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CFSI awards $80,000 for Harrison, Floyd and Clark

Opening gifts of money gave 25 non-profit organizations in Harrison, Floyd and Clark counties a jump on the holidays this year. The Community Foundation of Southern Indiana recently wrapped up its 11th year of holding money in trust and giving a portion back to the community by distributing $80,000 in grants this holiday season.
The atmosphere was festive at CFSI’s annual awards breakfast Dec. 19 that feted representatives of the agencies that were named grant recipients. Debbie More, CFSI board member, chaired the grants committee composed of community volunteers from all three counties who made the selections.
All area non-profits had been invited to apply for the funding, which this year was given to community service agencies (42 percent), health and human services causes (36 percent), the arts (14 percent), and education (10 percent). While some agencies are designed to serve their own counties, 45 percent of the recipients serve multiple counties.
In addition to the $100,000 that CFSI gave to each of the counties in its service area last spring to launch an early-warning siren system, these most recent gifts bring the Foundation’s grants total to more than $5,430,600 since 1992. That amount includes nearly $1.5 million in scholarships since 1995.
“Our ability to award grants is a direct reflection of the outstanding philanthropic spirit of our residents,” said John Hartstern, CFSI’s president of asset development and donor relations. “Because individuals, businesses and organizations have established endowments to secure funding for future generations, everyone benefits and our communities become stronger.”
While several endowments through CFSI exist for specific purposes named by those who establish them, many donors place money with the Foundation for general community uses, which have generated these funds to give away. Donors of any amount receive immediate tax benefits, but CFSI holds the principal in trust and uses a portion of the earned interest to award such grants each winter.
In a special category, a field-of-interest fund created through CFSI years ago by Commerce America enables the sponsor to designate an area to which their donation will be given each year. This year’s focus is on social services and vocational education, and $5,000 each was awarded to Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Kentuckiana and Boys and Girls Clubs of Kentuckiana.
The Big Brothers/Big Sisters’ grant will be used for a school-based mentoring program at Corydon Elementary School and an after-school program at Corydon Central Junior High and the Gerdon Youth Center.
Other grants benefiting Harrison County include:
Amy’s House/Children’s Advocacy Center – $2,778 for audio-visual equipment for taping interviews with children who have been sexually assaulted.
Arts Council of Southern Indiana – $4,000 for a program led by jazz artist Jamey Aebersold and three others who will present a 45-minute program in 24 schools across Harrison, Floyd and Clark counties.
Blue River Services – $2,865 for a training video for clients with developmental or learning disabilities that result in communication skill problems.
Bridgepointe Goodwill & Easter Seals – $2,180 for two desktop computers for its office skills training program.
Center for Women and Families – $4,000 for one-time emergency assistance to families who are living in and/or exiting the emergency shelter.
Furthering Youth Inc./Gerdon Youth Center – $2,454 for carpet and tile in its main traffic area.
Harrison County Community Services – $3,000 for the Vision Quest program for the elderly.
Junior Achievement of Kentuckiana – $3,000 to bring economic education programs to 400 young people in the three counties.
LifeSpan Resources – $5,000 for matching funds for two lift-equipped vans to transport the elderly in all three counties.
Metro United Way – $1,100 for a collaborative effort between Information Link of Southern Indiana and Crisis and Information Center of Seven Counties Services (with Metro United Way as fiscal agent) as partial funding to establish a Regional 211 Call Center. The project will create a human services database for Clark, Floyd, Harrison and Scott counties.
YMCA of Harrison County – $3,000 for the campaign for a YMCA in Corydon.
The amount of grants is determined year by year, and applications for the 2003 cycle will be available to non-profits next fall, according to Christine Harbeson, CFSI’s program officer.
For information about opportunities to place money with CFSI or to apply for grants, call 1-812-948-4662 or toll-free at 1-888-388-2374. The non-profit Foundation has fostered philanthropy and built assets for the common good since 1991.