Women’s Leadership Fund Grants $24,695 to 4 Orange County Nonprofits

POUGHKEEPSIE & MONTGOMERY – Four Orange County nonprofit organizations have received a total of $24,695 in grants from the Women’s Leadership Fund, an initiative of United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region.

The grants were awarded for projects designed to promote women’s financial stability and independence and/or opportunities for women and girls. They mark the WLF’s fourth year of funding nonprofits with a one-year grant cycle that is subject to review and funding availability.

In the past four years, the WLF has awarded nearly $79,000 in grants.

Literacy Orange received $3,955 for an enhancement its Sustainable Women and Financial Literacy program.

Gianna Franco (left) congratulates Literacy Orange Executive Director Christine Rolando on receiving the grant

The focus will be to give students who have graduated from the class in 2009 and 2011 a refresher course. The goal is to provide women with the tools to manage their finances, take control over current income, be wise stewards and learn strategies to plan for a better future. Participants in 2009 and 2011 classes have succeeded in eliminating thousands of dollars of debt and three of them have even avoided foreclosure on their homes.

The Women’s Enrichment Program of the Greater Hudson Valley Family Health Center was granted $6,182.

Gianna Franco (left) congratulates the Health Center’s Grants Assistants Chris Lennon and Rachel Asher

The money will be used to expand the existing program from Newburgh to the Middletown community. The program provides weekly informational sessions that encourage at-risk women to pursue and adopt a safe, healthy, productive and independent lifestyle. It is implemented in partnership with the Orange County District Attorney’s office as well as several other organizations.

The YMCA of Dutchess and Eastern Orange’s Establishing Stability Though Learning program was awarded $5,000. The existing program helps women learn English, connect with their children through reading, be financially responsible, and understand how to keep active and eat healthier.

The grant will be used to target 25-30 Newburgh area mothers (and their children) who have not yet assimilated to the United States. The YMCA will collaborate with Orange-Ulster BOCES to get an English as a second language teacher and Walden Savings Bank to provide financial literacy lessons. Participants will also have the opportunity to work with a fitness instructor and nutrition educator to help promote a healthy lifestyle.

The Flexible Delivery – Persons in Need of Supervision (PINS) Program administered by the Girl Scouts Heart of the Hudson was granted $9,558 to help provide 33 girls from the greater Port Jervis with access to Girl Scout programs during the 2012/2013 year.

The Women’s Leadership Fund (WLF) is a vitally important initiative that promotes the independence, growth, and self-determination of women and girls. The WLF supports projects that generate positive opportunities and help women and girls obtain financial self-reliance.

United Way will host "Power of the Purse" event at the Powelton Club in October as part of their yearly fundraising initiatives : Get Tickets.

United Way Women's Fund aims to make a difference in the lives of the women and girls in the community.

Cover Photo*  Gianna Franco (far left) and Kenya Gipson (far right) of the Women’s Leadership Fund with award recipients (l to r) Literacy Orange Executive Director Christine Rolando, Girl Scouts Heart of the Hudson Fund Development Director Molly Gibeau-Griffin, and Greater Hudson Valley Family Health Center Grants Assistants Rachel Asher and Chris Lennon. Not picture is a representative from YMCA of Dutchess and Eastern Orange.