Grant Report

Van Wezel Foundation Receives $1 Million Gift

Plus, the Community Foundation of Sarasota County awards $225,000 in Giving Challenge prizes and Barancik Foundation distributes $475,000 in retention bonuses to early education professionals.

By Staff June 6, 2022

The Van Wezel Foundation recently received a $1 million gift from local philanthropist and longtime foundation supporter Phil Steyaert. The gift kicks off the private philanthropy campaign for the new Sarasota Performing Arts Center.

As part of its ongoing partnership with the Early Learning Coalition of Sarasota County, the Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation recently distributed $475,000 in retention bonuses to 535 early education professionals in Sarasota County, which are intended to keep experienced teachers in the classroom. Checks up to $1,500 were hand-delivered to teachers and directors who were eligible for bonuses based on their longevity in the field and a commitment to high-quality education.

The Community Foundation of Sarasota County, alongside other foundation partners, awarded more than 260 prizes totaling $225,000 to nonprofit organizations to recognize their efforts and achievements during the 2022 Giving Challenge. Award recipients demonstrated excellence in transforming planning, strategy, and creativity into successful campaigns through several superlative prize opportunities. The 2022 Giving Challenge raised $16,017,021 million for 669 participating nonprofit organizations in Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, and DeSoto counties, including $6,149,105 million in matching funds from The Patterson Foundation.

The William G. and Marie Selby Foundation Q3 SAM Grants Cycle will open on July 1 and will close at 3:59 p.m. on August 1. The quarterly "Small and Mighty" grants were created to meet the emerging needs of nonprofits with operating expenses under $300,000. Grant recipients will be notified by Sept. 30, 2022.

The California-based Anspar Foundation has granted $25,000 in unrestricted funds to the Library Foundation for Sarasota County to support emerging needs of local public libraries. Anspar president Michael Lewis, a Sarasota native and a 1990 graduate of Pine View School, was inspired to give back to his former community.

With the support of a Wells Fargo grant, the Education Foundation of Sarasota County launched Financial Awareness Week at four area high schools and conducted two Dollars and Sense workshops at Sarasota Military Academy in April. 

The Child Protection Center, Inc. has received a $5,000 grant supporting mental health services for children experiencing trauma from child abuse from the Venice Golf and Country Club Foundation.

Neal Communities recently donated $5,000 to various community organizations throughout Manatee and Sarasota counties, including Lakewood Ranch High School’s baseball program, the Venice Vikings football and cheer program, the Venice Moose Lodge’s annual Robert C. Anderson Golf Tournament to benefit the Special Olympics, Braden River High School’s Black Pearls Dance Team and TEDxBradenton.

ALSO Youth, which serves Sarasota and Manatee Counties LGBTQ+ youth community, is pleased to announce it has awarded seven scholarships totaling $4,000 to local youth. The ALSO Youth board of directors awarded the Greg Jung Memorial Scholarship to a local student enrolled art University of North Florida. The Greg Jung Scholarship was created to honor the legacy of Jung, a longtime educator and is awarded to a student pursuing a college degree majoring in education.

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