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Carbon Community Foundation presents awards

The Carbon County Community Foundation presented nearly $85,000 in grants and scholarships to nonprofit organizations, community groups, educators, and students in the region at an awards ceremony last week.

This year’s awards bring the Foundation’s cumulative grantmaking to more than $1 million invested into the Carbon County community since 2016.

Commenting on the milestone during her opening comments, Sharon Alexander, president of the Community Foundation said, “In 2015, a small group of community members noticed that all of the counties around Carbon County had a community foundation, and we didn’t. Our founders recognized the value of a community foundation and worked to establish ours, contributing their own money to get started because they believed so strongly in the work. Since then, we have grown by leaps and bounds.

“ In addition to the $1 million that we have given away, we administer nearly 50 charitable funds under our umbrella with total assets of nearly $2 million that has been endowed to serve as a permanent pool of money to serve the charitable causes right here in Carbon County.”

Nearly 75 people gathered at the Lehighton Orioles Community Center for the program which has become an annual celebration for the Community Foundation. Of the awards given out, $26,000 came from the Fund for Carbon County, the Foundation’s most flexible grant making fund.

These grants included support for vital equipment for the Lehighton Ambulance Association, furniture improvements for the Penn Kidder Library, a humane trap for the Palmerton Cat Project, the expansion of the Nesquehoning Community Garden and more.

Additional grants were awarded from the Penny Allison Early Childhood Fund, which provides micro-grants to educators and organizations offering early childhood education services; the Scouting Support Fund, which provides campership and program support for area Boy and Girl Scout troops; the Educational Improvement Tax Credit Fund; and several donor-advised funds established by private individuals.

The foundation also awarded a record $35,000 in from 12 different scholarship funds to students graduating from Carbon County school districts this year. Scholarships ranged from awards of $500 to $8,000.

Community members who are interested in contributing to an existing fund or who want to establish their

own fund are encouraged to contact the Carbon County Community Foundation.

“It starts with a conversation,” said Alexander, “and can lead to the next million dollars for our community.”

For more information about each fund and grantee, please visit www.cccfoundpa.org

Scholarships presented:

• Anastasia Susko Memorial Scholarship: Ada Finsel, Jim Thorpe

• Coach Carroll Memorial Scholarship: Ben Goldberg, Jim Thorpe; Kiara Ginopolas, Jim Thorpe; Drew Kokinda, Panther Valley; and Kaidence Krapf, Panther Valley

• D & P Hawk Scholarship: Synceray Behler-Hoffman, Lehighton, and Jacob Hall, Lehighton

• Eugene “Peck” Armbruster Memorial Scholarship: Roberto Magobet, Jim Thorpe

• Friends of CCTI Scholarship: William Trach and Kylee Whiteman, CCTI

• Glenn Eisenhower Memorial Scholarship: Haley Kuehner, CCTI

• Hunter’s Heroes Memorial Scholarship: Melina Schwartz, Jim Thorpe

• Keys to Your Future Award: Megan Matsko, Palmerton

• Leadership Carbon “Spirit of Volunteerism” Scholarship: Gracie Heintzelman, CCTI

• Orioles Scouting Scholarship: Cora Wentz, Palmerton

• Susan J Tisiker Memorial Scholarship: Alex Saas and Cora Wentz, Palmerton

• Tyler Strong Memorial Scholarship: Olivia Rosenberger, Jim Thorpe

Joe Bennett of Carbon County Community Foundation. left, presents a grant to Andrew Keuscher of Lehigh Valley Children's Centers to support programming at the Coaldale and Jim Thorpe child care centers. Bill Allison of the Community Foundation is at right. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS BY WILLIAM SCHWARTZ
A grant is presented to Lehighton Ambulance to purchase equipment. From left are Joe Bennett, CCCF; Keith Heckman, Lehighton Ambulance; Bill Allison, CCCF; Jarad Yeastedt, Lehighton Ambulance, and Joe Mastriani, CCCF.
Sharon Alexander, community foundation president, presents a check to Melina Schwartz of Jim Thorpe High School for the Hunter's Heroes Memorial Scholarship Award.
Bill Allison, community foundation, presents a check to Olivia Rosenberger (Girl Scout Troop 30137), to support her Girl Scout Gold Award project to build a rainbow bridge to honor pets. Joe Mastriani, of the foundation is at right.
The foundation presented a check to support SHINE programming over the summer. From left, are Rick Forgay and Bill Allison, community foundation; Rachel Strucko, SHINE, and Joe Mastriani, community foundation