Grant Impact Stories

Community Foundation awarded 392 grants in the period January 1-December 31, 2016 totaling $2,686,823 in support of the arts & culture, environment, education, health & human services, and other means of community growth. From grantee reports and site visits and community conversations with donors and grantees we learn about what has worked, what has fallen short, and how we can dedicate our grant making to constantly improving impact.

Learn more about grant successes and ways we have partnered with donors to help solve specific problems in our community.

10 Years of Supporting Women's Programs

10 Years of Supporting Women's Programs

Community Foundation’s Women’s Fund Annual Luncheon provides a platform to hear inspirational stories – sharing the impact of powerful grantmaking throughout our community. One such grant to Greater Ithaca Activities Center (GIAC) provides funding for a new initiative designed to help empower a group of teen girls and young women, ages 16-25 considered at-risk. Your support builds their self-esteem and marketable work skills through mentorship, social skills training, personal hygiene training, job skill training and coaching. Funds are used for one-on-one counseling, group socialization through planned interactions and self-introspection exercises. The young women embrace the powerful transformative aspects of the program offered in a safe, supportive environment to grow and improve their lives. The outcomes are inspirational: One participant is enrolled in college, two returned to high school – and graduated! Two are back in high school to finish their education. Those not in school are working. One participant found meaningful work at GIAC, ”Being a summer camp counselor for a four year old group was the highlight of my summer!”

Click here to read more about lives influenced here in Tompkins County.

Click here to learn more about the impact of the 2017 Women’s Fund Grant Cycle.

Click here to learn more about the Women’s Fund.

To learn more visit Impact Dashboards and Impact Stories

Transforming - a lifelong love of learning Minecraft Author Library Tour

Transforming - a lifelong love of learning

Communities across our county and beyond, from rural villages to larger towns benefit from the library grant cycle.  The Bernard and Shirley Rosen Library Fund grants are transforming, promoting a genuine intellectual curiosity and a lifelong love of reading and learning, supporting access by youth to 33 Finger Lakes Libraries. More than $130,000 is granted annually; totaling over $750,000 in 155 grants since 2011. 

One particular grant of $14,588 supported a special tour to encourage  youth reading, bringing critically-acclaimed author Sean Fay Wolfe to 15 libraries in the region. 

This grant resulted from the inspiration of Sara Knobel, Library Director at the Groton Public Library. Sara invited other libraries to participate and coordinated their efforts to join in a collaborative application to leverage grant funds to bring a big name author to libraries that could otherwise not afford such a visit. Click here to see a special video: The Amazing Finger Lakes Library System Author Tour!  

Teen author, Sean Fay Wolfe, was met by an enthusiastic group of fans who were inspired by his story and excited about the free books they received at the event. After one of the sessions, Andy, an 8 year old, went home to start writing his book!

Click here to learn more about the 2017 Library Grant Cycle

Catholic Charities' A Place To Stay

Catholic Charities' A Place To Stay

The Women’s Fund Grant Cycle magnifies the impact and scope of funding, meeting critical needs of  our population’s most vulnerable.  A Place to Stay is one of the programs funded by the 2016 grant cycle.

This grant supports a new strength-based program that combines short-term residential stays for women with increased access to local resources and services. Participants secure employment, transportation and stable housing. Women residents receive encouragement and self-sufficiency in a safe space.

Lisa, 51, has battled drug and alcohol addiction for the past 33 years. She recently found a safe haven at a newly opened Catholic Charities of Tompkins/Tioga-sponsored facility for women in Ithaca. Known as “A Place to Stay,” the residence provides transitional housing for women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. While living there, they work with staff members on skills that move them toward independence and a more permanent housing solution. (photo by Kevin Rivoli)


quote John Keats

A thing of beauty is a joy forever: its loveliness increases; it will never pass into nothingness.