Competitive grants awarded Fall 2018

Arts and Culture

David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts

2018-2019 Straz Center Arts Education Partnerships Program,  $20,000

The Straz Center’s 2018-2019 Arts Education Partnerships Program will deliver high quality arts learning experiences to more than 3,500 disadvantaged K-12 children in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco and Manatee counties. Program activities will be tailored to the needs of more than 50 partnering schools, after-school programs, and service agencies, and will be delivered throughout the 2018-2019 school year.

Services will be delivered at no cost to all 52 partnering Title I schools and service agencies, including the Firehouse Cultural Center and RCMA Wimauma/Leadership Academy. Several partners also serve special-needs children, adults and seniors.

Florida Home Partnership

Bayou Pass Village Community Mural,  $10,000

Florida Home Partnership provides opportunity, education, upward mobility and stability by meeting the housing needs of low to moderate income individuals and families. In Bayou Pass Village 4, the back of a maintenance building is blank and faces a busy intersection. A community art project to paint a mural there will enable adults and children to engage in their community, and offer visually compelling community art for passers-by. FHP has a history of engaging its families in focus groups and playground installations to give them a voice and hands-on activities in the development of their communities. The project would be led by professional artist and muralist Michael Parker of Ruskin, who has a successful career in leading groups to conceptualize and paint large-scale murals. We are confident that Mr. Parker will help create a compelling image fitting for a self-help housing community.

Florida Museum of Photographic Arts

FMoPA Community Gallery,  $5,000

The FMoPA Community Gallery gives a voice to the artists in our community who do not have access to gallery shows or exhibition opportunities. We aim to represent minorities in our community, veterans as well as local and emerging artists. Every show that is hung in the Community Gallery supports local artists or causes that are relevant to the museum’s audience.

FMoPA hosts several calls for entry throughout the year to give emerging photographers a platform to exhibit their work in a museum setting. The goal is to support local artists and help them build their skills and resumes so that they can continue to make art.
The gallery also features shows that are culturally relevant to visitors such as Faces of Alzheimer’s (portraits of patients), Our Living Past (blues and soul jazz musicians for Black History Month), and Underwater Photography (conservationist photography of beautiful underwater creatures and their habitats).

Friends of Library-Hillsborough County, Inc.

SouthShore Regional Library John Crawford Art Education Studio Art Classes,  $4,000

The John Crawford Art Education Studio at the SouthShore Regional Library in Ruskin serves a diverse and growing community in the South Shore area, and the residents turn to their local library for access to resources and cultural experiences that may not otherwise be available to them. There are many residents of this rural area who cannot afford to pay for art classes or do not have transportation to seek art instruction outside of their community, and the library is able to provide professional art instruction to them for free.

Thanks to the generous support of the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay and the Friends of the SouthShore Regional Library, the local community has become accustomed to a robust offering of quality art classes at the library, even during the extended vacancy of the library’s art coordinator position. We are asking for funding to continue to provide free art classes for ages pre-K through adult.

Great Explorations Inc. 

Great Explorations’ Outreach Program,  $10,000

Great Explorations’ Outreach program is run by a team of educators known as the STEAM Team that takes learning on the road, directly into at-risk neighborhoods and schools. The Outreach team sets up mobile learning stations to explore STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math) concepts where children, teachers and families can conduct experiments, watch engaging staff-led shows, create original pieces of art utilizing nontraditional tools, and more.

The goal is to engage 9,500 children from underrepresented and vulnerable populations to take an active interest in their education by providing innovative ways to interpret the world around them through hands-on learning during free Outreaches at schools or in their neighborhoods.

SouthShore Arts Council

South Shore High School Art Exhibit,  $4,700

The annual juried High School art exhibit is displayed at Hillsborough Community College (HCC), South Shore Campus in Ruskin. The partnership with HCC provides a great exhibit space and increases the level of enthusiasm and inspiration. A local arts professional judges the submissions. The exhibit gives the students an opportunity to experience what it is like to exhibit their work in the community and also helps the school’s art department promote students dedicated to creating art. This will be the 9th year the all-volunteer SAC Board has sponsored and facilitated this Community Foundation-inspired event. This is the only event of its kind in the South Shore community.

The Florida Orchestra

Community Concerts,  $7,500

The Florida Orchestra is committed to ensuring that people of all ages and backgrounds have the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of and engagement in music. Numerous studies have affirmed the benefits of the arts on cognitive, academic, social and personal development. Through its outreach efforts, TFO aims to set up our local youth for success by providing high-quality arts enrichment experiences, educational resources and other support. Our outreach programming aims to eliminate the social and economic barriers to participation.

Through free outdoor performances and opportunities for community participation – as well as community engagement programming throughout the year – TFO works to cultivate an appreciation for orchestral music among people of all ages and backgrounds. These programs develop new audiences for live music and help sustain TFO as a cultural resource for all of Tampa Bay’s residents.

The Studio@620

The Studio@620 Artist Support,  $5,000

The Studio@620 engages more than 300 visual and performing artists in over 100 programs each year in all creative disciplines, providing meaningful income to artists. The Studio@620 has supported many emerging artists who have gone on to full-fledged careers, and provides the tools to help them broadcast their work to a larger audience. The result is a community that is enriched economically as well as culturally by having a thriving pool of talented artists among its citizens.

This grant would support programming that provides opportunities for emerging artists to showcase their work and that brings people from diverse cultural backgrounds and experiences together as artists, audiences and volunteers.

 

Education

AMIkids Y.E.S.

AMIkids Y.E.S,  $25,000

Students come from communities with high to severe concentration of poverty, single parent households, low academic achievement, teen parenthood and other risk factors that contribute to violent and delinquent behaviors. The cornerstone of AMIkids programs is its Personal Growth Model, which provides support for growth through education, counseling, and behavior changes.

The Personal Growth Model has been recognized by the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention as a promising model for improving the academic achievement of troubled youth and preventing delinquency. The boys at AMIkids Y.E.S. also work toward a high school diploma or GED and have a clear plan for school or work when they turn 18. AMIkids Y.E.S. also provides vocational education programs in food service and construction because we understand that to obtain and sustain a productive, crime-free life our kids must succeed in the classroom and acquire the skills needed to obtain employment after graduation.

AmSkills

Adult Pre-Apprenticeship Program,  $3,000

Recruiting and hiring qualified manufacturing employees in Florida and the Tampa Bay area is a growing problem. Our unique Tampa Bay Regional program started operations in 2015 to address the economic development workforce needs and to support the needs of manufacturers in our region.

AmSkills provides an alternative for people who are unemployed/underemployed and looking to increase their skills, career opportunities and wages. The AmSkills Pre-Apprenticeship Program is the first step to launching a career in manufacturing or other industries. It provides foundational skills training, manufacturing job exploration through hands-on projects, manufacturer tours and job placement at local companies, with on-going coaching and Apprentice training. In addition, AmSkills Pre-Apprenticeship Program is the perfect skills training program to assist veterans in transitioning to civilian careers.

Boys & Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay

Town & Country Initiative; Morgan Woods Elementary,  $20,000

A Boys & Girls Club presence was established with Town & Country Elementary in 2010. In 2014 a more robust on-site program was initiated where the school allowed BGCTB programming in classroom space and were encouraged to engage the students during the school year as mentors. In 2018, the new Hasham BGC opened on the school property, increasing number of youth. Collaborating on a pilot program with Champions for Children and the Hillsborough County School District, BGCTB is part of a cradle-to-12th grade pipeline in the Town & Country area schools.

This grant request includes the support of Morgan Woods Elementary as an on-site location. Originally intended to provide programming to 30 youth, the administration and parents pleaded with our agency to expand the program, as no other on-site after school program was available. Instead of the 30 budgeted, we have 124 youth, requiring additional part-time staff to augment the full-time person at Morgan Woods.

Boys & Girls Clubs of the Suncoast

Power Hour,  $10,000

The goal of Power Hour is to help young people develop academic, behavioral and social skills through homework completion, high-yield learning activities and tutoring. The program model is designed to create a climate of academic success in the Clubs during out of school time hours. In addition to conducting homework help for members in elementary, middle, and high school, the program implements fun and beneficial learning activities intended to instill a life-long love of learning.

Power Hour takes place for at least one hour a day during out of school time hours at all six Club locations across Pinellas County. This includes after-school hours and school breaks. It is also run during the summer using curriculum and tutors provided by United Way Suncoast and St. Petersburg College.

Champions for Children

Kids on the Block,  $10,000

Kids on the Block’s (KOTB) expertly trained puppeteers teach and interact with children via the puppets. The puppeteers elicit conversations with the children and answer their questions. The letters the students write to the puppets after each show are reviewed by the guidance counselors. If there is any indication that a child may be in a dangerous situation, the guidance counselor follows up appropriately with the child and, if necessary, with a report to Florida’s Child Abuse Hotline. Last school year (2017-2018), KOTB reached 25,487 students and parents with 360 performances and addressed 468 student concerns resulting in 13 bullying reports and 44 abuse disclosures.

Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office

Education about Economic Crimes Targeting Seniors,  $10,000

The Community Foundation of Tampa Bay conducted a needs assessment for the Sun City Center Community last year, which determined a need for more education about financial and economic frauds that target seniors for the Sun City Center Community. Residents of Sun City Center Community will be notified of the presentations through a community-wide mailing. In addition, the funding will be used to support economic crime training for a Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office deputy. This is the second year of this program. Over 500 Sun City Center Community residents attended last year’s program.

Hillsborough Community College Foundation 

Food 2 Finish,  $19,500

The objective of the Food 2 Finish program is to remove a significant barrier to college completion for many students: hunger. A taskforce created by HCC to take on this issue on our campuses has partnered with Feeding Tampa Bay. The taskforce has also consulted with experts at the University of South Florida and at our local hunger groups, including the Tampa Bay Network to End Hunger and the Hunger Action Alliance, to research available resources and discover best practices.

Support will help implement one of the immediate solutions, food pantries, and increase completion by helping our deserving, determined students stay fed and focused. The HCC Foundation requests support to stock food pantries at our Dale Mabry, Ybor and Brandon campuses at $6,500 per year per pantry.

Kiwanis of SouthShore

Key Club Leadership Training and Conference,  $6,000

This grant will be used toward sending 30 student leaders and five adult advisers from Lennard and East Bay high schools to The Kiwanis District Convention in Orlando, April 4-7, 2019. The cost to attend the 3-day leadership conference is approximately $12,250, or $350 per person. Additional funds needed (NOT covered by this grant) for this leadership training will be covered by student led fundraisers ($3,000), and work projects at Florida Historical Train Museum ($3,250).

The students will learn what hard work, teamwork, school spirit and giving back to the community involves — as this leadership training is totally run by seasoned Key Club leaders from all over the State of Florida. Our 30 students will come away equipped with better leadership skills and the inspiration to become leaders in their community.

Parents and Children Advance Together (PCAT) Literacy Ministries, Inc.

PCAT Literacy Program,  $21,383

The program is serving Wimauma and Ruskin Elementary Schools, both are on the state’s list of 300 lowest performing schools in 2017-2018. At Ruskin Elementary 84.6% of the students are minorities and 93% are economically disadvantaged. At Wimauma Elementary, 90.8% students are minorities and 97.3 are economically disadvantaged. At both schools, 34-35% of students are reading at grade level, compared to 53% for the county.

Expanding the programs at Ruskin and Wimauma elementaries created a need for more volunteers. A partnership with Encore Tampa Bay and Seniors in Service has helped, but additional resources are needed to engage and train more volunteers. PCAT proposes to hire a part-time contracted Volunteer Coordinator.

Pasco Education Foundation

The Investing in Teaching and Leading Excellence for Greater Student Achievement Project,  $40,000

During the 2014-15 school year, Pasco County Schools underwent a complete instructional diagnosis that confirmed a number of areas in need of improvement, particularly teacher and leader development. Resources and professional development aimed at elevating high academic standards are critical to the success of students, yet state funding for professional development is extremely limited, and federal funds typically used for teacher and leader development are at risk of deep cut and elimination.

Since 2014-15, Pasco County Schools has leveraged every opportunity available to make needed improvements, and we have seen promising gains, including a reduction in the number of schools considered “failing” (from 23 in 16-17 to 2 in 17-18). The significant gains in student achievement were due in large part to the partnership Pasco County Schools has with a consortium of Florida School Districts, the Pilot Florida Implementation Network (PFIN) through The New Teacher Project (TNTP). We are looking for ways to make these promising practices sustainable.

Pasco-Hernando State College Foundation

Concept College readiness program,  $10,000

Pasco-Hernando State College Concept College is a pre-collegiate program for students in 5th to 12th grade who are identified as being at-risk. The goal of Concept College is to increase interest in, and enrollment of at-risk high school students into college programs. In 2017-18, the program expanded from a high school program to a modified program for middle schoolers and some 5th graders. Both programs are designed to connect the interests of students with career paths and build their confidence that success is possible for them.

An intensive, yet fun program, it provides interaction with people and programs that help them visualize themselves as college students. More than four in five (83%) Concept College participants report that the program increased their interest in attending college. The long-term community outcome is certificate or degree program attainment and greater workforce participation in living-wage careers.

Pinellas Education Foundation

Operational Expenses,  $6,809

The Pinellas Education Foundation is a coalition of business and community leaders who collaborate to improve the quality of public education. Together, advocating for public education achievement, creating programs to improve student and teacher performance and raising funds for scholarships, grants and teacher recognition. The Pinellas Education Foundation collaborates with the school district to create greater opportunities for the next generation. From scholarships to career education, our initiatives directly impact more than 100,000 lives annually, and countless more are touched by our efforts.

In 1986, Founder and Chairman Emeritus, Dr. Gus A. Stavros, started a local, economic education impact program for Pinellas County Schools called Enterprise Village. In the years since, the Pinellas Education Foundation has grown and championed many innovative programs in support of this initiative, including Youth Connect, Take Stock in Children Scholarship Program, Future Plans, Enterprise Village and Finance Park. Efforts have raised more than $140 million to support the students and teachers of Pinellas County Schools, and the Foundation is consistently ranked among some of the top public school education foundations in the United States.

Redlands Christian Migrant Association

Graduate Support Coordinator,  $22,000

Only 70% of the students who graduated from Redlands Christian Migrant Association, Inc.(RCMA) in 2013 graduated high school in 2017. The high school environment is a contrast to the small, nurturing school community that characterizes RCMA schools. A strong majority of our students are from farm-working families. Homes are often overcrowded, poorly lit and ventilated and absent of educational materials including books and access to technology. The Graduate Support Coordinator, based at the Wimauma Leadership Academy, will know students’ family and academic histories and will facilitate adjustment into the new school environment. This assistance will be as important for the families as for the students. The goal is for 95 percent of participating students to complete high school. To sustain the position, RCMA expects to do fundraising and diverting funds from other sources and expects the success of the position to attract future funders.

Seniors in Service of Tampa Bay

Retired and Senior Volunteer Program,  $25,504

The program will continue to address the decline in volunteerism in Sun City Center and the South Shore community, which follow a national trend among all volunteers and volunteers ages 55 and older. Through the generous support of the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, Seniors in Service and Encore Tampa Bay have made gains in 2018. From January through July, we invested in learning about the Sun City Center community, the leadership of the community, understanding their challenges as the community sees them, giving our time, energy, support, and encouragement whenever possible and ultimately being accepted and embraced by the community. This strong foundation will serve us well towards our goals for 2019 in creating a sustaining campaign for change in how volunteers are recruited, engaged, and appreciated.

Sun City Center Chapter 226 of The Military Order of the World Wars

MOWW Tallahassee Youth Leadership Conference,  $7,000

The Military Order of the World Wars serves America’s youth by hosting Youth Leadership Conference programs throughout the United States at no cost to the high school students attending. MOWW also sponsors awards programs for ROTC and Junior ROTC cadets, the Boy Scouts of America and the Girl Scouts of the USA.

This chapter sponsors 45 students to attend the three-day conference. The request would fund about 18 of those students.

The Cypress Initiative

S.P.A.R.K. Mentoring Program,  $37,500

The Cypress Initiative developed The Spark Mentoring Program in 2010 to promote well-being in the lives of the community’s most vulnerable, at-risk students attending Hillsborough County Public Schools. Through SPARK, students begin to take personal responsibility in their education, relationships, and face life/situation with a greater sense of purpose and confidence.

The request is to fund 5 South Shore area middle/ high schools during the second half of the 2018-2019 school year and the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year: 25 students per class and up to 3 classes per school. However, we could use partial funding for fewer classes. It costs $2,500 per class.

University of South Florida Foundation

Bedside Optical Monitoring of Stroke,  $22,988

Strokes and Traumatic Brain Injuries are the leading cause of long-term disability in the U.S. In the ICU, neurologists can reverse injuries caused by reduced blood flow to the brain with drugs and/or surgical procedures. However, they lack the technology to continuously monitor a patient’s cerebral blood flow and must wait until a patient’s condition deteriorates before modifying the treatment plan. As a result, the brain health of up to one in four patients worsens in the first two days at the hospital, often leading to secondary injuries, disabilities, and even death.

This research project has the potential to dramatically improve the care received by patients with acute strokes, through quantitative bedside monitoring of their cerebral tissue health.