Scranton Area Community Foundation Co-Hosting Child Care Presentation

Women in Philanthropy (the initiative of the Scranton Area Community Foundation focused on serving women, girls, and their families in Northeastern PA) and The Agency for Community Empowerment (ACE) are hosting a presentation on Thursday, March 24, 2022, at 1:00 p.m. regarding a recent regional study on the obstacles women and families face today regarding attaining quality affordable childcare, conducted in collaboration with Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC). This event will be held in-person and virtually and will share the study’s findings while inviting a discussion on opportunities for community-based solutions that minimize the barriers to quality affordable childcare.

In-person attendance is limited but there is no cap on the number of attendees participating virtually.

What: Child Care Needs and Barriers to Access Report/Presentation
Date: Thursday, March 24, 2022
Time: 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Location: University of Scranton, Brennan Hall, PNC Bank Board Room (320 Madison Ave., Scranton, PA 18510)

Attendees can register to attend here: https://scranton.fcsuite.com/erp/donate/list/event?event_date_id=2221

Women in Philanthropy and the Scranton Area Community Foundation are interested in addressing the challenges families face in obtaining quality affordable childcare across the Lackawanna County region.

Scranton Area Community Foundation Invites Area Students to Apply for Scholarships

The Scranton Area Community Foundation invites area students to apply online for eligible scholarship opportunities through their online scholarship portal. Over $800,000 in scholarship funding is available through the Scranton Area Community Foundation to eligible students seeking to continue their education. Over 60 scholarships are available to high school and college students for a variety of studies and interests. Scholarship applications will be accepted until Friday, April 1, 2022. Detailed information about all of our scholarship opportunities can be found at safdn.org/scholarship. Scholarship decisions are announced in June.

For more information about scholarship opportunities at the Scranton Area Community Foundation, please contact Cathy Fitzpatrick, Scranton Area Community Foundation Grants and Scholarship Manager, at 570-347-6203, extension 301, or grants@safdn.org.

Elan Gardens Receives $3,000 from Scranton Area Community Foundation for PPE

Bobbie O’Donnell is pictured above at Nay Aug Park, receiving a check for $3,000 from the Scranton Area Community Foundation. In photo (left to right:) Jerome Musheno, R.Ph, Esq., Board Memer, Scranton Area Community Foundation Board of Governors; David Price, Secretary, Scranton Area Community Foundation Board of Governors; Kenneth Okrepkie, Chair, Scranton Area Community Foundation Board of Governors; Laura Ducceschi, President/CEO, Scranton Area Community Foundation

The Scranton Area Community Foundation has awarded $3000 to Elan Gardens, a non-profit senior living organization located in Clarks Summit. The 2021 Critical Needs Emergency Grant funds were used to purchase the necessary personal protective equipment for staff to combat COVID-19. The mission of Elan Gardens is to offer a supportive residential environment dedicated to maintaining each individual’s strengths, abilities, and autonomy while providing the resources to further enhance the quality of their lives. The well-being of residents is a top priority. Staff has worked tirelessly to protect residents from the virus, which can develop into severe illness in elderly individuals. Thankfully, Elan has remained successful in their efforts. To date, all residents remain untouched by COVID-19.

The Scranton Area Community Foundation Announces Careers in Care Nursing Scholarship Applications Open

The Northeastern Pennsylvania Health Care Foundation, administered by the Scranton Area Community Foundation has announced the 2022 Careers in Care Nursing Scholarship application deadline for students in Lackawanna, Luzerne, and Wyoming Counties who plan to pursue or who are pursuing nursing, and who will practice in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

Interested nursing students or current nurses looking to advance their careers may apply online from February 1, 2022 through April 15th 2022 at CareersinCareNEPA.org.

To qualify for a Careers in Care Nursing Scholarship, individuals must show they have had a permanent address in Lackawanna, Luzerne, or Wyoming County for the last three years. Applicants may be new or continuing students interested in pursuing, or currently pursuing, nursing; traditional or non-traditional students pursuing qualification at any level of the nursing profession, including CNA, LPN, RN to BSN, BS (3rd and 4th year only), Master’s Degree/Nurse Educator; or non-traditional students looking to return to work or seeking a change in employment.

“Nursing provides the greatest honor in life – to be able to care for patients in their most vulnerable state and assist them when they need it the most. This scholarship is enabling me to enhance my skills from being a Licensed Practical Nurse to earning my Bachelors in Science degree in Nursing,” remarked Nicole Lubash, 2021 scholarship winner, mother of two young boys, and a Junior at Marywood University.

The Northeastern Pennsylvania Health Care Foundation’s Careers in Care initiative is a$1.7 million commitment over a three-year period (2020-2023) focused on developing the regional pipeline of the healthcare workforce. Established through the Scranton Area Community Foundation, the nursing scholarship program aims to support the growth and development of the nurses at all levels in NEPA.

“We’re delighted that 19 previous scholarship winners are already pursuing nursing careers with awards from the Careers in Care nursing scholarship program. We are prepared to assist many additional nursing school applicants with scholarships during this enrollment period,” stated Laura Ducceschi, President and CEO of the Scranton Area Community Foundation.

Lackawanna College Awarded Grant to Support Diversity Initiatives

A $2,500 grant from the Scranton Area Community Foundation’s Center for Community Leadership and Nonprofit Excellence will help Lackawanna College build a multi-stage diversity and inclusion improvement plan. 

The grant will provide funds for the College to hire a consultant service to assist in creating and administering a comprehensive institutional equity audit. The audit will focus on the student experience, examining organizational practices and policies related to diversity and inclusion.

“There’s a need to identify the College’s strengths and weaknesses, so we can create a more vibrant college community, improving the experience for all students, particularly those who have been traditionally marginalized and underrepresented,” said Joya Whittington, project director. “I’m grateful that we were approved for this grant so we can begin to implement institutional and social change.”

Faculty and staff members on the College’s Diversity, Equity, Justice and Inclusion (DEJI) committee will lead the project. Branching off from the audit, the committee will establish a multi-phase Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) improvement action plan and initiate short and long-term educational activities.

The Robert and Rose Cavanaugh Fund to Feed the Hungry Poor Grants $14,680 in 2021 to Fight Hunger

In 2021, The Robert and Rose Cavanaugh Fund to Feed the Hungry Poor granted $14,680 to programs in Lackawanna, Luzerne, and Wayne Counties. The Fund, which was established in November 2018 at the Scranton Area Community Foundation through a planned gift from the late Robert and Rose Cavanaugh, supports entities and programs such as pantries, meal services, and food kitchens that are dedicated to serving the hungry poor.

The 2021 grant recipients and the purposes for the grants are:

● Catherine McAuley Center – “Food Pantry For Women and Families in Need”

● CEO Weinberg Regional Food Bank – “Food Delivery and/or Food Supplies”

● Here For A Reason – “Food Packaging and Distribution”

● Holy Trinity Lutheran Church Food Pantry – “Food for Food Pantry”

● Meals on Wheels of Greater Pittston – “Food Preparation and Delivery”

● Meals on Wheels of NEPA, Inc. – “Food preparation and delivery”

● NativityMiguel School of Scranton – “Hunger Relief for Families of NativityMiguel School”

● NEPA Youth Shelter – “NEPA Youth Shelter Grocery Fund”

● The Greenhouse Project – “Plants, Food, and Skills for Sustenance”

● ThinkBIG Pediatric Cancer Fund – “ThinkBIG Holiday Gift Card Program”

● United Neighborhood Centers of NEPA – “Angel’s Attic Food Pantry”

● Wayne County Community Foundation – “Wayne County Emergency Food Relief Fund”

Recipients were selected through a rigorous application process. Applicants were invited to submit grant requests for up to $5,000 using the Scranton Area Community Foundation’s online grant portal.

Ryanne Jennings from the Wayne County Community Foundation explained how the grant supported their efforts to provide fresh food to their local emergency pantries, “Wayne County Emergency Food Relief Fund purchased $3747 in local produce, eggs and dairy for the in Wayne County. Our pantries have very limited storage for items that require refrigeration, so the Emergency Food Relief Fund helps to provide the funds needed to purchase directly from the farmers directly before the pantries distribute their food to our community members in need of support.”

For more information about grant opportunities at the Scranton Area Community Foundation, please contact Cathy Fitzpatrick, Scranton Area Community Foundation Grants and Scholarship Manager, at 570-347-6203, extension 301, or grants@safdn.org.

2021 SAF Annual Event Celebrates Over $5 Million in Grant Distribution

The Scranton Area Community Foundation held its 2021 Annual Community Celebration on the evening of Thursday, December 2nd at the Hilton Scranton and Conference Center.

The Annual Community Celebration event was an opportunity for the Foundation, its Board of Governors, and supporters to share and celebrate their impacts and accomplishments in 2021. Laura Ducceschi, CEO & President of the Scranton Area Community Foundation, and Ken Okrepkie, Chairman of the Scranton Area Community Foundation Board of Governors, hosted the event which was live-streamed to supporters. Posture Interactive provided production services, including video production, streaming, and designing the stage dressing.

At the event, members of the Scranton Area Community Foundation Board of Governors celebrated the generosity of donors and friends that enabled the Foundation to distribute over $5 million in grants and scholarships from charitable funds, and an additional $2 million from Foundations under management.

Also recognized were featured community partners and funds who have made a significant impact in 2021. Featured Community Partners were William G. McGowan Charitable Fund, Lamar Advertising, and the Hudacek Family. 2021 Featured Funds were Anne Marie and Paul Kelly Fund, NEPA Invitational Fund, and Patrick J. and Patricia J. Mellody Memorial Fund.

Also honored at the celebration was Cathy Fitzpatrick, Grants & Scholarships Supervisor at the Scranton Area Community Foundation, for her 20 years of dedicated service to the Foundation.

For more information about the Scranton Area Community Foundation, please contact 570-347-6203 or info@safdn.org.

Apply today for a Tomorrow’s Leaders Today Grant

Does your organization provide work in any of the following areas?

  • Environmental and/or Local Parks Projects
  • Facility Improvement for Animal Welfare
  • Homeless Programs

Grants are available through the Tomorrow’s Leaders Today (TLT) grants program.

The Scranton Area Community Foundation is accepting requests for proposals for the Tomorrow’s Leaders Today (TLT) grants program. Applications will be accepted from charitable organizations in Lackawanna County through Friday, January 15, 2022.

What is the Tomorrow’s Leaders Today (TLT) grants program?

Tomorrow’s Leaders Today (TLT) is a youth leadership program of Leadership Lackawanna that provides high school juniors with the opportunity to meet with community leaders and decision-makers. In addition to leadership development, the students are also required to complete a philanthropy curriculum conducted by the Scranton Area Community Foundation. TLT seeks to help participants realize what they can do to make a difference in their community as young philanthropists and to further develop their leadership skills.

The Scranton Area Community Foundation is proud to partner with Leadership Lackawanna in introducing the concept of philanthropy and grantmaking to our region’s youth. The Scranton Area Community Foundation allocates funding for the TLT class to grant. Priority areas are chosen by the TLT students. In 2022, grants will be provided to organizations working to make a difference in the following Priority Areas: Environmental and/or Local Parks Projects Facility Improvement for Animal Welfare Homeless Programs Grant applications for the TLT grants program are available through the Scranton Area Community Foundation’s online grant management portal. The maximum grant amount awarded per grant for a 2022 TLT grant is $2,000.

Applications will be accepted from charitable organizations in Lackawanna County through Friday, January 15, 2022.

To submit an application, you will need to first create an account in our online grant management portal if your organization has not already done so. Please email grants@safdn.org with questions.

NeighborWorks NEPA Receives Grant from the Robert H. Spitz Foundation

NeighborWorks Northeastern Pennsylvania (NeighborWorks) is pleased to announce it has received a $17,000 grant from the Robert H. Spitz Foundation, managed by the Scranton Area Community Foundation.

These funds support our Community Services Navigator position, which aids clients from our main direct service programs: Aging in Place, Neighborhood Revitalization, and Homeownership & Financial Services. This position provides assistance to older adults in connecting to other social service opportunities, completing applications for assistance and navigating referrals provided.
“We truly appreciate the generous support from the Robert H. Spitz Foundation” said Jesse Ergott, President & CEO. “This grant will allow us to provide more personalized assistance to our neighbors facing challenges with financial and homeownership stability.”

The grant from the Robert H. Spitz Foundation is one of several funding sources that is being used to increase organizational capacity to establish and maintain the Navigator position. This position ensures the Aging in Place program can continue to provide services to older adults in our community.

The Robert H. Spitz Foundation awards annual grants through a competitive application and review process. NeighborWorks is one of 45 nonprofit grant recipients in Northeastern Pennsylvania to receive funding in the 2021 cycle of grant awards. Priority areas for funding include supporting programs that aim to break the cycle of poverty, remove economic barriers, and encourage independence in adults and children through access to safe, affordable housing, transportation, education, and other important issues.

Scranton Area Community Foundation Awards Grant to The Garden of Cedar

The Garden of Cedar in Scranton has been awarded a $15,000 grant by the Scranton Area Community Foundation.  The grant proceeds will be used to assist in constructing several innovative features at the Garden including ADA accessible planting beds, a vertical planting wall to maximize crop yield, custom planting greenhouses for off-season gardening, and children’s discovery stations.  The Garden of Cedar is located at 715 Cedar Avenue in South Scranton.

The mission of The Garden of Cedar is to provide a unique functional urban community garden and discovery area that will provide healthy nourishment, education and enjoyment to a diverse culturally rich community comprised of recent immigrants and long-term neighborhood residents.  The Garden’s

signature feature will be a wandering maze pathway bounded by vegetable and fruit planting beds.  Visitors will be able to wander along a serpentine path, with stops & starts, and return safely to the point of origin.  Along the way they will be able to observe various planting techniques employed by residents of the local community.

The project is being developed by Frank Dubas, president of the Garden, a non-profit organization.  Frank resides in New Canaan, CT and Scranton, PA.  Construction is expected to commence at the site in early 2022.           

“I am extremely grateful that the Scranton Area Community Foundation has recognized the mission of the Garden by making this award to assist with several innovative and transformational features.  When complete, The Garden of Cedar will be a testament to the resilience of one of Scranton’s most diverse and deserving neighborhoods. The Garden will be like none other,” said Dubas.