Bourbon County residents have given money to a local foundation that distributes to causes for all segments of the community.
Last week, Fort Scott Area Community Foundation presented a total of $33,375.40 to 22 area organizations for 2019-2020, according to a press release from the foundation.
The recipients were schools, businesses, churches and organizations.
Members of the FSACF are Sheryl Bloomfield, Otie Thomas, Barb Albright, Beth Nuss, Bob Marshall, Carla Farmer, Charles Gentry, Craig Campbell, Frank Halsey, Gary Palmer, Gregg Motley, Janet Braun, Melissa Wise, Michelle Bruner, Travis Shelton and
The foundation received a total of thirty-three qualifying applications requesting over $108,000 in aid.
The following awardees were presented in the order the foundation received their applications, according to a press release:
- Carrie Southwell, a third-grade teacher at Eugene Ware Elementary School, is receiving $1.200 to introduce Ozobots in the classroom. Students will learn to use a computer application and creative coding to control robots and problem solve.
- About 150 kindergartners will experience real-world learning opportunities, thanks in part to a $750 grant administered by Cristin Stark, a teacher at Winfield Scott Elementary School. On the itinerary are Woods Pumpkin Patch and Deanna Rose Petting Zoo.
- Providing scholarships to help local adults get their GED is an aim of a $1,000 grant to Eastern Kansas Adult Education – Neosho County Community College’s FSCC location. This grant will be administered by Aubrey Duft.
- Jerry Witt, Chairman of the Fort Scott/Bourbon County Riverfront Authority, applied for a grant to provide pedestrians with durable park benches on which to rest at the new Riverfront Park. We are providing $2,317 toward that end.
- The KS-NE Conference of the Seventh-day Adventists will receive $1,000 to continue a program called “Bags of Love” that provides age-appropriate essentials to children in the community who have been removed from their homes for safety reasons. Janet Tucker is the chapter president.
- Responding to an urgent need in our community for a clothes pantry, Billie Jo Drake, under the auspices of Bourbon County Inter-agency Coalition, Inc., will use the grant award of $1,000 to seed this ministry. The goal of this organization is to bring local agencies together to foster self-reliance on the part of our families in need.
- Rekindling youth baseball in Fort Scott is the goal of the American Legion Post 25. Carl Jowers will use $1,440 to buy uniforms and equipment to host an American Legion team in Fort Scott.
- The Via Christi emergency room in Fort Scott needs a Vapotherm device to help stabilize patients with repertory issues to facilitate safe transfer to an in-patient facility. Johnna Norton is the administrator of our grant for $1,519 so this equipment can be domiciled here. Another local foundation is providing the balance of the cost of this equipment.
- Can you say “ukulele” without smiling? Fort Scott will have about 150 fifth grade students getting lessons with a grant for $2,074 which will provide 30 of these user- friendly instruments with all the trimmings. Music teacher Mary Jo Harper will use this program, along with the recorder program, to help prepare elementary students for high school band or orchestra programs.
- Ella Beth, a sophomore at FSHS, is energized about redesigning the school courtyard for educational and community use. A grant of $2,000 will help provide seating, handicapped accessible ramps, landscaping, art and shade, fostering community pride and encouraging student creativity.
- K-State Research & Extension, Southwind Extension District, is planning an Aging With Attitude Regional Expo, attracting about 170 people from 11 SEK Counties to the area. This $500 grant, administered by Barbara Stockebrand, will provide the keynote speaker for the event. The expo aims to educate families and promote positive attitudes about the challenges of our aging population.
- There is no greater need in our community than to protect the most vulnerable in our midst, which is the mission of Christa Horn and the volunteers that serve Bourbon County CASA. Horn will use the $500 grant to help facilitate training for new volunteers and ongoing education for staff.
- David Goodyear, under the umbrella of Fort Scott Church of the Nazarene and other cooperating churches, administers the Pathways program to provide work projects as a bridge to regular, gainful employment. This $1,800 grant will help provide a second chance for those whose backgrounds and lack of job skills make it difficult to be self-sufficient.
- $1,000 will go to cancer patients and their families to help facilitate their fight. Lavetta Simmons administers Care to Share, working with patients and caregivers to ease the financial burden of transportation, house cleaning, yard work, meals, and any personal needs that arise while they are focused on the battle.
- The historic Presbyterian Church has a tradition of bringing edifying culture to our community on many levels, including the Fort Scott Chamber Music Series that hundreds of audience members have enjoyed. Carson Felt will use the $2,500 grant to attract high-quality musicians to Fort Scott over the next year for listening pleasure.
- CarePortal is a new program in town administered by Shelly Bradley and the KS-NE Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. The organization coordinates critical need responses to vulnerable children in our community and will use the $2,000 to provide beds for children who have none.
- First-grade teacher Robin Webb will use the $2,000 grant to familiarize r children with local resources by organizing trips to businesses, not-for-profits and government locations. In the process, students will begin to build a background in STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) and become much more community-oriented.
- Jan Hedges is the event coordinator of The Fort Scott Writing Festival, organized to promote creative writing in our community. The festival will provide workshops and a chance for dozens of aspiring writers to showcase their skills. The grant award is $1,800.
- In recent years, high school wrestling programs have embraced the entry of girls into the sport, and, thanks to Alvin Metcalf, Fort Scott High School is no exception. This $2,100 grant will help the athletic department accommodate women by adjusting facilities and buying appropriate uniforms and equipment.
- Studies consistently show that parental involvement is one of the most important factors in student outcomes. Toward this end, the Foundation will support Instructional coach Brenda Hill who is providing Family Math and Literacy Nights at Eugene Ware Elementary School with a $1,500 grant award.
- For years, Chamber Executive Lindsay Madison has given administrative support to the Career Exploration Mentor Program at Fort Scott High School, serving dozens of students. Working with Lewis Dunkeson, she will match local businessmen and women with high school students that need a mentor in their lives to give them a vision of what is possible while living and working in Fort Scott. This $1,500 grant will provide some of the logistical costs.
- Breann Martin is the event coordinator of the 2nd Floor Festival of Arts and Ideas, designed to cultivate a passion for the arts within our schools and community, and begin to identify Fort Scott as a regional hub for ideas and creativity. $1,875 will provide visiting artist fees, marketing, the venue and supplies for the event.
About the Fort Scott Area Community Foundation, taken from its website:
“We help our donors establish long-term charitable funds, using the most tax-advantaged methods, to benefit their causes and our community.
The Fort Scott Area Community Foundation was founded in 2007 by a group of citizens interested in encouraging philanthropy and strengthening communities. As a local center for philanthropy, the FSACF works with individuals, families, corporations, private foundations and not-for-profit organizations to carry out their charitable objectives and address emerging community issues. The FSACF is an affiliate of both the Community Foundation of Southeast Kansas and the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation.”