2016 weGive365 Grant Award Winners
Bolder Options is receiving $1,000 toward their request for running shoes for their program’s participants. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 70% of the kids that Bolder Options works with come to their first meeting in shoes that are way too small. Sometimes the boys show up in their mom's running shoes because they've outgrown their own and the family can't afford a new pair. Shoes that fit are a basic need for kids, and for our kids - who we encouraging to get out and be active with their mentors - it is essential.
The Diversity Council is receiving $1,000 toward the establishment of a human library in Rochester. The Human Library™, an initiative developed by the World Culture Center in Denmark, allows people and organizations to check out human "books" for a unique learning experience. If you want to know what it's like to be, say, a single mother, a homeless person, a refugee, or a gay man, you check one out of the library and they share their personal story and answer your questions. The most powerful aspect of the experience is the candid and extremely personal interaction that occurs as experiences are shared and misconceptions addressed. The model has proven to increase empathy, not just toward the individual from the “bookshelf” but toward human beings in general.
RideAbility serves families of children or adults with special needs; providing horseback riding and related activities. RideAbility creates an environment of fun and therapy where everyone is able! RideAbility started in 1997 after the birth of a child with spina bifada, and research into therapeutic horseback riding.
RideAbility is receiving $1,000 to support and improve the Annual RideAbility Student Horse Show at the end of each horseback riding season. Some of RideAbility’s goals for the show are:
- Providing families with an opportunity to see their student’s new skills in action
- A way to motivate students to learn new skills during their riding classes
- Creating an environment that parallels group lessons but teaches the arts of “showing”
- And creates community support for RideAbilitiy’s programs
Rochester Student Health Services’ Rochester ALC Clinic
The Rochester ALC Clinic is receiving $1,000 to deliver cognitive-behavioral skills building programming to at-risk secondary students at the Rochester Alternative Learning Center. They plan to purchase 50 participant manuals for the COPE2Thrive program. This is an affordable, relatively brief, cost-effective, empirically-supported curriculum designed to help teens deal with anxiety, stress, depression, and risky behaviors by showing them how to develop the skills needed to start thinking and behaving in more positive ways.
Ronald McDonald House of Rochester
The Ronald McDonald House is receiving $1,000 to expand the Angels of Inspiration program, as a way to honor the memory of children who pass away and offer support to their families. When they learn that a Ronald McDonald House child has passed away, the family is given a gift of a stained-glass heart as an expression of our sympathy. In 2015, 17 Ronald McDonald House families suffered the loss of their child and received this gift in remembrance.
In 2016, they will begin giving each of these families devastated by the loss of their child a $50 gift card to be used as needed. The Ronald McDonald House has the privilege and the responsibility of helping people through some of the most difficult times of their lives. While this small gesture won’t erase their pain, they feel this act would be appreciated.
Sports Mentorship Academy
Truancy Response Assisting Challenging Kids (TRACK) is a school based intervention mentoring program that meets once a week during lunch or recess for students who are involved in the juvenile court system due to excessive absences from school. The main objective of the program is to provide students with extra social and emotional support during a very challenging and confusing time in their lives. TRACK identifies student strengths to help them gain self-confidence, improve their self-image and help them better identify and manage daily social, emotional and academic challenges.
Sports Mentorship Academy is receiving $1,000 to take the kids who have good attendance to Bowlocity and the movies as an incentive.
Zumbro Valley Health Center
Research shows that lack of adequate transportation is one of the greatest barriers people at or near federal poverty levels face to accessing mental health services. This can frequently lead to missed or rescheduled appointments, delayed care and missed or delayed medication use. This, in turn, results in poorer management of chronic illness and thus poorer health outcomes.
ZVHC is receiving $1,000 to purchase bus passes and taxi coupons for clients who would otherwise have no option for transportation to and from our facility.
Wednesday evening, January 21, 2015 an informational meeting was held on the impact of the 2014 weGive365 grants! Here are some of the highlights:
Rochester Women's Shelter - will use a $1,000 grant to expand their children's program. This will include childcare, support groups and summer activities!
Elder Network - offered free companion services to 9 area seniors who otherwise could not afford them.
Rochester Public Library - piloted an innovative reading program designed for children with autism, titled Sensory Story Time, which aims to increase their literacy.
Rochester Rotary Risers - will expand their yearly reading celebration from 2 to 5 elementary schools. The celebration is designed to boost children's confidence in their ability to read.
The Reading Center - partnered with Civic League Day Nursery on a pre-school aged reading program that implemented new kindergarten preparedness techniques. The program impacted 89 children through the training of 15 staff members.
Channel One Regional Food Bank - used their $1,000 grant to provide 14 backpacks of food for children for an entire year!