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W&L Announces First Recipients of Community Grants

Washington and Lee University’s Community Grants Committee met recently to evaluate its first round of proposals from local agencies and organizations. Established this spring, the purpose of the program is to support non-profit organizations in the Lexington/Rockbridge community.

“I am very gratified by the response the community has had to the Community Grants Program,” said W&L President Ken Ruscio. “We know the need is there, and W&L is proud to continue to play an important role as a partner in supporting an array of community needs and programs.”

A total of 22 proposals for a combined $204,945.00 in requests were submitted from 21 organizations. “The committee received a broad spectrum of requests,” said committee chair Jim Farrar Jr. “We wish we had resources to support all requests for assistance, but, of course, that simply isn’t possible. Going forward, we look forward to learning more about local needs so that W&L can determine how best to respond.”

The committee made $25,000 worth of grants in the initial round. Ten organizations received grants averaging $2,500. Those organizations are:

  • Boxerwood Education Association, for its general operational support and education
  • Central School PTA, for playground equipment
  • Rockbridge Area Hospice, to help create a fund to assist those who cannot pay for services
  • Project Horizon, for public education, volunteer training and hot line support
  • Rockbridge Area Conservation Council, to upgrade their computer and communications
  • Rockbridge Area Occupational Center, to help establish their new product venture, College Care Packages
  • Rockbridge Area Relief Association – Valley Program for Aging Services partnership, to help create a fund to assist those who cannot pay utility bills
  • Rockbridge County Fair, to help bring the Va. Science Museum’s Space Travel exhibit to the fair
  • YMCA, to help fund a fundraising feasibility study
  • Youth Literacy Program, to help Rockbridge County library train volunteer reading tutors and purchase books for children

The program will begin its first full year on July 1, coinciding with the start of the University’s fiscal year. The University will award $50,000 during the program’s 2008-09 cycle. While there is no minimum request amount, the committee expects grants to range from $500 to $25,000. Requests above $25,000 will require additional review processes.

Proposals may be submitted at any time but will be reviewed semiannually, at the end of the calendar year and at the end of the fiscal year. Submission deadlines for the 2008-09 fiscal year are November 14, 2008 and June 12, 2009.

Requests for the proposal guidelines should be sent to kbrinkley@wlu.edu or call 540-458-8417.