Branford Community Foundation Reaches All Time High Funding Record

GulliversThe Branford Community Foundation (“BCF”), the only local permanent endowment support for Branford’s philanthropic needs, programs and services, has committed an all-time high of $111,190 in grant funding in 2017. An increase in grant requests, emphasis on more effective and prudent grant making strategies to provide diversified needs support, and a conservative spending policy designed to preserve and build endowment assets, all contributed to the record breaking investment in Branford. 

BCF provided 16 grants through its competitive grant making process ranging from basic needs (such as hot meals at the Community Dining Room) to civic engagement (the James Blackstone Library Capital Campaign). A complete list of the 2017 competitive grant awards to date according to type of project is listed below.

Programs to provide Basic Needs—food, emergency financial assistance, fuel and heat support, and shelter—include:

  • Community Dining Room ($5,000) to support daily lunch, Saturday breakfast, Tuesday family dinner, Wednesday take-out dinner, and home delivery services.
  • Volunteer Services Center ($22,900) for a capital project to claim and renovated a portion of the police garage for additional work/storage space for the Clothing Bank and Community Dining Room.

scholarshipEfforts that support Youth, including children in need, access to summer camps, and scholarships, include grants to:

  • Branford High School Choral Program ($3,500) for their “Peace Project” initiative that culminated in a concert at Woolsey Hall at Yale.
  • The Child Development Center of the First Congregational Church ($3,000) to help complete community playground renovations.
  • Branford Early Childhood Collaborative ($2,000) for work to identify and assist families who are isolated, living hand-to-mouth and on the periphery of the community.
  • Camp Hazen ($1,000) for financial assistance for Branford campers to attend camp.
  • Branford High School Scholarships ($19,500) to 13 Branford High School graduates pursuing higher education.

Initiatives that support the Environment, including the shoreline and animal and wildlife support, included grants to:

  • Daniel Cosgrove Animal Camp ($1,000) to provide educational guests for campers and to support scholarships for Branford children to attend.
  • East Shore Regional Health Department ($2,500) to support the first fully electric, solar powered pump-out boat.

Programs that support the Arts—music, dance, theatre and community performances—included awards to:

  • Shoreline Arts Alliance ($1,000) to support a presentation of live theatre for free to the shoreline community.
  • St. Mary School Junior Fife & Drum ($1,000) for new uniforms and instruments for the only youth fife and drum program on the shoreline.

SOCTEfforts around Health, such as mental health services, senior services, social services, and substance abuse prevention, included grants to:

  • Clifford Beers Guidance Clinic ($5,000) for intensive case management services to children and families living in Branford who are experiencing behavioral health disorders.
  • Project Graduation ($1,150) to support a safe, gun and substance-free event for graduating seniors of Branford High School on the night of graduation.
  • Orchard House ($2,500) to support guided art therapy sessions to seniors.
  • Special Olympics Connecticut ($2,000) to help purchase new uniforms for the newly merged “Central Shoreline” team.

Initiatives to promote Civic Engagement, such as historical preservation, volunteerism, and community events and enhancements, include grants to:

  • James Blackstone Memorial Library Capital Campaign ($100,000 over four years) to encourage smaller donations from community members to support their critical renovation.
  • Shoreline Trolley Museum ($850) to repair damage to the compressor of car #865 from Hurricane Sandy, and leverage FEMA funding.

In addition to the competitive grant awards identified above, BCF has also committed to supporting professional development programs for non-profits (the Shoreline Nonprofit Workshop Series), sponsoring a number of local events and community programs, and providing grant awards from designated funds.

While BCF is proud of its community investments, the 2017 grant awards to date have resulted in early satisfaction of the total funding budget for the 2017 quarterly competitive grant cycle. Grant applications for the September 30, 2017 deadline will be postponed for consideration to the December 31, 2017 deadline.

This record-breaking level of community investment is only made possible by those who generously support the Branford Community Foundation’s mission to “connect people who care with the causes that matter to them.” Thanks to this generosity, our investments into the community continue to grow and we are able to respond to needs as they arise. For more information, visit our website at