Field-of-Interest Grants Help With Specific Needs

In an earlier posting, we described half of the 10 Field-of-Interest grant program awards made for 2009-10. Here are the other grants made with the support of  generous donors interested in offering specific types of assistance to people in our communities.
  • The Leona Mackler Fund was established to support the Foster Grandparent program in Higginsville.  This year, the program will receive $610 to provide transportation for volunteers as well as equipment and material needs.
  • The Jerry and Tac Caplan Mid-Life Initiative Fund will provide $1,239.25 for an individual currently living in The Kitchen’s Missouri Hotel.  The Caplans established the fund to provide financial assistance to economically challenged women who want to change their lives through education, specialized training or job skill and presentation needs. The woman will receive restorative dental services and dentures to help improve her job interview and employment opportunities.
  • The Helen M. Delano Fund provides financial assistance to uniformed police officers and firefighters who have been injured or killed in the line of duty. If, thankfully, circumstances do not match the criteria during an award year, assistance can be provided for needs created through individual or family illnesses, catastrophic losses through fire or storms or other pressing needs.  This year, the Delano Fund will provide $2,844 to the family of a uniformed police trainer whose finances have been challenged by the costs of a long illness.

The two remaining Field-of-Interest Grants are structured to accept year-round applications, with awards made available for requests to the individual programs as they are received:

  • A very generous anonymous donor established the Senior Dreams program to provide individuals under Hospice care a chance to live out their dreams, similar to the “Make a Wish” program.  The wide variety of “Dreams” being granted include providing transportation and equipment for an individual who wanted to go fishing in the Cape Fair area, and a visit to family in the Portland, Ore., area.  The “Dreams” vary both in geography and cost, but the thank-you messages sent by the participants all echo similar sentiments of profound thanks for the opportunity.
  • The Ellis Fund was established by a donor in honor of her son, who died of pediatric cancer.  The donor understood the financial hardships placed on a family when faced with a life-threatening diagnosis and wanted to provide assistance for those families in need.  This year, one family has greatly benefited with assistance for the hotel stays required for multiple visits to St. Louis Children’s Hospital for diagnostic tests, treatment and follow-up testing.  A second family was faced with a series of financial hardships as a result of a child’s illness and eventual death. The Ellis Fund provided financial assistance throughout the child’s illness, as well as helping with funeral expenses.