Making an Impact
About Our Grantmaking
The Foundation is a nonprofit group staffed strictly by volunteers. Our focus is strictly local -- within the greater Takoma area. We spend your money in ways that get you, our donors, the most bang for your buck. Aside from big special projects like the community center, we specialize in micro-grants aimed at groups that can start something big and can be self-funding once we give them a seed grant. We especially like to support programs that help the children in our community, and especially those children who do not have enough resources at home.
Teen Mosaic Masterpiece
A grant from the Foundation for art apprenticeships with Arts for the People demonstrated what talented teens can do with the right guidance and a little bit of money. The students polished their job hunting skills when they applied for the program. They polished their mosaic-working skills too. The result is a gorgeous (go see it!) mosaic mural in the pedestrian underpass on Georgia Avenue and Route 410. “I loved working on this project,” said Natalie Ramirez, one of the apprentices. “Not only did I learn how to make mosaics but I learned important career building lessons as well as art theory. The art we made will last through generations.”
Feeding Hungry Neighbors
Edie Hopkins, a graduate of Rolling Terrace Elementary School and now a middle school student, created a program to help students living in poor households have access to food over the weekend. The Foundation provided the Rolling Terrace PTA with a $1,000 grant to purchase backpacks and reduced-price food through Manna Food Center. Each month the PTA fills 10 back-packs with tuna fish, macaroni and cheese, canned fruit, cereal, and more for kids and their families. In a separate $500 grant to Manna, The Foundation also helped feed hungry seniors at the Franklin Apartments. Manna distributed 134,750 pounds of food to 161 different families. “Working together, the Takoma Foundation and Manna Food Center fought hunger and fed hope by providing essential food to vulnerable senior citizens who otherwise would have gone hungry,” said Manna’s Amy Gabala.
Supporting After-School Programs
Kids from Camp Fire USA, an after-school program at Takoma Park Middle that the Foundation helps fund, visit the White House, meet President Bush and pose with the Thanksgiving turkey.
Scholarships and Science Fairs
The Foundation believes that no Takoma kid should miss out on an activity because he or she can’t afford to join. We fund equipment and membership scholarships for a variety of groups, including Lumina Studio Theater, the Montgomery Blair Band and Orchestra, and local school field trips. Last year we provided Piney Branch Elementary students with Science Fair Backpacks, loaded with all the supplies and directions they’d need to create a good experiment.
Dance, Dance, Dance
Parents at the Silver Spring International Middle School offered to put in sweat equity to build their kids a dance floor. We provided $1,000 for the materials, and the school came through with a contractor. Now the school has dance programs during the school day, as well as after school dance clubs, and rental space for local dance troupes. We also funded a special dance program for at-risk teens at the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange. We helped the Jazz Fest and the Folk Festival, and we paid for dance mats and a dance studio at the community center.