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Youth in Philanthropy awards $14,700 to local charitable organizations



FREDERICKSBURG, VA (Dec. 20, 2013) The Community Foundation of the Rappahannock River Region yesterday awarded $14,700 in grants to area charitable organizations through its Youth in Philanthropy Project (YIP).

YIP is a ten year-old program that The Community Foundation created to encourage student volunteerism and philanthropy. It engages area young people in decision-making about the distribution of grant dollars. The group consists of 40 area high school students who review proposals from local nonprofit organizations that address youth-based issues. The YIP members then make recommendations for funding to the foundation's Board of Governors. Over the years, these young leaders have awarded more than $100,000 in grants. YIP is based on a national model and is the first program of its type in the region.

In the current grant cycle, five organizations were awarded YIP funding. They include:

disAbility Resource Center of the Rappahannock, Inc., "Live the Dream, Youth Leadership," $5,000.

This initiative will teach independent living skills to youth with disabilities, ages 14-21, who are preparing to transition from school to adult life. Students will participate in five six-week sessions to help them achieve a better understanding of employment, education, independent living skills, advocacy, and their rights and responsibilities. University of Mary Washington (UMW) students have been recruited through the UMW's service learning project to develop material for the youth leadership sessions. All sessions will be interactive and provide students with the opportunity to grow and be better prepared to address the issues that will face them once they transition into adult life.

Safe Harbor Child Advocacy Center, "Specialized Trauma-Focused Mental Health Treatment," $3,000.

This grant will support mental health treatment for abused children. The specialized treatment will teach the children new skills to help them process, manage and resolve their distressing thoughts, feelings and behaviors related to their abuse.

King George Summer Lunch Bunch, "Summer Lunch Program," $2,744.

This grant will provide funding to help feed children and young adults in King George County over the summer months. King George Summer Lunch Bunch is a volunteer organization dedicated to fill the nutritional gap for King George students during the 11 week summer vacation and help parents stretch their food dollars. Over 5,000 lunches were served last summer to kids, age 2 to18. Food is prepared in a central kitchen and transported by volunteers to predetermined stops in neighborhoods.

Rappahannock Legal Services, Inc., "Legal Eagles," $2,000.

The Legal Eagles project will sponsor up to four high school and/or undergraduate students who want to volunteer at a legal aid office and are interested in learning about legal careers, but might not be able to afford to undertake an unpaid internship. Under the guidance of a trained undergraduate intern from the University of Mary Washington and a staff of licensed attorneys and legal professionals, the interns will be responsible for many important tasks at Rappahannock Legal Services (RSL), including: client interviews, documentation and organization, research, drafting pleadings and contacting potential witnesses. The interns will also serve as ambassadors by writing content for the RLS website to describe their experiences and encourage others to apply for future internships with RLS.

Stafford Junction, "Olde Forge 'A Better Block' Beautification Project," $1,975.

Stafford Junction is a faith-based nonprofit organization that serves high needs children and their families residing in Stafford County. One of the neighborhoods they serve is Olde Ford Junction. The grant will enable the organization to improve the appearance of Old Forge Park through the work of youth volunteers. Volunteers will help repaint, weed and clean the basketball court, add basketball goals, repair picnic tables, reseed grass and lay brick along the basketball court. The volunteers will also remove graffiti, clean up debris around the community park and mulch the playground area.

The YIP members are mentored by foundation board member John McManus, community volunteers Josh Cooper and Taylor Sutton, and Community Foundation Executive Director Teri McNally.

For more information on The Community Foundation's grants and scholarships, as well as how the foundation can assist donors in creating charitable funds, call 540.373.9292 or visit


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Pouches' Community Corner

Trains, Planes and Automobiles Kids' Race Series


From a small beginning, Cathy Weise of the Ron Rosner YMCA has developed an ambitious three-race series for kids for this summer, with the help of The Great Train Race, Shannon Airport, Dominion Raceway & Entertainment, the Fredericksburg Area Service League and Race Timing Unlimited.

Great Train Race Director Jennifer Taylor was one of the first on board.