The Beckley Area Foundation is excited to highlight new funds established since April 1, 2018. You can read more about the donors and the causes they support by going to our home page and checking out the "New Fund" section.
Thirteen funds were established by our donors:
Animal Rescue Fund
Margaret Ann and Jerry L. Bays Scholarship Fund
Wayne and Diana Bennett Family Fund
George A. Bragg Scholarship Fund
Leslie Equipment Company Fund
The William Mahaffey Memorial Fund
Robert Manning Memorial Scholarship Fund
Stephen Mullens Scholarship Fund
Raleigh County Historical Society Fund
Charles R. and Shirley M. Weaver Community Service Scholarship Fund
David Alan Wills Scholarship Fund
Woodrow Wilson High School Class of 1956 Fund
Woodrow Wilson High School Class of 1968 Memorial Scholarship Fund
Our ability to give back to numerous organizations is ONLY made possible by our supportive donors, who believe in, "Local Giving. Lasting Legacies." Remember anyone can donate to these new funds through our website, or by mailing a check to BAF (129 Main St, Ste 301, Beckley, WV 25801).
Beckley Area Foundation (BAF) awards a grant to Just for Kids, a nationally accredited child advocacy center, to upgrade their current phone system. It is crucial for this organization to have a system that meets the needs of law enforcement, child protective services and all the other partners they work with as well as the families they serve.
Replacement of the current phone system will improve their ability to communicate with individuals and organizations that they work with in a timely manner. As a small non-profit, it is a challenge for them to use needed program funds for basic infrastructure needs. BAF funding will help Just For Kids continue to provide the quality services for the children they serve and improve their capability to maintain strong communications in the community.
Just For Kids serves every child and family in Raleigh, Fayette and Wyoming Counties. One in ten children under the age of 18 have been sexually abused. Children from all walks of life, ethnic backgrounds and socio-economic groups are affected. Their mission is to help reduce the trauma that children experience who have been abused.
As a nationally accredited child advocacy center their three main goals are to: 1.) Work as a team with law enforcement, child protective services and the prosecutor’s office to provide a child friendly environment to conduct forensic interviews of children who have been subject to criminal child abuse (sexual, serious physical abuse and neglect); 2.) Offer counseling to those children who disclose abuse; and, 3.) Provide prevention and awareness training in the communities served. Just For Kids conducted 118 interviews in the Beckley office last year. Sixty percent of the children interviewed disclosed abuse in their interview. Counseling is offered to every child who discloses abuse. Their counselor saw 71 of those children last year and provided between 1 and 8 sessions of Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. National research shows that close to 90% of the children who complete this therapy learn the skills to live healthier productive lives.
Just For Kids is also an authorized organization to provide the nationally developed Stewards of Children training which is a two hour video based training for adults regarding prevention and awareness of child sexual abuse. In addition, other prevention and awareness activities are provided throughout the year in conjunction with the Raleigh Co. Family Resource Network and the Women's Resource Center.
Beckley Area Foundation has awarded over $136,000 in funding to Just for Kids since 2002 through
its Community Grant program and other donor designated and donor advised endowments. For more information on how you can support your favorite organization(s), call BAF at 304-253-3806.
To learn more about Just for Kids, visit their website at jfkwv.com.
A $2,000 grant from the Beckley Area Foundation allowed a Junior Achievement's classroom volunteer to inspire students at Cranberry-Prosperity, Maxwell Hill, and St. Francis deSales elementary schools. The 4th grade teachers at these schools submitted a request for Junior Achievement's financial literacy and workforce readiness curriculum for their students. Volunteer, Ronn Robinson of American Electric Power works with the teachers at these schools to deliver the Junior Achievement (JA) curriculum and inspire these students.
Many of the students in these classrooms qualify for free or reduced lunch. Maxwell Hill Elementary has a 52% free and reduced lunch population, Cranberry Prosperity Elementary has a 93% free and reduced lunch population and St. Francis deSales has a free and reduced lunch population of 21%. JA programs inspire students to think beyond the normal school day and dream about their future careers and workplaces. These are children who, in many cases, have forgotten that it is okay to dream about the future because they are so focused on just getting through the day. JA has reignited their passion for breaking through the walls that may be limiting their views of the future.
During the six Junior Achievement classes, Ronn was successful in making students aware of opportunities they didn’t realize existed. He was also able to illustrate the value of education and how it correlates to their success later in life with an emphasis on the importance of staying in school and graduating from high school.
The teachers at these schools welcome Ronn back to their classrooms each year because he has a gift of inspiration and they realize the value of his participation as a classroom volunteer and the value of the Junior Achievement message. Most of all, Junior Achievement and Ronn, instill “hope” for the future in each child, something that cannot be underestimated.
One Maxwell Hill Elementary teacher commented, “Mr. Robinson has completed the Junior Achievement Program in my fourth grade classroom now for the last 4 years. It is a wonderful learning opportunity for my students to learn about Economics and do hands on activities related with the concepts. Mr. Robinson does a wonderful job facilitating and teaching the students. My students always look forward to when he comes. They study the previous week’s content on their own so they can do well in the game he always plays upon returning. The concepts he teaches through the Junior Achievement program align with the West Virginia Fourth Grade College and Career Readiness Standards. I feel JA is important for several reasons, the content is required to be taught and JA makes it fun for the kids to learn. It is great to see my students so excited to learn about real life issues. I also feel it is important to have people from the community be involved with our students. I hope Mr. Robinson and the Junior Achievement Program continues for many years.”
A heartfelt thank you from the BAF Board of Directors and staff to Ronn Robinson and Junior Achievement for opening the students' eyes to opportunities that are possible.
Thanksgiving plans are being formed. Black Friday sales advertisements are increasing. #GivingTuesday pop-ups are prominently displayed. Amidst all of these happenings Do Not Forget to submit your Beckley Area Foundation Community Grant Application before the 11:45 p.m. November 30th deadline.
Non-profits with a 501-c-3 designation, schools, and municipalities serving Raleigh County are eligible to apply for grant assistance in areas of arts, education, civic beautification, public recreation, health and humans services. Projects or programs must occur between April 1, 2019 and March 31, 2020. Maximum request is $7,000.
For additional instructions and the electronic application click here or visit our website at www.bafwv.org. Don't Delay! Deadline is less than two weeks away!
A new deadline for our annual community grant application is being implemented this year. Non-profits with a 501-c-3 designation, schools and municipalities serving Raleigh County need to mark their calendars for the 11:45 p.m. Friday, November 30th deadline.
If you are planning a project or program for implementation between April 1, 2019 and March 31, 2020, you definitely do not want to miss this opportunity! Requests for up to $7,000 are accepted for assistance in the areas of arts, education, civic beautification, public recreation, economic development, health and human services.
If you haven't started your application, don't delay! Only 30 days remain to develop your plan, gather data and complete the application. Access the digital application by clicking here or through a link on our website and Facebook page.
Is this your first time submitting a request? Don't feel intimidated. BAF staff welcomes the opportunity to discuss possible projects for funding and the 'how to' of submitting your request. Please feel free to contact us at 304-253-3806 Monday through Friday between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Continue to check out our blog for additional nuggets related to the grant process.
The Beckley Area Foundation is a member of the Leave A Legacy of Central Appalachia organization. This program is a collaborative effort among local non-profit organizations, foundations and estate planning professionals to encourage people from all walks of life to make charitable gifts, large or small, through their estate plans.
One "Leave a Legacy" initiative is the promotion of "Wills Week" during October aimed to create awareness about the need to have a will and the importance of giving to charity.
You can leave money to your family and to your favorite charity through a will. Some people think they must choose between these two options; however, you can do both.
Make sure you have an up-to-date will or living trust that adequately reflects your charitable objectives. Without these documents, you surrender control of your property and assets to the courts. Contact a financial planner, lawyer or accountant and ask for help in establishing a charitable gift. Consider gifts of real estate, personal property or stocks as well as cash. Other options include making one or more of your favorite charities the beneficiary of your life insurance, pension plan or IRA.
Imagine how much could be done if each one of us remembered a favorite charity in our will or estate plan. The impact would be immeasurable.
BAF has received 58 testamentary gifts totaling over $8 million benefiting diverse local charitable organizations including animal shelters, YMCA of Southern WV, Children's Home Society, Mac's Toy Fund, Helping Hands Resource Center, Hospice of Southern WV, Salvation Army, Women's Resource Center, Fuller Center, American Red Cross, Civil Air Patrol, Beckley Concert Association, area libraries, several churches and BAF discretionary funds used to respond to the Annual Community Grant program.
In each instance, these gifts will make a difference in the lives that follow. Donations made through the Beckley Area Foundation are placed in permanent endowments that generate income year after year for the charitable purpose defined by the donor. The permanent endowment can be named for the donor or donor family thus serving as a lasting memorial.
Testamentary gifts may also be directed to one or more specific charitable organizations, and the assets used for current needs.
Contact Beckley Area Foundation at 304-253-3806 or email email@example.com for more information about leaving your legacy.
It was with great sadness that we learned of Dr. Daniel's passing. Dr. C. Richard Daniel was one of ten community minded citizens which came together nearly 35 years ago to initiate something new, untried, and untested for our area. It was a community foundation and was premised on the simple concept of caring people providing good things for the future of our area. These visionaries believed that individuals, families and businesses can provide good things in perpetuity. In other words, a tree so graciously planted by some will provide shade for future generations. One hundred years from now, year after year, BAF will continue to enhance the quality of life in our communities because 10 individuals had a vision that came to fruition and grew the support of our area citizens.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Daniel Family.
Founding BAF Board of Directors
Charles K. Connor, Jr. Dr. C. Richard Daniel, Sr.
Leslie C. Gates Alex D. George, Sr.
Elmo J. Hurst Charles S. Lewis, Jr.
Warren A. Thornhill III Phoebe Bledsoe Tieche Herring
Leo Vecellio, Jr. James W. Word, Jr.
West Virginia frequently falls on lists we don’t like. While working on this scholarship piece, I discovered WV does not appear on the list of states with the highest average student loan debt per student ($36,367) from the Class of 2016. A good thing! Nor, did WV appear as one of the states with the lowest average student loan debt per student (($19,975) from the same class. I wish we’d been on this one!
According to Make Lemonade, “as of 2018 there are more than 44 million borrowers who collectively owe $1.5 trillion in student loan debt in the U.S. alone. Student loan debt is now the second highest consumer debt category - behind only mortgage debt - and higher than both credit cards and auto loans.” The average Class of 2016 graduate has $37,172 in student loan debt.
So, why the topic of student loan debt and scholarships appearing in the same publication? It’s simple. Every dollar of scholarship assistance helps reduce the need for loans. Someone recently compared it to giving students a gift card for their education.
BAF has distributed for the 2018-2019 academic semesters scholarship awards totaling $373,492.55 benefiting 238 students at 38 separate colleges and institutions. And we are awaiting recommendations from a number of schools for additional awards before the year’s end.
And students are grateful for those gift cards. Here is just a portion of one of the many thank you notes received at BAF:
“…I cannot thank you enough for creating this scholarship to help those who struggle financially with
college and am forever grateful that out of all your applications, mine was chosen. My father returned to college when I was about eight years old to receive a degree, but whilst obtaining this degree he also accumulated a large amount of debt. However, this never wavered my parent’s beliefs of how important education is. It was at this time
I determined I would do everything in my power to pay my own college bill and I am extremely happy to announce that with this scholarship I have officially paid for my college! I will attend WVU this fall to pursue a B.S. degree in Civil Engineering; however, I am keeping my mind open to pursuing a M.S. when the time comes. Thank you a million times.”
BAF does not create the scholarships. Without generous donors BAF would not have the 180 endowments which are working to reduce loan debt for students from Raleigh and its surrounding counties. Kuddos and a huge thank you to all those donors who have sown seeds of encouragement and financial support for students pursuing their dreams!
Since January 1st of this year, Beckley Area Foundation has granted $1.3 million to non-profit organizations, municipalities and educational institutions working tirelessly to improve the quality of life in the communities we serve. BAF is able to meet our communities' charitable needs because of its donors. By supporting and partnering with these organizations, BAF is building stronger and healthier communities.
Below is a listing of 114 organizations BAF has supported since the beginning of 2018:
American Red Cross - Raleigh Co. office
Beaver Lions Club
Beckley Art Center
Beckley Babe Ruth League
Beckley Concert Association
Beckley Dream Center
Beckley Health Right
Beckley Little League
Beckley Police Department
Beckley Presbyterian Church
Beckley-Raleigh County Convention Center
Beckley-Raleigh Co. Health Department
Beckley-Stratton Middle School
Beckley Veterans Administration
Beyond Wishes Therapeutic Riding Program
Big Brother Big Sisters of South Central WV
Black Diamond Girl Scouts
Bluestone Baptist Church
Bradley-Prosperity Fire Department
Bread of Life Outreach Center
Buckskin Council Boy Scouts of America
The Carpenter's Corner
Catholic Charities of WV
Childhood Language Center
Children's Home Society of WV
City of Beckley/Beckley Events
City of Beckley/Parks and Recreation
City of Mullens
Coda Mountain Music Academy
Cowen Public Library
Crime Stoppers of WV
Family Crisis Center
Fayette Co. Public Library
First Baptist Church
First Christian Church
First Tee of West Virginia
First United Methodist Church
Fishes and Loaves Food Ministry
Fuller Center for Housing of Beckley
Grandview Christian Church Backpack Program
Greenbrier Valley Theatre
Hacker Valley Elementary School
Helping Hands Resource Center
Hinton Area Foundation
Hospice of Southern WV
Humane Society of Raleigh County
Just For Kids Child Advocacy Center
Lillian James Learning Center
Mabscott Elementary School
Marsh Fork Alumni Association Roadside Park project
Mount Hope Heritage and Hope
Mountain Heart Community Services
Mountain State Center for Independent Living
New River Gorge Regional Development Authority
New River Gorge Trail Alliance
New River Humane Society
Ohio-WV Youth Leadership Assoc.
Pine Haven Homeless Shelter
Piney Creek Watershed Association
Prince Railroad Station Authority
Princeton Public Library
Quota Club of Beckley - Empty Bowls
Raleigh County Animal Rescue
Raleigh County Board of Education
Raleigh County Commission on Aging
Raleigh County Community Action
Raleigh County Historical Society
Raleigh County Public Library
Raleigh County Special Olympics
Ronald McDonald House Charities
Royal Family Kids' Camp
St. Francis deSales Catholic School
St. Matthews AME Church
St. Stephen's Episcopal Church Good Samaritan Fund
St. Stephen's Episcopal Day School
School of Harmony
Shady Spring Branch Library
Shady Spring High School
Shady Spring Middle School
Sophia Public Library
Southern WV Fellowship Home
Southern WV Preparedness Partnership
Stepping Stones Academy
Summers Co. 4-H Camp
Summers Co. Animal Control and Welfare Project
Tamarack Artisan Foundation
Temple Beth El
Theatre of West Virginia
Three Rivers Avian Center
Town of Sophia
Trap Hill Little League
Treehouse Arts Ensemble
United Methodist Temple F.O.L.K. (Feed Our Local Kids) Ministry
United Way of Southern West Virginia
Webster Co. Family Resource Network
Webster Co. High School
Webster Co. Memorial Hospital
West Virginia Dance Company
West Virginia Public Broadcasting
Woman's Club of Beckley
Women's Resource Center
Woodrow Wilson High School
YMCA of Southern WV
Youth Museum of So. WV
Additionally, BAF has provided numerous scholarships to 38 institutions of higher learning.
Through BAF, donors are endowing the future—helping people make an impact through lasting and meaningful contributions to meet the needs of our community today. Your gift does make a difference.
Wayne and Diana Bennett are retired educators from Raleigh County. Together they have spent over 70 years working with children and volunteering to support their community. Though they are retired, they have continued to give back to Raleigh County and now have established the Wayne and Diana Bennett Family Fund as an unrestricted endowment, utilizing BAF’s “Building over Time” option, to support the community grant program for Raleigh County.
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