by June Portnoy
Over 150 community service leaders, representatives of non-profit organizations, and local government officials attended Foundations Community Partnership’s (FCP) “Partnership in Youth Services” luncheon ceremony held at the Doylestown Country Club on October 16th.
The event honored 12 non-profit community programs that are making a difference in the lives of local children throughout Bucks County.
The organizations were awarded monetary grants of $3,000 each.
“Foundations is proud to offer community grants for the 15th year in a row through our Partnership in Youth Services Program,” said Foundations Executive Director, Ron Bernstein. “It is very rewarding to support the Bucks County non-profits that are fulfilling the health and human service needs of our young people.”
Athletes Helping Athletes in Richboro will use its funding for a new therapeutic equestrian program for special needs children, who will be paired with students throughout Bucks County to experience therapeutic riding.
Bowman’s Hill Wildlife Preserve in New Hope will use the grant for its Children’s Reading Program, which serves more than 300 children and their families with a renewed focus on special needs children.
Each session has a unique theme for reading children’s books about the natural environment, followed by nature hikes on the trails in search of the plants and animals in the stories.
Bristol Riverside Theater will use its grant for ARTrageous, its six-week summer program for at-risk youth in Bristol.
The Bucks County Children’s Museum in New Hope will use its grant to support educational programming for field trips and “Exploration for All” free open houses for children with autism spectrum disorders.
Central Bucks Family YMCA in Doylestown will use its grant for its “Darkness to Light” initiative to identify and train 13 representatives from youth-service organizations and/or county residents as facilitators in the Darkness to Light program.
These volunteers will, in turn, be asked to provide a minimum of one free training session per month for the next 18 months to at least 10 adult Bucks County residents in how to recognize, prevent and react responsibly to cases of child sexual abuse.
Chandler Hall in Newtown will use its grant for music education for its Child Development Program (CDP).
The grant will support a year-round music program for CDP participants ages one to five, and a theater workshop for youth ages six to 12 at Chandler Hall’s Summer Camp.
Gilda’s Club Delaware Valley, Inc. in Warminster will apply its grant for two programs in its Noogieland, kid support programs for children ages four to 12 who have cancer or have a close family member with cancer. Its “Straight Talk About Cancer” for teens up to 18-years-old, provides high school students a chance to meet twice a month at their school with their peers who are dealing with cancer in their lives.
NHS (New Hope Cares) and P.S.I.C. (Positive Student Interactions and Choices) in New Hope will use its grant for its Positive Youth Development Project. Alexa Botelho, a New Hope-Solebury student, spearheaded P.S.I.C. in 2012 when she was a sophomore. It strives to eliminate the glorification of drugs and alcohol by promoting alternative positive alternatives. P.S.I.C works with NHS Cares to reach out to students about the consequences of drug and alcohol use.
Peaceful Living’s Creative Gifts Montgomery County location has been successful in using iPads to help individuals with autism and other disabilities communicate with their caregivers and others in the community. Its grant will help bring that technology to new clients at its New Britain site.
The Council Rock Coalition for Healthy Youth in Newtown will partner with all three middle schools in the Council Rock School District to conduct a Social Norms Campaign on underage drinking prevention. The Coalition will use its grant for this campaign.
S.A.G.E. (Senior Adults for Greater Education) in Newtown will use its grant to help Palisades School District train, place and support low-income senior volunteers in Palisades’ elementary schools. These volunteers will assist at-risk children who need academic support and social skills.
Woods Services in Langhorne will use its grant for its Girl Power Club, a weekly after-school program led by a mental health professional and an educator from Planned Parenthood. Participants of this club will include adolescent girls residing at Woods who have special needs with developmental and mental health issues who are at risk for teen pregnancy, STDs, abuse, low self-esteem, alcohol/drug problems and school drop out.
In addition to these community awards, Newtown resident Danielle Morabito, received Foundation’s Morris M. Davis Award, a $1,500 scholarship given annually to a student intern whose contributions to the community are judged to be an outstanding example.
Danielle, who graduated from Council Rock High School North in 2010, worked this past summer at the Bucks County Children’s Museum through FCP’s Summer Youth Corps and is currently attending Messiah College.
For more information about FCP visit www.fcpartnership.org.
PHOTO CAPS: 1. Danielle Morabito, of Newtown, recipient of the Morris M. Davis Award
2. Beryl Katz (right), Executive Director of S.A.G.E., and Kathi Sherzer, Associate Director of S.A.G.E.
3. Katherine Folk (left), Senior Director of Philanthropy at Chandler Hall, and Laura Hudson, Child Development Program Director at Chandler Hall, accepting their grant.
4. Debbie Moscovitz, from Council Rock Coalition for Healthy Youth