The Santa Barbara Foundation has announced that its LEAF Initiative (Landscapes, Ecosystems, Agriculture, and Food Systems) will launch the Santa Barbara County Conservation Blueprint, a comprehensive compilation of the county's natural resources and land uses, in the spring of 2017. The project, which will be accessible through an interactive atlas, is designed to help the community make informed decisions about its shared future and keep Santa Barbara County a beautiful, desirable, and healthy place to live and work. The project is being led by the Land Trust for Santa Barbara County and the Cachuma Resource Conservation District, in partnership with a twelve-member Steering Committee representing agriculture, conservation, and resource management. In support of the community-driven planning process, the LEAF Initiative has distributed grants totaling $300,000 to provide support for innovative on-the-ground projects and approaches aimed at preserving the natural beauty, ecological integrity, and productivity of the wild and working lands in Santa Barbara County.
Helen Keller International has announced a three-year grant of $283,000 from the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven in support of its ChildSight program, which provides comprehensive, high-quality vision care services to children in low-income families. The grant will enable the program to expand its services in the New Haven community and enhance its educational outreach to parents and students. Over the next year, in addition to providing free on-site refraction assessments to approximately six thousand children and delivering free prescription eyeglasses to about twelve hundred, ChildSight will explore opportunities to make the program more sustainable through third-party reimbursement.
The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving has announced that its Black Giving Circle Fund has awarded an inaugural grant of $10,000 to the Catholic Charities Parker Memorial Family Center's Fatherhood Initiative. The grant will support the initiative's efforts in the new year to integrate its co-parenting and healthy relationships groups with the Dinner and a Story program. In addition, the center will provide coaching, training, and mentoring to fathers interested in becoming Dinner and a Story facilitators.
The Trust for Public Land has announced that it received a $50,000 grant from the Venice-based Gulf Coast Community Foundation to help extend the Legacy Trail into downtown Sarasota. The funds will be used to support appraisals, boundary surveys, environmental assessments, and other project expenses needed to advance the proposed acquisition of approximately eight miles of rail corridor needed for the extension project. With connections to the Venetian Waterway Park and the Carlton–Myakkahatchee Trail, the completed Legacy Trail project will connect Sarasota with Venice and North Port in southern Sarasota County.
The Central Indiana Community Foundation has announced grants totaling nearly $1 million to forty-seven nonprofits through the Indianapolis Foundation and the Central Indiana Senior Fund. The former awarded grants totaling $348,000 to thirteen organizations serving Marion County in the areas of quality of life, education, vitality of the community, connectivity of neighborhoods, and building community assets, while the Senior Fund awarded $650,032 in grants to thirty-four organizations whose work is aligned with the fund's research-based priority areas.
The Boston Foundation has announced quarterly discretionary grants totaling more than $1 million. Recipients include the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative, the Greater Four Corners Action Coalition, the Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance, and Jose Mateo Ballet Theater.
The Hilton Head-based Community Foundation of the Low Country has announced awards totaling $40,000 from its Disaster Recovery and Rebuilding Fund, boosting the total awarded from the fund to $100,000. The most recent recipients are the Children's Center, Lowcountry Legal Volunteers, and Volunteers in Medicine.
The Vermont Community Foundation in Middlebury has announced that its Innovations and Collaborations grant program awarded $169,500 to eleven organizations. Recipients include Housing Vermont, the Public Assets Institute, the Vermont Family Network, and the Main Street Alliance of Vermont.
The Greater Milwaukee Foundation has appointed Judge Pedro A. Colón to its board of directors. Colón is its fifteenth acting board member, completing an expansion from a twelve-member board that began in 2014.