Eight local projects receive WAF grantsWORTHINGTON — The Worthington Area Foundation awarded $4,300 in grants to eight area organizations Wednesday at First State Bank Southwest. Area organizations applied earlier this year for grants to be used toward projects that will benefit the community.
By: Laura Grevas, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — The Worthington Area Foundation awarded $4,300 in grants to eight area organizations Wednesday at First State Bank Southwest.
Area organizations applied earlier this year for grants to be used toward projects that will benefit the community.
Beve Vajgrt, the WAF secretary, said the foundation received about 25 applications for grant funds, about the same number as last year.
The International Festival board, a past grant recipient, was awarded $530.
“We’re going to be using it for children’s activities,” explained board member Cheryl Avenel-Navara. “Last year, we were able to do a global village theme for the children’s activities, and next year we’re hoping to expand that with more countries.” Through the activities, “the children are learning a little bit of language, culture of the country, games, food customs,” she detailed.
The Stingrays, the Worthington Area YMCA’s swimming team, received $300 toward the purchase of a touch pad timing system for the pool. It was the organization’s first year receiving funds. Also receiving grants for the first time were Catholic Charities and the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce.
“A number of years ago, the south side of I-90 was lined with flags from various nations,” said Diane Schettler of the chamber. “We’re going to resurrect that with various cultures we have in Worthington now.” The organization received $1,000 toward the project, which Schettler said could be completed by July 2010.
The awards come from interest earned on the WAF endowment, a group of unrestricted funds. Wednesday, groups received grants from the Worthington Community Foundation Fund, the Wolff Memorial Fund and the Ellen Baker-Merrigan Fund, all parts of the endowment.
“When I thought that I would have the opportunity to invest in the community, I didn’t even know for sure if I could contribute to the Worthington Area Foundation,” said Baker-Merrigan.
She set up her fund through the Southwest Initiative Foundation (SWIF). “It’s really a great way to get your fund organized,” she said. “It’s a great way to invest in the community.”