Watertown Community, Education Foundations Announce Joint Grant Awards

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The Watertown Community Foundation (WCF) and the Watertown Education Foundation (WEF) are pleased to announce their first joint grant awards for education. A record number of 42 applicants submitted proposals for this grant cycle, designed to benefit educational programs in Watertown’s public schools.

“We received 42 interesting and wide-ranging grant applications, making the review committee’s job very difficult. We are pleased to be able to fund 23 outstanding projects, for a total of $35,012,” said Thea Sahr, Grant Committee Chair for the Watertown Community Foundation. “It was a pleasure to be able to share our grant making with the Watertown Education Foundation, and we look forward to continuing to work closely with them in the future.”

Elaina Griffith, Co-President of the Watertown Education Foundation, said the collaboration will make it easier for educators to get funds for their projects and programs.

“The idea behind this partnership came about after the realization our educators were having to go to a number of different non-profits to fulfill their grant needs.    Streamlining the grant request process theoretically making it a one-stop shop made sense,” Griffth said. “The $25,000 in grant monies given by the Ed Foundation are a direct result of our Dancing With the Stars fundraising event last year. Our annual give is directly related to the success of our fundraisers, and we hope to continue to increase our available funds year over year.”

Grants were given to projects and initiatives in each of the Watertown Schools, covering a range of topics such as enhancing STEM teaching, supporting college readiness programs in the High School, educating students about substance abuse, buying instruments for music education, and much more! Read about the full range of grants awarded on our website.

Grant Recipients:

1. Sixth Grade Literacy Program, Watertown Middle School, Books so students develop a love of reading ($500)

2. Arts in Prevention, Improbable Players and Watertown Middle School, Educate students about alcohol and other substance abuse, as well as healthy choices, through original performances and theater workshops. ($1600).

3. College Visits, Watertown High School/Watertown High School Guidance Dept. Bus trips to local colleges/universities to help students with college decisions ($1,600)

4. SPEAK Project, Youth and Family Support Network (Collaboration of Watertown Youth Coalition, Watertown Public Schools, World in Watertown, and Wayside Youth & Family Support Network). Bring educational speakers and activities to Watertown High School to educate students, faculty and staff about healthy decision-making, substance abuse, and coping skills and will promote awareness and respect for the diversity of Watertown youth both in the school and the greater community. ($4,000)

5. Listening Centers first Grade, Hosmer Elementary PTOs. Purchase Listening Center equipment for each first Grade classroom at Hosmer, ($1,000)

6. Student Book Award, Hosmer Elementary School. Purchase books to use in a student choice book award program in which fourth and fifth grade students read and evaluate nominated books during the school year, and then vote for their favorite in the spring, thus determining the annual award winner. Students read all nominated books. ($2,125)

7. Project Based Learning (PBL), Watertown Public Schools. Watertown teachers and administrators to participate in 3-day on-site PBL workshop presented by Buck Institute for Education. ($5,000)

8. Watertown Week, Watertown Middle School. Week-long program focused on learning about Watertown for students who can’t attend the Washington, DC trip. ($1,000)

9. Musical instrument purchase and repair for Cunniff School, Friends of Watertown Music. ($1,300)

10. Author in Residence, Cunniff PTO. 2 nd and 3 rd grade students work with children’s author and illustrator Emilie Boon. ($1,500)

11. Field Trip to Edward M Kennedy Library, Watertown High School, ($500)

12. School Newspaper Project, Watertown Middle School – printing costs of one edition of school newspaper ($800)

13. WHS Wayshak Fab Lab, Watertown High School PTSO. After school program 2 days/week at Fab Lab, ($1500)

14. Building school gardens into curriculum, Watertown Public Schools. Ties gardens to STEM frameworks and gives teachers the resources to develop new units aligned to the standards. ($3,200)

15. Watertown Middle School Mural Project, Watertown Middle School. Materials for students to paint murals for WMS ($1,125)

16. Community Explorers, Watertown Middle School, field trips and materials ($1,000)

17. Decodable book library, Hosmer Elementary School, to be used by Special Education and Reading specialists to teach phonics with first and second grade students ($895)

18. Marine Biology Project, WHS PTSO, 3 salt water tanks for use in biology classes ($1,009)

19. Target Literacy, JR Lowell Elementary PTO, books for low-level readers ($800)

20. LEGO WeDo, Hosmer School. Lego sets to promote engineering and science ($1,958)

21. PCR in Biolabs, Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation and Watertown High School. Equipment to explore biotechnology in conjunction with a grant from Massachusetts Biotechnology Education Foundation ($1,300)

22. Picture in Writing, Hosmer School, instructional DVDs ($600)

23. College Readiness for South Asian Girls, Saheli. After school program to break down barriers for girls to go to college. ($1,300)

The Watertown Community Foundation, a public, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, works to build and sustain a vibrant, close-knit community in Watertown – now, and for future generations. To accomplish this, WCF raises funds from individuals, families, businesses, and foundations; awards grants to non-profits and community projects; and builds networks of donors, grantees, program participants, and stakeholders.

Since its inception in 2003, WCF has awarded over $775,000 in grants to programs and organizations serving the residents of Watertown. Persons interested in supporting WCF should contact Cathy Berkley, Executive Director, at 617- 926-1500 or at info@watertownfoundation.org.

WCF Board of Directors

sDavid Siegel and Darshna Varia, Co-Presidents; Thea Sahr, Vice President; William B. Ford, Treasurer; Robert Airasian; Emily Barclay; Andrew Bundy; Eleanor Donato; Robert Kelly; Eliza Petrow; Lora Sabin; Robert Shay; Michael Ward; Kathryn White

For additional information, visit WCF’s website: http://www.watertownfoundation.org

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