Press Release: Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation Awards $1.5 Million in Spring Grants Cycle

Sheffield, Mass. — The Board of Directors of Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation today announced the recipients of the first round of grantmaking for 2015. The foundation distributed a total of $194,242 in grants to individuals and nonprofits in the four-county region it serves, and grants totaling over $1.3 million from donors who have established charitable funds at the foundation.

Through its competitive grantmaking, the foundation awarded grants from the William and Margery S. Barrett Fund for Adams, Cheshire and Savoy; the Central Berkshire Fund; the Fund for Columbia County; the Alice and Richard Henriquez Memorial Fund/Youth World Awareness Program; the Northwest Corner Fund; the South County Fund; the Madeleine B. Wildes Fund; and three educational enrichment funds.

Education & Enrichment: Grants to regional schools, school districts and students totaled $79,495. Select grant recipients include: in Berkshire County, Lanesborough Elementary School received $16,000 to purchase iPad minis and other digital resources for the fifth- and sixth-grade students; in Columbia County, the Hudson High School Art and Humanities departments received $5,000 to support field trips to various arts, architectural and historical sites in the area; in Dutchess County, Evelyn Grainger received $1,500 towards a community service trip to Guatemala; in Litchfield County, Daisy Torres received $1,000 to work on small-scale development projects in Costa Rica. Evelyn and Daisy will embark on their respective service trips this summer.

Health & Human Services: Grants to nonprofits providing social and human services totaled $11,197. Select grant recipients include: in Columbia County, FASNY Museum of Firefighting received $1,500 for its fire safety programs for young children; in Litchfield County, Housatonic Youth Service Bureau received $4,000 to support its counseling services for children, youth and families in the town of Salisbury.

Arts & Culture: A total of $13,050 was awarded to arts and cultural organizations. In Columbia County, Bindlestiff Family Variety Arts, Inc. received $1,000 to supports its circus arts education programs, and Hudson Opera House received $1,500 for its creative papermaking and cooking classes.
 
Nonprofit Capacity Building: Four area funds, the TriMix Foundation and anonymous Columbia County donors contributed a total of $80,000 for nine nonprofit organizations to participate in Berkshire Taconic’s Nonprofit Learning Program, an intensive training course for executives and board leaders to learn best practices in governance, management and fund development. Led by internationally recognized nonprofit management consultant Simone Joyaux, this team-based program is comprehensive in scope, with five group training sessions, 12 hours of private consultation and a $2,000 implementation grant. The following organizations from Berkshire, Columbia and Litchfield counties are participating: Berkshire Nursing Families; Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity; Construct, Inc.; Dalton Council on Aging; Friend of the Dalton COA; Multicultural BRIDGE; Great Mountain Forest Corporation; Family Resource Center of Columbia County; and the 21st Century Fund for Housatonic Valley Regional High School.

Berkshire Taconic, in partnership with Harvard Business School, has selected Shaun Cusson of Hillcrest Educational Center, Inc. and Carolyn Valli of Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity to attend HBS’s ‘Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management’ program, an intensive six-day program for nonprofit CEOs, presidents or executive directors who are responsible for shaping the direction, policies and major programs of their organizations. Taught by a team of Harvard faculty members who specialize in nonprofit management and valued at $5,250, this program focuses on how shifting economic realities affect organizations and how leaders must be equipped with core management concepts to successfully respond to internal and external changes.

A full list of grants can be found at www.berkshiretaconic.org/springgrants




About Hammertown
About Hammertown
Hammertown Barn Event Committee
Back Row: Lael Locke, Hila Richardson, co-chair Gloria Callen, Patricia Jean, Amy Gold
Middle Row: Susan Hillel, Katherine Martucci, Wendy Curtis, Palmer Irving, Beth Ledy
Front row: Diana Hurley, Joan Osofsky, co-chair Sally Berg
About Chatham
About Chatham
Photo of Chatham Middle School by John Dolan.
About Ellsworth Kelly
About Ellsworth Kelly
Ellsworth Kelly. Photo (c) Jack Shear
About Construct Inc
About Construct Inc
Construct, Inc’s Cultivate Community Project was supported by BTCF’s South Berkshire County Fund.
About Elders Services Meals on Wheels
About Elders Services Meals on Wheels
Elders Services Meals on Wheels Program supported by the William J. and Margery S. Barrett Fund for Adams, Cheshire and Savoy.
About Summer Sundays
About Summer Sundays
Summer Sundays at Six Street Festival supported by the Fund for Williamstown.
About Northeast Community Center
About Northeast Community Center
The Northeast Community Center is supported by BTCF’s Northeast Dutchess Fund.
About Teen Theatre
About Teen Theatre
The Teen Theatre Project at the Hudson Opera House supported by the Fund for Columbia County.
About UNITY
About UNITY
The UNITY Youth Leadership Program: youth receive training on leadership development - including communication, conflict resolution, diversity, planning and decision making is supported by the Robert and James Hardman Fund.
About Great Barrington
About Great Barrington
The Great Barrington Land Conservancy restores the Housatonic River Walk with help from BTCF’s Berkshire Environmental Endowment Fund.
About Mary-Ellen
About Mary-Ellen
Mary-Ellen’s artwork involves reusing and reconfiguring natural manmade materials. She was awarded BTCF’s Tupelo Award.