New grants to area nonprofits total $84,000
WATERBURY, CT -- The Greater Waterbury YMCA’s “Art by the Green” is among the projects newly funded by Connecticut Community Foundation in its latest grand round. In total, the Foundation awarded $84,000 to ten local nonprofit organizations whose projects promote innovative and immersive arts and culture experiences in Greater Waterbury and the Litchfield Hills.
Julie Loughran, president and CEO of Connecticut Community Foundation, said, “The arts are invaluable to communities, not only as sources of enjoyment and entertainment but as economic drivers. Through the generosity of our donors, we are thrilled to support these creative projects.”
The YMCA will receive $10,000 from the Foundation to engage an estimated 250+ community volunteers of all ages in creating mosaic murals along the YMCA’s facade facing the newly-restored downtown Waterbury Green.
Working with Connecticut artists Joanne and Bruce Hunter, these murals will create an immersive visual arts experience for a large and diverse population along the West Main Street corridor in Waterbury.
The Hunters are award-winning visual artists, teachers, advocates and creators of public art whose backgrounds include innovative art programming and community collaborations. Widely known throughout the state for public mosaics, their work in Waterbury includes the 2003 ‘Star' at Rotella School and the 2012 ‘Cool Waters' mosaic on South Main Street.
“We are very grateful to Connecticut Community Foundation for supporting our efforts to create artwork that resonates with the community in a highly visible public place facing the downtown Green,” said Jim O’Rourke, CEO of the Greater Waterbury YMCA. “This project brings together volunteers to plan, design and fabricate mosaic panels to be enjoyed and appreciated by countless individuals passing along West Main Street.”
The Foundation’s nine other new grantees:
ASAP! (After School Arts Program) in Washington, Connecticut, earned a $6,300 grant to engage students at Children’s Community School in Waterbury in experiential learning with professional artists, through a combination of art, nature, writing and science studies.
The American Mural Project, based in Winsted, received a $7,300 grant to bring together all 600+ students at Rotella Inter-district Magnet School in Waterbury. With the support of professional teaching artists, they will create a large-scale mural honoring family and community members whom the students admire for their work because of accomplishments, work ethic and impact on others.
The Greater Waterbury Chamber of Commerce Foundation was granted $3,500 to support the Arts and Culture Collaborative of Greater Waterbury in serving the area’s arts community.
The Mattatuck Historical Society and Museum in Waterbury received a $50,000 grant (over five years) towards its capital campaign. Plans include: expanded, above-grade educational studio space for children and adults; increased exhibition space for the Mattatuck’s permanent collection; a larger elevator; a more welcoming exterior; enhanced wayfinding within the Museum; completely accessible public spaces; and a stable financial legacy.
The Mattatuck Historical Society and Museum also earned a grant of $3,390 to provide free, fine arts learning opportunities for pre-school administrators, teachers, students and families at the museum.
Mental Health Connecticut, based in West Hartford, was granted $15,000 for weekly art classes at Independence Center in Waterbury, which are based upon the principle that people diagnosed with mental health conditions need a positive, trusted environment to become engaged.
Pilobolus, based in Washington, Connecticut, received $5,000 for its new Five Senses Festival, which will run from July-August 2018. It will offer interactive arts programs and performances that inspire creativity, personal expression and community bonds.
Shakesperience Productions in Waterbury earned $8,000 in continued grant support for young people to develop interactive performances on the history of Waterbury neighborhoods and to perform them in neighborhood parks or centralized locations for their families and neighbors.
Waterbury Symphony received $15,000 in continued grant funding for its Bravo! program, which provides music education for underserved students and their families using music as a tool for personal development, community engagement and social change.
To learn more about the Foundation’s grantmaking to nonprofit organizations in the region, visit www.conncf.org/supporting-nonprofits/.
Established in 1923, Connecticut Community Foundation fosters creative partnerships that build rewarding lives and thriving communities in 21 towns in Greater Waterbury and the Litchfield Hills. The Foundation provides leadership in addressing the region’s critical issues, strengthens local nonprofit organizations through grants and technical assistance programs, and works with individuals, families and corporations to establish and steward scholarships and charitable funds.
Director of Communications
Connecticut Community Foundation