Greenbelt Community Foundation Awards Ceremony
The Greenbelt Community Foundation gives out grants to local organizations twice a year. In February, I wrote about the foundation’s annual tea where the GAVA/GATE animation program and the Greenbelt Elementary School Arts in Action program received grants. This past Sunday, four other organizations were awarded funding for the spring 2012 funding cycle.
The yellow handout is “Tips for Writing a Winning Proposal” and the green one “Creating Your Legacy: Planned Giving Options.”
Programs for this afternoon’s award ceremony. A motto of the foundation is “A bridge between the needs of the community and caring donors.” Since its founding in 2006, the foundation has received $224,000 in contributions from residents, businesses and governmental organizations. Nearly $90,000 in grants have been awarded to community organizations. A variety of projects have been funded including Eleanor Roosevelt High School wind ensemble, introduction video at Greenbelt Museum, mobile computer education program by Camp Fire USA, Roosevelt Center wi-fi, and Greenbelt Farmers Market start-up fund.
From left Greenbelt Community Foundation Advisory Board member Austin Henry chats with City Council member Leta Mach and Mayor Judith Davis.
Advisory Board chair Dorrie Bates opens the awards ceremony. She reminds everyone that this is the 11th round of awards and recognizes current and former board members in attendance. She says that the foundation received quite a number of applications for this round and is happy to announce that four organizations will receive funding from $500 to $5,000, depending on their projects. She emphasizes that the foundation would like to fund projects from all parts of the city and invites organizations to apply by the next deadline which is September 15.
Jim Fischer, head of the proposal review committee, describes the process for vetting the proposals. After proposals are received by the due dates, April 15 for the spring cycle and September 15 for the fall cycle, they are scanned and put online for the review committee members. Each proposal is scored, reviewed by the review committee, and then presented to the full board. The board looks for steps that need to be taken to strengthen the proposals and makes decisions. Then the proposals are submitted to the parent organization which holds the foundation’s money, the Community Foundation for the National Capital Region, which reviews the awardees to make sure they are 501c3 organizations and then cuts the checks.
Fischer announces the first winner today—Chesapeake Education, Arts and Research Society (CHEARS)’s TapRoots program. “TapRoots will integrate into Greenbelt Middle School an agricultural education program introducing topics of environmental sustainability, agroecology, food safety and nutrition.”
Advisory Board member Sandy Lange presents Greenbelt Museum curator Megan Searing Young with the second award today. Lange recalls the founding of the Greenbelt Museum: “It seems like only yesterday that we started the museum and it was 25 years ago. I can hardly believe it. When Barbara [Havekost], Mary Linstrom, and some of us got together and we had this crazy idea. The museum since flourished way beyond our wildest dreams.” She says that the grant will go to the 75th Anniversary exhibit which will open in August.
“In conjunction with the 75th Anniversary Committee, this project will support the new exhibition ‘Greenbelt: The First 75 Years’ to be mounted in the museum’s exhibition space in the Greenbelt Community Center.”
Young says that the museum is supported by the City of Greenbelt but a lot of the programming and exhibitions need extra funding. She says that this exhibit is new for them because typically the museum has focused on the years from 1937 to 1952 when the government sold the town. Over the past couple of years, the museum has broadened its focus, and this exhibit will cover all 75 years of Greenbelt’s history with panels devoted to each decade of Greenbelt’s history. There will also be an oral history component.
Jim Cohen says that this event is one of his favorite “because we get to recognize really talented people who live here, do work here, do wonderful things for the community, and then give them money.”
Jim Cohen presents a check to Joan Jacobs of the Greenbelt Cultural Arts Center for a project called “Restroom Rescue—Door and Opener”: “This project will allow replacement of the present entrance door to the Greenbelt Arts Center and installation of an automatic door opener in keeping with the Americans With Disability Act.”
Joan Jacobs was the chairwoman of the Arts Center’s Restroom Rescue Committee which in 2010 received $5,000 from the Greenbelt Community Foundation to renovate its restrooms, to bring them in compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act. The project was completed in February of this year. They will use this grant to install an automatic opener to its outside door, again to bring it to ADA compliance. She expects this project to be done by August.
Lois Rosado is a new member of GCF’s Advisory Board.
Virginia Beauchamp reports for the Greenbelt News Review.
From left are City Council member Leta Mach, board members Barbara Havekost and Lois Rosado, and former board member Eulalie Lucas.
Dorrie Bates presents a check to Lynne Tucker Chandler, President of Greenbelt Farmers Market Board of Directors, for a project titled “Farmers Market Risk Reduction and Signage Improvement.” “The Farmers Market will replace temporary portable signage with highly visible permanent signs on Kenilworth Avenue and Greenbelt Road and much smaller ‘Trailblazer’ signs on Crescent Road and Southway.”
Chandler says that volunteers of the Farmers Market currently put up large signs to advertise the market on Kenilworth Avenue and Greenbelt Road but they are temporary. “So people park their car at National Guard Armory and then run across the road, plant the signs, and run back, dodging traffic along the way.” She says that permanent signs will reduce these risks and keep the market in people’s mind all year round.
Dorrie Bates acknowledges the work done by former board member Eulalie Lucas who recently stepped down after serving two two-year terms. She says that Lucas has worked on community relations, government relations, and the foundation’s annual tea for four years. “She gets the potted plant award,” courtesy of Greenbelt Farmers Market. Lucas responds that she is honored to serve on the board. She says that she likes the foundation striving to include all parts of the city and cultural diversity.
Barbara Havekost sums up: “I have to say I have been in Greenbelt for a long time and have been on a lot of organizations, but I don’t think I have been on one that’s done quite so much for so many people.” She says that she has been impressed by the applications. She mentions TapRoots’s educational program which will bring University of Maryland students to interact and serve as mentors for Greenbelt Middle School students and the museum exhibit which she thinks will be the “icing on the cake” for the 75th anniversary. She says that she herself has struggled with the door at the Arts Center and the Community Foundation is proud to have played a role in the start of the Farmers Market.
Three winners of today’s awards stand with board secretary Jim Fischer and chair Dorrie Bates. TapRoots’s manager Tony DiMeglio is not available today. The foundation’s logo, showing a hand holding a seedling, is the work of Greenbelt-based artist Shayna Skolnik.
Ceremony attendants chat. In the front row are Virginia Beauchamp and Elizabeth Barber.
Lois Rosado and Eulalie Lucas
Barbara Havekost and Jim Cohen
On the right are Mayor Davis and Lynne Chandler, and on the left, Michael Hartman, Jim Fischer, and Joan Jacobs.
Sylvia Lewis, David Lange, and Leta Mach
Lynne Chandler and Virginia Beauchamp
The deadline for the foundation’s next funding cycle is September 15, 2012.