Good News Friday: Good Deeds - February 28, 2014

By Chelsey Lucas February 27, 2014

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The 2014 Gulf Coast Canstruction design competition begins today, Feb. 28, at Westfield Southgate Mall, 3501 S. Tamiami Trail, in benefit of All Faiths Food Bank. Teams of local architects, engineers, interior designers and students will create themed, original sculptures made entirely of canned goods provided by Publix, which will be on display through March 10 before the goods are donated. A Canstruction Soiree will be held from 6 – 8 p.m. tomorrow, March 1, where the winners will be announced. Tickets to the Soiree are $55 per person, with all proceeds going to All Faiths Food Bank. The event is a project of the Florida Gulf Coast Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. Additional information and tickets are available here or by contacting event chair Lisa Hess at [email protected] or (941) 315-8242.



Gulf Coast Community Foundation’s board of directors approved more than $1.7 million in grants last week at its February meeting. The funding included $205,000 in leveraged grants awarded to four nonprofit organizations through Gulf Coast’s competitive grants program and $1.3 million in grants from donor funds at the foundation. The leveraged grants are in amounts over $10,000 to address regional priorities identified by the foundation and that leverage at least 50 percent of funding for the project from other sources. Jewish Family and Children’s Service of the Suncoast was awarded $85,000 from the Community Health Endowment Fund, while UnidosNow, Florida Studio Theatre and Asolo Repertory Theatre were awarded grants totaling $120,000 from the Venice Endowment Fund. The Gulf Coast board also earmarked $100,000 in new funding for efforts to improve services for homeless children and their families in Sarasota County.



As part of The Legacy of Valor, a campaign of The Patterson Foundation, Realize Bradenton will team up with the Suncoast Food Alliance to provide “Veterans Appreciation Days,” tomorrow, March 1, and Saturday, March 22, at the downtown Bradenton Farmers’ Market on Old Main St. Organizations that provide services to veterans and their families will be set up on 4th St. West from 9 a.m. – 2  p.m., including Manasota Operation Troop Support, The Patterson Foundation’s Legacy of Valor Campaign, Manatee County Habitat for Humanity, Goodwill Manasota Industries, CareerSource Suncoast, USF Sarasota-Manatee, Turning Points, State College of Florida, Del Couch Music Education Foundation, SCORE, and Meals on Wheels PLUS of Manatee.



The Health in Motion Mobile Medical Unit of the Department of Health in Sarasota County will provide free and low-cost health services at 10 sites around the county during March. The staff will offer health screenings and education as well as assist individuals who lack medical insurance and do not have a health care provider to find a medical home for ongoing health care. No appointments are needed and a registered nurse will be available at all sites. Some locations are 5849 Sawyer Loop from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. on Saturday, March 1; Salvation Army, 1400 10th St. from 9:30 a.m.  – 3 p.m. on Thursday, March 6; and CareerSource Suncoast, 3660 N. Washington Blvd. from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Tuesday, March 11. All dates and locations can be found here.



The Pines of Sarasota Foundation has successfully met a $65,000 match offered by an anonymous donor of the Community Foundation of Sarasota County and strengthened its capacity—fundraising and digital—in the process, as part of its recent $65,000 Challenge. This initiative was conceived in honor of the organization’s 65 years of service to the community. The $65,000 Challenge was launched during the Pines’ “Wit & Wisdom Luncheon” on October 30 and concluded 65 days later, on January 2. Other elements of the campaign beyond fundraising included reaching goals of 650 “likes” on Facebook, 65 followers on Twitter, and the creation of 65 stories of Pines residents, families, rehab patients, staff, volunteers and donors to be shared on the Pines website, e-newsletter and Facebook. All goals were reached; most were exceeded handily. For more on the $65,000 Challenge, click here.



Local accounting firm, Christopher, Smith, Leonard, Bristow, Stanell, P.A., has been named the 2014 recipient of Manatee Community Foundation’s “Community Spirit Award,” recognizing the firm’s outstanding philanthropic commitment to the community. The Spirit of Manatee Awards serve as a tribute to local individuals and companies that have made a significant positive impact in Manatee County through direct financial support and philanthropic leadership.

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