May 16, 2011

19 local nonprofits receive grants from JH Neighborhood Fund

Nineteen local nonprofit organizations are receiving financial support from the 2011 Johns Hopkins Neighborhood Fund in the form of grants totaling nearly $222,000. Fifty-five agencies applied for funding in February, with requests totaling nearly $850,000 for projects that address the needs of communities around Johns Hopkins campuses in the areas of public safety, health, employment, education and community revitalization.

The Neighborhood Fund was created to support nonprofits that serve the communities in close proximity to Johns Hopkins campuses, and that are associated with Johns Hopkins through institutional involvement or affiliation with faculty, staff, students or retirees. Donations are made through the Johns Hopkins United Way campaign.

“We are really proud of the work we do through the Neighborhood Fund,” said Charlene Hayes, university vice president for human resources, who has been involved with the program since its inception. “It gives our employees the opportunity to invest in the community in which we work, and it underscores our partnership with the people of Baltimore.”

Grant applications were reviewed by a committee that comprises a cross section of employees and is chaired by Frank Bossle, executive director of JHI Internal Audits.

“It is extremely rewarding to see the generosity of my fellow employees in supporting very needy groups in our neighborhoods,” Bossle said. “The Allocation Committee was very impressed with the quality of the applicants.”

Since its inception in 2007, the Neighborhood Fund has awarded 58 grants totaling more than $500,000. The recipients and their funded programs for the 2011 year are as follows:

• Alternative Directions, whose Hand in Hand program works to reduce recidivism among juvenile offenders by offering mental health counseling, individual mentoring and academic services within the Baltimore City Detention Center. Job training, employment connections and continued education opportunities are available after release.

• Baltimore Community Foundation, to support Mount Washington Elementary School’s addition of a middle school.

• Baltimore Reads, for its Neighborhood-Based Portable Classroom Program, which offers adult literacy classes.

• Baltimore Urban Debate League, which will expand elementary and middle school debate programs at 58 of the city’s most underresourced public schools.

• Caroline Center, which provides employment readiness through specific skills training, such as Certified Geriatric Nursing Assistant, and additional life skills classes and workshops ranging from math and financial literacy to job searching.

• Catholic Charities, whose My Sister’s Place Women’s Center will fund a cook to serve meals to vulnerable women and children.

• Charles Village Community Benefits District, which will fund a rat abatement project for Charles Village.

• Dayspring Programs, which will fund a mental health consultant who will help parents manage behavior and access mental health services needed by children to develop positive self-concept and self-control, and to be ready to enter school and to learn.

• Habitat for Humanity of the Chesapeake, toward renovation of six vacant properties near The Johns Hopkins Hospital.

• Higher Achievement, which provides four years of mentoring to middle school students in Baltimore City public schools.

• Incentive Mentoring, for university-based volunteers to mentor underperforming students at Dunbar High School in East Baltimore and the Academy of College and Career Exploration in Hampden.

• Living Classrooms Foundation, whose Safe Streets public health campaign is designed to reduce shootings and homicides in several East Baltimore communities.

• Oakenshawe Improvement Association, to help transform a vacant lot on a troubled block into a garden and green space for community use.

• Southeast Community Development Corp., to create a broader customer base that can sustain the Highlandtown Farmers’ Market operation.

• St. Ambrose Housing Aid Center, whose Pathway Out of Poverty financial literacy program provides workshops and one-on-one counseling.

• St. Francis Xavier Head Start, to purchase computers with early-learning software to support classroom learning.

• Village Learning Place, whose Books2Go program provides early literacy exposure to more than 800 students in Baltimore City public schools.

• Writers in Baltimore Schools, toward literacy development for low-income middle school students in the Charles Village, Barclay, Waverly and York Road communities.

• Young Audiences of Maryland, which will hire program and residency coordinators for its Access for All program that provides arts programs at 15 percent of the true cost.

Additional information about the Johns Hopkins Neighborhood Fund can be found online at
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