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Groups get money from Community Foundation

May 08, 2003|by TARA REILLY

tarar@herald-mail.com

Art Richards told the stories Wednesday of children who stay home from school because they don't have the clothes or the supplies to attend.

He said he knew of one child who went to school only every other day because she had to share her clothes with her sister. Other youngsters lack basic daily hygiene products such as toothbrushes and soap, he said.

Richards, of Children In Need, got some financial help Wednesday to assist children throughout Washington County in similar situations.

The organization was one of six to receive grants from the Community Foundation of Washington County, Md., Inc. at an awards ceremony at Four Points Sheraton.

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The Community Foundation distributed $25,372 to the organizations, including $3,500 to Children in Need.

Richards said the money will go toward back-to-school clothing and supplies for low-income children.

"We need to get the kids in school," Richards said. "If our first generation doesn't want to go to school, then we're all in trouble."

The Community Foundation is a nonprofit group that manages funds set up by members of the community and annually distributes the money to local charities and nonprofit organizations, according to information provided by the foundation.

The Boys & Girls Club of Washington County received a $5,372 grant for a diversity program that will train 25 teens to make community presentations addressing discrimination and prejudice.

The diversity program will start May 15.

"This is going to be really good for us," Club Executive Director Jim Deaner said of the grant award.

He said promoting diversity throughout the community is important to the teenagers who will be participating.

"Each kid is an individual," Deaner said.

The awards ceremony marked the first time the Community Foundation distributed the grants to the groups of its choice, Executive Director Brad Sell said. The money had been going solely to groups endorsed by donors, he said.

Merle Elliott, chairman of the foundation's Grants Allocation Committee, said the foundation received 33 requests for grants. Those were narrowed down to the six, which were awarded Wednesday.

Groups providing programs that focus on arts and culture and the disadvantaged received the grants, Elliott said.

"We hope that our efforts have been worthwhile," he said.

The other groups that received grants were:

  • Potomac Case Management, $5,000.

  • Girls Inc., $6,000.

  • REACH Caregivers, $1,500.

  • The Center for Business and Training, $4,000.
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