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Centre Foundation's Giving Circle awards grants

by on September 07, 2017 10:21 AM

STATE COLLEGE — Centre Foundation's Giving Circle members awarded $15,000 in grants to three area nonprofit organizations, according to a press release.

Giving Circle members voted at their annual reception last week to give a $10,000 grant to Hearts for Homeless, which will use the funds for its day shelter.

“With this grant from the Giving Circle members, Hearts for Homeless will be able to reopen our daytime shelter for another year,” said Ginny Poorman, founder and executive director. “The shelter provides protection from the harsh winter, as well as meals, essential items, support for finding a job and connecting with other resources that one may require.”

The Giving Circle was established in 2006 to commemorate Centre Foundation's 25th anniversary. Since then, members have pooled resources to provide $124,000 in grants to Centre County organizations. Giving Circle membership is based on an annual membership donation from $125 to $500, according to age.

A successful membership drive allowed $2,500 grants to be awarded to two runner-up organizations, Bellefonte Art Museum and Discovery Space.

After grant proposals were received in June, Giving Circle members ranked and narrowed the list to their top three organizations. The final three made presentations at the reception attended by more than 100 people at Above the Valley in Centre Hall.
Bellefonte Art Museum will use its grant toward its 10th anniversary celebration next summer. “Co-Creating: An Imagination Celebration,” will feature free events at the museum and in the community.

Discovery Space will use its grant for a new pollinator exhibit, as the interactive children's museum prepares to open in a new, expanded location on North Atherton Street.

Wendy Vinhage, executive director of Interfaith Human Services, last year's $10,000 grant winner, explained how the funding helped her organization.

“This grant allowed us to expand our financial care program, helping more low-income families budget their finances through one-on-one money management counseling,” Vinhage said. “By helping more people with money management, we are putting them on their way to self-sufficiency.” 

Previous recipients of Giving Circle funds include Park Forest Preschool, House of Care, Housing Transitions, Strawberry Fields and the Community Help Centre.

For more information about the Giving Circle program, visit


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