The Community Foundation of the Ozarks has gained additional support from community funders to nearly double the money available to support children and families with virtual learning on the days they aren’t attending in-person classes at Springfield Public Schools. Total funding for the SPS In-Person Learning Support Program now exceeds $229,000.
After SPS announced its options of partial in-school classes or fully virtual learning for the beginning of fall semester, the CFO committed $100,000 from the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund to the SPS In-Person Learning Support Program. Grants from the program support agencies that provide childcare and virtual learning assistance for vulnerable students on the days when they are not in the classroom. The focus includes low-income families, special-needs students and essential workers, including educators.
For the first round of grants announced Aug. 7, the Rice Family Foundation donated $20,000 to help increase funding for the initial recipients. Since then, the CFO has coordinated with other funders to fully fund agency requests and extend grants to additional agencies.
- An anonymous funder is providing $71,000 to support programs at: Ozarks Regional YMCA; Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield; and Springfield Dream Center.
- The Stanley and Elaine Ball Foundation, managed by Central Trust Company, is providing $22,640 for a program at Drew Lewis Foundation. The Ball Foundation has been a partner with the CFO on the five-year Northwest Project to tackle poverty through programming based at The Fairbanks with the Drew Lewis Foundation.
- Trinity Presbyterian Church is providing $15,000 to support programs at: Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield; Children, Family and Youth Development Center; and Discovery Gardens Montessori School.
Parents interested in more information on any of these programs should contact the agencies directly.
“We are grateful to the Ball Foundation, Trinity Presbyterian and the anonymous funder for stepping up to meet this community need,” said Brian Fogle, president and CEO of the CFO. “We are blessed to have such generous donors and dedicated agencies that, in their own ways, are helping our community through this challenging time. Collaboration has long been a strength of our community and even more important during an unprecedented time like this.”
The CFO’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund was established in March with an initial $1 million commitment by the CFO and its 50 regional affiliate foundations, Missouri Foundation for Health and the Coover Charitable Foundation. Generous donors have since contributed more than $735,000 to support this grantmaking. Additional support from more funders will extend grantmaking from the fund. Gifts can be made online.
Since launching the fund, the CFO has granted more than $1.7 million through various discretionary programs. Total COVID-related grantmaking by the CFO, including grants from donor-advised and employee benevolence funds, is now more than $2.7 million.