This spring we received an unprecedented 33 grant requests from area nonprofits, totaling $302,276! While we, unfortunately, were unable to fulfill all of the grant requests received during this competitive grant cycle, we are humbled to know that so many nonprofits in our community turn to us for support and are proud to have been able to at least partially fund a majority of them.
With that said, we are pleased to announce that we were able to grant 18 area organizations over $76,000 from our field of interest and Foundation funds. Per usual, funding priority was given to projects and programs that address the needs of the community, reach a broad population, and will likely yield substantial results. Our Grants Committee was able to support all areas of interest, including arts and culture, civic and economic development, education, the environment, and health and human services.
Here at the Foundation, we are fortunate enough to witness first-hand what it means to be inspired and pave the way for a brighter future that promises opportunity for all. Each of the nonprofits who applied are doing a remarkable job of making southeast Virginia a more vibrant place to live, work and play. We thank them for their efforts and service. We look forward to continuing to serve our community and ensure that the nonprofit sector has the funds and practical tools for accomplishing its visionary work.
Scroll down to read more about each of the awarded organizations and their programs:
American Red Cross
The American Red Cross will be able to provide disaster relief and install smoke alarms in Chesapeake and Portsmouth using a cutting-edge GIS mapping tool to identify and overlay information, including where the Red Cross has responded to disaster-caused needs, where fire-related deaths, injuries and or incidents have been reported, and obtain information about the local median household incomes.
Chesapeake Bay Academy
With funding, Chesapeake Bay Academy will be able to launch their MAKE CBA program at the middle school level. MAKE CBA is a program designed to increase students’ knowledge in science and technology as well as in the concept of design thinking. Beginning in 6th grade, students will integrate the central constructs of design thinking, energy-related concepts, physics and chemistry. It is anticipated that students participating in this program at the middle school level will be better prepared to excel when they arrive in the upper school and participate in this program again in 11th and 12th grade.
Chesapeake Public School Educational Foundation
Funding will go towards classroom supplies for Chesapeake Public School Educational Foundation’s Teacher Supply Center inside Deep Creek Middle School. At the Teacher Supply Center, teachers will be able to shop for their classrooms at no cost to them. Initially, the teachers will be able to shop once a month for 10 items for their classes and for students enrolled in their class that may not have the needed supplies to be actively engaged in instruction.
Communities in Schools of Hampton Roads
Students in the cities served by Communities in Schools of Hampton Roads continue to live below the poverty line and struggle with basic needs, including healthcare and nutrition. Through its School Site Coordination program, Site Coordinators will be positioned in I.C. Norcum High School and Cradock Middle School to assess students’ needs and coordinate resources to ensure their success in-and-out of the classroom. Funding will enable CIS to continue their work and increase the number of hours in these two schools, reach more students, and dig deeper into the needs of the current student population.
EDMARC Hospice for Children
Funding will allow EDMARC to expand their Pediatric Nursing Care program to provide registered nurses who are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to any family who has a child with a life-threatening illness. EDMARC’s nursing program is designed to provide medical care for children so as to maximize the family’s options for home care of a terminally ill child, prevent unnecessary institutionalization, and minimize the long-term ill effects of parental and sibling separation. With this program, the nurses will be able to perform many tests and procedures in the home that would otherwise require hospitalization.
Elizabeth River Project
Funding will provide the Elizabeth River Project with technical support, implementation, supplies, educational materials and staff support as they expand their River Star Businesses program to the Eastern Branch of the Elizabeth River. The Eastern Branch is now considered the Elizabeth’s River most polluted branch and is a new area of focus area of restoration. Along the Eastern Branch, River Star Businesses will receive free advice and recommendations, specific to each facility, on how to implement projects such as oyster and wetlands restorations, as well as pollution prevention efforts to reverse these negative trends and improve the river.
Friends of the Portsmouth Juvenile Court
Funding will allow the Friends of the Portsmouth Juvenile Court to invest in new technology equipment for a new part-time position that has already been awarded by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services. The new equipment will include the purchase of a new computer, printer, Windows 10 Pro license, and keyboard and mouse set. The technology will enhance all aspects of operations from processing volunteer applications, to data collection and entry and required reporting.
Governor’s School for the Performing Arts Foundation^The
In keeping pace with technological advances of arts and entertainment, the GSA Foundation is supporting the development of the School’s curriculum enhancement through the addition of a comprehensive film production program. The program will focus on the creative process of film production with a curriculum aimed at theory and practice. Students will develop hands-on production skills and learn the foundations of filmmaking from pre-production work to post-production work.
Funding will go towards a pilot program aimed at addressing food insecurity among 50 low-income seniors in South Norfolk. Food insecurity among seniors is a result of several factors, including the lack of a full-service grocery store in the community. As a result, many residents shop from corner stores where the selection is limited to more convenience types of groceries and less of fruit, vegetables and meats. Compounding the difficulty for seniors with accessing healthier items, is their reliance on public transportation to get them to the nearest grocery store. Funding for the program will serve as a one-time allocation to purchase the supplies needed to start the program.
Horizons Hampton Roads
Funding will go directly towards swimming costs for the YMCA of Portsmouth. Approximately 135 students, served at the Portsmouth site, will receive 2.5 hours of dedicated pool time and Red Cross swim instruction per day. In addition to the swim instruction, the Horizons teaching staff will deliver academic instruction in reading, math and other STEM-related areas at Portsmouth Regional Catholic School. A nutritious breakfast and lunch, art and music, and fieldtrips will round out the students’ daily schedule over the five-day/six-week period.
Nansemond River Preservation Alliance
The Nansemond Watershed Initiative K-12 Student and Community-Wide Environmental Education program will educate, train and encourage Suffolk residents and businesses to be environmental stewards. The Community-Wide program includes 15-18 hands-on, community projects each year for citizens. The School-Wide program, on the other hand, will have a multiplier effect – students will be able to share the information they’ve learned with others to help them, too, become environmental stewards. Both programs will educate and encourage citizens to reduce nitrogen, phosphorus, sediment and bacterial contamination.
National Center for the Prevention of Community Violence
Actively Caring for People (AC4P) is a program based on proven research with a focus on establishing a climate of rewarding acts of kindness and positive behavior. Funding will allow this program to be piloted in elementary and middle schools throughout Chesapeake. Students with acts of kindness will be rewarded with an AC4P wristband and will be encouraged to pass their wristband to a fellow student or staff member within their school who is also demonstrating kindness.
Portsmouth Catholic Regional School
Funding will enable Portsmouth Catholic Regional School to upgrade the computers in their Technology Lab, which are now beyond upgradeable use. The computers no longer allow the students access to current educational programs and applications, nor do they have the capacity to perform higher level coding and editing projects completed in their STREAM curriculum. Not only will the upgraded computer lab benefit the school’s population of 172 students, but it will also benefit the 135 public school students who participate in the Horizons Hampton Roads Summer Enrichment Program.
Portsmouth Self-Sufficiency Project
Portsmouth receives significant funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Continuum of Care Program in a unified effort to reduce and ultimately eliminate homelessness. This funding, however, requires a significant contribution from the community. The Portsmouth Self Sufficiency Project relies on the generosity of our community to provide the contribution required to maintain this vital program. Funding from SEVACF will provide a portion of the required community contribution for HUD’s Continuum of Care funding that supports a comprehensive network of prevention, emergency services, and care and training for self-sufficiency.
Roc Solid Foundation
The Solid Support Program offers Roc Solid Ready Bags to families and children in Hampton Roads who have just been diagnosed with pediatric cancer. The bags provide essentials for an extended hospital stay, including blankets, toiletries, pens, journals, coloring books, a preloaded debit card, quarters for the vending machines, and an Amazon Kindle Fire. Funding from SEVACF will cover the costs of nine (9) Ready Bags at $325 each.
The SPACEBASE summer camps are an extension of the school year lesson plans in which rising 5th graders explore spatial literacy, modeling, graphing, team building, and leadership skills. Working in teams, students will generate data, learn to organize data, and represent the date graphically. The summer camp instructors will include teachers within the Portsmouth Public School system who participated in the school year SPACEBASE program. Funding will go towards covering the salaries of these instructors since they are considered part-time employees during the summer, and therefore, are not paid.
Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art
Student Art Start is a program for Portsmouth 4th grade students. Student Art Start begins in the classroom. Teachers receive materials, created by MOCA’s education staff that correlate directly to the current Virginia Standards of Learning. These materials are designed to be integrated into the existing curriculum and are used as an introduction to the students’ field trip to the museum to view the exhibition. Once students arrive at the museum, they are given a one-hour guided tour of the gallery. After the tour, the students create their own piece of artwork to take home. Following the students’ visit, they will receive free family admission passes to MOCA for up to five visitors.
Westmoreland Children & Youth Association
The Westmoreland Children & Youth Association is looking forward to another year of continued sports, recreational and cultural activities, and a mentor program for at-risk/underprivileged children in the area. Due to loss, damage, and wear of equipment, funding will go towards replacing the equipment needed for flag football and cheerleading, as well as providing each child with his/her own trophy as a symbol of finishing what was started and as a memory of what was learned.