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RECENT grants

The Wells County Foundation Announces Grants from Third 2022 Cycle

The Wells County Foundation, Inc.  Board of Directors recently approved grants totaling $85,238.15 for the third and final grant cycle in 2022.  A total of 15 grants were awarded as follows:


American Red Cross of Northeast Indiana - $5,000 – This grant will provide partial funding for the Home Fire Relief program in Wells County.  The Red Cross connects with survivors of home fires immediately to assess their most pressing needs, often including shelter, food, clothing, prescriptions, eyeglasses, toiletries and other critical items lost in the fire.  Financial support is also provided.  All of these services are provided to Wells County residents who have experienced a home fire free-of-charge.  During fiscal year 2022, the Red Cross provided assistance to 81 individuals in Wells County through the Home Fire Relief program.  Grant made from the Margaret Powers Unrestricted Endowment Fund.


Bluffton Fire Department - $7,000- This grant will provide partial funding for the purchase of an insulation vacuum and trailer.  Once a fire is extinguished, the crew’s work is not complete.  Ensuring there is no fire extension in any part of the house is a necessity.  Ensuring there is no fire extension can include but is not limited to removing contents from rooms to removal of all insulation from the ceilings and walls.  Currently, insulation is removed using shovels, brooms and similar equipment.  The insulation vacuum will allow fire fighters to remove the insulation more efficiently, safely and with less manpower.  Grant made from the Charles and Hildreth Hissem Endowment Fund


Bluffton Parks & Recreation Department - $3,745 – This grant will provide funding for the purchase of a scoreboard at Jefferson Park.  Currently, approximately 200 youth participate in three levels through the league that utilizes Jefferson Park:  training camps, t-ball and minor league.  The Foundation’s financial support of this purchase will assist in keeping the league fees reasonable for families whose children participate in the league.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Fund.


Brok’n Axoles Car Club - $500 – This grant will provide funding for the Brok’n Axoles Cruisin’ for Christmas Event.  Through this event, underprivileged fifth graders are selected to purchase gifts for their family along with needed items for themselves.  Each child will be partnered with a fire fighter and a member of the Brok’n Axoles, and given $125 for their shopping.  Twenty children will participate in this event.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Fund.


Creative Arts Council of Wells County - $6,035.15 - This grant will provide funding for the rights and royalties for the productions of It’s a Wonderful Life; and Leading Ladies.  It’s a Wonderful Life was  performed December 2-4 at Life Community Church.  Leading Ladies will be performed February 17-18 at Life Community Church.  Through productions such as these, the Wells Community Theatre provides a constructive outlet for community members to exercise their creativity and a supportive group for people young and old with which to identify.  In addition, it provides a great source of entertainment for Wells County residents to enjoy.  Grant made from the Elizabeth Patton Unrestricted Endowment Fund and the Edward and Henrietta Goetz Unrestricted Endowment Fund.


Creative Arts Council of Wells County – up to $4,208 – This grant will provide $1 for $1 matching funds to the Creative Arts Council for the purchase of a new dance studio subfloor.  The two rooms currently in use for dance studio space have concrete flooring which is both uncomfortable and potentially dangerous for dance students.  The Council desires to purchase dance studio sub flooring to install in the dance studios, creating a professional, safe environment.  The flooring is portable, so can be transported to other venues for community performances.  The Foundation will match contributions designated for the flooring to the Creative Arts Council $1 for $1 up to $4,208.  The matching grant opportunity expires December 1, 2023.  Grant to be made from the Unrestricted Endowment Fund.


Family Centered Services, Inc. - $8,000 - This grant will provide major funding for the 2023 Youth As Resources program.  Youth As Resources, governed by a board of youth and adults, provides grants to young people to design and carry out service projects that address specific community needs.  Youth As Resources is an outlet for young people to be problem solvers, learning to become good citizens and giving back to their community.   In 2021, 22 students participated in the Youth as Resources Board.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Endowment Fund.


Junior Achievement of Northern Indiana - $7,000 – This grant will provide funding for JA to send 11 classes (approximately 250 students) to JA BizTown.  Prior to participating in BizTown, students work through four units:  financial literacy, community and economy, work readiness and business management.  BizTown is the culmination of their units where students are given the opportunity to practice their learning as they work with teams to operate their businesses.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Endowment Fund.


Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northeast Indiana - $2,500 – This grant will provide funding support to underwrite expenses of Wells County families who are staying at the Ronald McDonald House at the Parkview campus.  The House provides families with a hospitalized child a comfortable guest room, laundry facilities and a large kitchen where snacks, and home cooked evening meals are provided.  Wells County families stayed in the House an average of 84 nights from 2018 to 2021.  Families are not charged for their stays at the House.  Grant made from the Ellen Gerbers Unrestricted Endowment Fund.


Safe Families for Children - $15,000 – This grant will provide funding for programming assisting Wells County families in crisis.  Safe Families intervenes to provide improved outcomes for at-risk families/children by surrounding them with a safe community where they comprehensively address parental resilience, social connections, concrete support in times of need, knowledge of parenting and child development and social and emotional competence of children.  Through these services, the families’ crises are stabilized.  Safe Families anticipates reaching 20 children/18 Wells County parents through their programming in 2023.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Endowment Fund.


Stillwater Hospice - $6,000 – This grant will provide funding for Wells County residents receiving grief support, hospice and palliative care.  Visiting Nurse provides compassion, comfort and guidance through life’s journey.  Hospice services in residential homes, senior living apartments, assisted living and skilled nursing facilities are provided through Visiting Nurse.  Additionally palliative medicine consultations for individuals who have a serious or chronic condition are provided as well.  Wells County patients represent 6.5% of Visiting Nurse’s total patient census.  Many of the services provided by Visiting Nurse are not reimbursable by insurance companies.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Endowment Fund.


Wells County Food & Clothing Bureau - $5,000 – This grant was made to assist the Food and Clothing Bureau in maximizing their annual dollar-for-dollar matching opportunity.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Fund.


Wells County Council on Aging - $5,000 – This grant will provide funding to expand the Homemaker Program.  The Homemaker Program is designed to help keep the living environment clean and orderly by assisting with light housekeeping.  The ultimate goal is to maintain a clean, safe, and healthy living environment and keep the clients in their own homes as long as possible.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Endowment Fund.

Wells County Historical Society - $7,500 – This grant will provide funding for publishing a book chronicling the history of Wells County public schools through the period 1838 – 2022.  The books will be available for purchase, serving as a fundraiser for the Historical Society.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Fund.


Wells County Revitalization - $2,750 – This grant will provide funding for Manufacturing – an Introduction to Opportunity.  Through this program, students from the Bluffton, Norwell and Southern Wells High schools will have a unique opportunity to learn more about career opportunities in Wells County through field trips to a variety of local manufacturers.  They will tour several manufacturing facilities to learn what skills are needed and the education required for these advanced manufacturing careers.  Grant made from the Unrestricted Endowment Fund.

The Foundation considers grant proposals three times annually for those agencies seeking funding through the competitive grant process.  Funding for these grants comes from the unrestricted funds which are administered by the Foundation.  Donors with broad philanthropic interests find that an unrestricted fund in the community foundation is a simple and flexible way to accomplish their charitable objectives.  Contributing to an established unrestricted fund, or creating a new unrestricted fund is an excellent way to provide resources for grantmaking and help make a positive difference for the ever-changing needs in Wells County.

The Wells County Foundation, Inc. is a nonprofit public charity established in 1957 to serve donors, award grants, and provide leadership to improve Wells County forever.  Grants proposals to be considered for the next cycle are due to the Foundation office by February 15, 2023.

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