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Akron Community Foundation announces record assets, awards $1.93 million in grants

Beacon Journal staff report

The board of directors at the Akron Community Foundation reported last month that assets had grown to a record $181.6 million at the conclusion of 2013.

The total represented an increase of $12.6 million over the same quarter a year ago.

The foundation reported that a record 15 new charitable funds were started by individuals, companies and nonprofits throughout the region in the final quarter of 2013.

At the same meeting, the board approved $1.93 million in grants, with the majority — 323 grants totaling $1,430,923 — coming from 91 designated, donor-advised, agency endowment and scholarship funds. Another 22 grants totaling $502,000 came from discretionary, or board-directed, funds, with a focus on early childhood care and education programs.

Discretionary grants for early childhood programs went to:

• Asian Services in Action, for its Ready Program, $12,500.

• Building for Tomorrow, for home visitation, outreach events and physical and behavioral health services for families living in AMHA housing with children under age 5, $95,000.

• Child Guidance & Family Solutions, for the Toddlers and Preschoolers Succeeding program, $65,000.

• Greenleaf Family Center, for the SPARK school-readiness program, $15,000.

• Project GRAD Akron, for the two-week Bridge to Kindergarten school readiness summer camp, $25,000.

• Summit County Family & Children First Council, to enhance the First Things First community developmental screening project, $20,000.

Other discretionary grants went to:

• Akron Inner City Soccer Club, to support year-round soccer programs for inner-city youth, $5,000.

• Akron International Friendship, for the Know Your Community – Know Your World diversity project, $5,000.

• Akron Public Schools, to contract with the College Now program to improve college readiness, $25,000.

• Arc of Summit & Portage Counties, for the People Together program, $10,000.

• Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron, to encourage students in grades 7-12 to explore STEM higher education, $20,000.

• Boys & Girls Clubs of the Western Reserve, to support after-school and summer programming, $70,000.

• Diversity Center of Northeast Ohio, for Dancing Wheels, a physically integrated dance company, to perform The Story of You: Understanding Disability in Akron schools, $2,500.

• First Book, to purchase age-appropriate books for children from birth to age 18 living in poverty, $7,000.

• Girl Scouts of North East Ohio, for its Challenge Course at Camp Ledgewood, $15,000.

• Hattie Larlham Community Services, for vocational training for adults with developmental disabilities, $20,000.

• Junior Achievement of North Central Ohio, for the More than Money program, $10,000.

• Project Learn of Summit County, to recruit and train volunteers for its programs, $20,000.

• Summit Education Initiative, to enhance the countywide Cradle to Career effort, $35,000.

• Tri-County Jobs for Ohio’s Graduates, to provide school- and community-based dropout prevention and recovery programs, $10,000.

• University of Akron Foundation, for the 2014 BEST Medicine Engineering Fair, $5,000.

• Veggie U, to teach third-graders in Akron Public Schools about healthy lifestyles by providing them with gardening kits, $10,000.

In 1955, a $1 million bequest from the estate of Edwin Shaw established the Akron Community Foundation. For more information, call 330-376-8522 or go to


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