foundation worked with an advisory committee comprised of Newport County residents Elizabeth Finn, Kristen Humphrey, Victoria Johnson, Leland Merrill Jr., John Murphy and John Trifero in making the funding decisions.

Since 2002, the NCF has invested more than $2.6 million in funding programs and services for residents of Jamestown, Little Compton, Middletown, Newport, Portsmouth and Tiverton. The NCF is one of one of several committee-advised funds at the Foundation established to fulfill the desire of donors and serving specific issues or geographic areas.

The grant recipients are:

·         The Boys & Girls Club of Newport County received $5,900 to increase the number of students serviced by its College Bound and SAT preparation programs and incorporating additional elements of job readiness training. 

·         Child and Family Services of Newport County received $3,500 to enable clients to attend the Newport Art Museum’s Coleman Center for Creative Studies at no cost.

·         Common Fence Music of Tiverton received $5,000 to underwrite the cost of offering “Connecting the Beats,” African-inspired drumming and dance, to eight Newport County youth organizations and schools including the Boys and Girls Clubs of Newport County, Portsmouth Action for Youth, The East Bay Met School in Newport, Melrose School in Jamestown, Gaudet Middle School in Middletown and Pell Elementary School, Thompson Middle School and Rogers High School in Newport.

·         Community MusicWorks of Newport received $10,000 to support for the Newport String Project, which will offer violin and viola lessons to 18 students in grades 1-4 at the Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center in Newport.

·         Cornerstone Adult Services Inc. received $8,000 to provide a series of 10 weekly educational programs that would help older Newport County adults gain the skills they need for healthier living now and longer independence in the future.

·         Friends of Ballard Park of Newport received $5,000 to enable 700 children to participate in its Environmental Explorations program, which offers after-school activities and hands-on, experiential learning opportunities that correspond with subjects like geology, insects and habitats.

·         Girl Scouts of Rhode Island received $5,000 for its Urban Outreach program, which introduces at-risk girls in grades K-8 from lower income, Newport County neighborhoods to scouting and the benefits of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

·         Jamestown Arts Center received $3,000 to support its Heifetz on Tour Residency Program, which brings world-class youth musicians to Newport County and provides unique educational and artistic opportunities for lower-income residents.

·         The Katie Brown Educational Program received $5,000 to provide domestic violence prevention instruction in Tiverton Middle School and Tiverton High School.

·         The Little Compton Community Center received $5,000 to create a pilot program to engage youngsters ages 14 to 17 in volunteer activities in Little Compton and greater Newport County.

·         Lucy's Hearth of Middletown received $10,000 to implement a nutrition program promoting healthy eating habits and improving food security for at-risk mothers and children at its emergency shelter.

·         The Middletown Historical Society received $1,000 to enable 345 4th- and 5th-grade students at Middletown's Gaudet Middle School to participate in its "Golden Rule Days" and "Wonderful Old Windmill" (WOW) experiential educational programs.

·         Newport Community School received $10,000 to continue implementing its Grade Transition Programs.  Offered after grades 5, 8 and 11, the initiative alleviates student anxiety, encourages grade readiness, provides initial academic preparedness for the new grade level and aids academic performance.

·         The Newport County Community Mental Health Center received $6,617 to meet the treatment needs of its clients by training additional clinicians in Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy.

·         The Newport County YMCA received $10,000 to launch Stewards of Children, a sexual abuse training program that empowers adults to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to child sexual abuse. 

·         The Newport Partnership for Families received $4,400 to underwrite the Reading Reaps Rewards Summer Learning Initiative, which ensures that Newport children have access to books, literacy-boosting skills and enrichment activities during the summer vacation.

·         The Norman Bird Sanctuary of Middletown received $5,000 to establish an environmental education series including school-based workshops and exploratory learning opportunities, for all 3rd-graders at Pell Elementary School in Newport.

·         Parent Partners received $7,000 to provide weekly mentoring and workshops on finances and budgeting, health and wellness, goal setting, career and education opportunities and life-skills to low-income, often single-parent families in Newport County. 

·         Methodist Community Gardens of Portsmouth received $5,000 to obtain a second 2,200-square-foot high-tunnel greenhouse to increase the production of fresh food for needy residents of Newport County.

·         The Prudence Island School Foundation received $1,799 to buy equipment for its students' annual Filmmaking Project.  Students complete every creative and technical aspect of making and screening a feature film including the screenplay, costumes, storyboarding, non-linear film editing, art design, special effects and lighting.

·         Rhode Island Black Storytellers received $2,500 to support performances of FUNDA FEST 17: A Celebration of Black Storytelling in Newport schools and the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center in Newport.

·         Sail to Prevail received $5,500 to enable low-income Newport County residents to participate in its Adaptive Sailing Program.

·         Save The Bay received $5,950 to offer a comprehensive marine science education program, Bay Partners, in Newport elementary schools.

·         The St. Vincent de Paul Society of Newport received $5,000 to provide financial assistance to individuals and families facing emergencies including eviction, utility shut-offs, lack of home heating oil, need of prescription drugs and clothing.

·         Star Kids Scholarship Program of Middletown received $1,500 to enable low-income youth to attend summer camp programs or pursue enriching after-school activities.

·         The Nature Conservancy received $5,000 to evaluate the benefits of creating artificial reefs in Narragansett Bay near the north end of Aquidneck Island as a habitat for marine life.

·         Visiting Nurses Services of Newport and Bristol Counties (VNS) received $5,000 to offer educational and supportive programs to VNS staff to enable them to better support the caregivers of the agency’s patients.

·         The Washington Square Services Corporation received $10,000 to underwrite a case manager to coordinate medical and health services for residents of the McKinney Cooperative Shelter in Newport. 

·         Women & Infants Hospital received $5,000 to launch a rehabilitative exercise program for women cancer patients and survivors at the hospital’s Center for Health and Well-Being in Middletown.

·         The Women's Resource Center received $5,000 for the Youth Connectedness Strategy, which will engage local youth, artists and neighbors to create a large-scale mural in Hunter Park in Newport.

The Rhode Island Foundation is the largest and most comprehensive funder of nonprofit organizations in Rhode Island. In 2013, the Foundation made grants of more than $31 million to organizations addressing the state’s most pressing issues and needs of diverse communities. Through leadership, fundraising and grantmaking activities, often in partnership with individuals and organizations, the Foundation is helping Rhode Island reach its true potential. For more information, visit www.rifoundation.org. 

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