Adirondack Foundation this year awarded $590,000 in Generous Acts grants to meet pressing needs and support important initiatives in local communities across the Adirondack region.
“Generous Acts isn’t just a grant program — it’s a unique approach to philanthropy that invites donors and partners to work together to strengthen communities and help our neighbors,” said Cali Brooks, Adirondack Foundation’s president and CEO.
Grant awards ranged from $1,000 to $20,000. Recipients are broken out and listed according to the following needs and opportunities:
Equitable access to food
Twenty percent of children under 18 years old in the North Country live in households that have experienced food insecurity — a broad term that refers to sustained or temporary lack of access to enough food for an active, healthy life for all household members and limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate foods. While this issue has been compounded by the pandemic, it is also playing a central role in innovative partnerships and initiatives to improve local food systems for greater health and economic benefits. Generous Acts grants are helping respond to urgent food needs as well as support long-term efforts to improve access to local, healthy food for people of all ages and income levels.
Grant recipients: Adirondack Community Outreach Center, Adirondack Health Institute, AdkAction.org, ARISE of Northern New York, Cornell Cooperative Extension – Essex County, Craigardan, Essex County Public Health, Essex Farm Institute, Hub on the Hill, Joint Council for Economic Opportunity in Clint and Franklin Counties, Moriah Central School, Peru Central School District, Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York, Saranac Lake Youth Center, Schroon Lake Backpack Program, The Salvation Army-Empire State Division-Plattsburgh and Ticonderoga Central School District.
“This location is within walking distance from a low-income housing complex, which can help [overcome] transportation issues,” said Nicole Laurin in the grant application from the Joint Council for Economic Opportunity in Clinton and Franklin Counties. Grant funding is helping this group open a new “farmacy” in Rouses Point that will accept payment from food stamps and provide other benefits.
Educational pathways from cradle to career
Studies show that education is not just about acquiring knowledge — it also provides a foundation for better health, wellbeing and economic outcomes. Generous Acts grants are helping to improve educational pathways through literacy programs for adults and families, summer enrichment programs for teens, community college recruitment efforts for non-traditional students, improving resources for preschoolers and more.
Grant recipients: Adirondack Sky Center, Akwesasne Boy & Girls Club, AuSable Valley Central School District, Bing Bang Boom (Saranac Lake Rotary Foundation), Bluseed Studios, CFES Brilliant Pathways, Champlain Children’s Learning Center, Cornell Cooperative Extension – Franklin County, Crown Point Central School, CVES/Clinton-Essex-Warren-Washington BOCES, Depot Theatre, Franklin-Essex-Hamilton BOCES, Lake Placid Central School District, Literacy Volunteers of Clinton, Essex and Franklin Counties, Mountain Lake PBS, North Country Community College Foundation, Northwood School, Plattsburgh Family YMCA, Play ADK, Ready4Real, Saranac Lake Central School District, Small Tales Day Care Center, St. Agnes School, Thomas A. Shipman Memorial Youth Center, Town of Chester Public Library and Tri-County Literacy Center.
“Utilizing evidence-based programs in our virtual Clubhouse or in our in-person after school program will help our youth get through these trying times,” said Jessica Cree-Jock, executive director of the Akwesasne Boys & Girls Club. A Generous Acts grant is supporting the club’s work to provide academic, health and wellness, cultural and character-building programs for youth and teens.
Vibrant economic and civic engagement
Communities benefit when residents feel welcome and connected, have access to healthy activities, common spaces and sustainable trails, and entrepreneurs and small businesses can thrive. Generous Acts grants are supporting community improvements in towns and villages, as well as diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, helping to attract new residents and more.
Grant recipients: Adirondack Diversity Initiative, AuSable River Association, Barkeater Trails Alliance, Champlain Area Trails, Goff-Nelson Memorial Library, John Brown Lives!, Johnsburg Historical Society, Lake Placid NY Rotary Foundation, Little Peaks, North Country Public Radio, Northern Forest Canoe Trail, Northern Forest Center, Point Positive Fund at Adirondack Foundation, The Outdoor Emergency Services Group, Protect the Adirondacks!, Ticonderoga Revitalization Alliance, Town of Jay, Town of Keene, Town of Long Lake, Tupper Arts and the village of Tupper Lake.
“The goal of this project is to improve user experience and encourage use of public transit,” wrote the Lake Placid NY Rotary Foundation in its grant application. This grant award will help them work with partners to install bus shelters in Lake Placid that will provide protection from wind, rain and snow.
Equitable access to housing and other essentials for healthy living
Many adults 65 and older live alone in the North Country region, making many elders susceptible to social isolation and limiting their access to support networks. Forty two percent of workers in the region make less than $30,000 per year, making it difficult to cover basic living expenses like child care, internet, housing and other essentials. Generous Acts grants are helping to respond to urgent needs and overcome social and economic barriers that stifle upward economic mobility.
Grant recipients: Adirondack Community Action Programs, AIDS Council of NENY, Behavioral Health Services North, Cerebral Palsy Association of the North Country, Ecumenical Council of Saranac Lake (Samaritan House), High Peaks Hospice and Palliative Care, Family Services Association of Glens Falls, Family YMCA of the Glens Falls Area, Hudson Headwaters Health Foundation, Keeseville Country Gardens – National Church Residences Foundation, Lakeside House, Lifeway Church, Mercy Care for the Adirondacks, Mountain Lake Services, North Country Life Flight, North Country Ministry, Open Door Mission, Saranac Lake Voluntary Health Association, Silver Bay YMCA and the Tri-Lakes Center for Independent Living.
“Our goal is to encourage positive parent-child interactions that improve social connectedness and family bonding, which nurtures the unique potential of every family,” said Judith McKinnon, executive director of North Country Ministry, which serves the southeastern Adirondacks.
In addition to hundreds of Generous Acts donors, Adirondack Foundation thanks the following funders for awarding grants to Generous Acts applicants: anonymous (5), Adirondack for Kids Fund, Allison Family Fund, Aseel Legacy Fund, Asgaard Fund, Cloudsplitter Foundation, Community Fund for the Gore Mountain Region, Dignified Death Fund, Hudson Headwaters Health Foundation (Upstream Fund), Joan Grabe Family Fund, Judge Tim & Barbara Murphy Family Fund, Kevin Broderick Fund, Magnus Family Fund, Rhoades Family Fund, Rockledge Fund, SJK Adk Fund, Special and Urgent Needs Fund, Sybil A. Pickett Fund, Treetop Family Fund, Tupper Opportunities for Youth Fund, Uihlein-Ironman Sports Fund of Lake Placid
Since 2014, Generous Acts has awarded nearly $1.7 million in grants. For more information, visit www.adirondackfoundation.org or call (518) 523-9904.