FORT SCOTT, Kan. -- The Fort Scott Area Community Foundation recently awarded grants totaling about $10,000 to 10 local nonprofit organizations.
The foundation, an affiliate of the Community Foundation of Southeast Kansas in Pittsburg, presented its 2012 grants during the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce Coffee on Nov. 1 at Citizens Bank.
Formed in 2007, the FSACF hosts a granting cycle each year starting in August during which area nonprofit organizations are invited to submit applications. Grants are awarded in the fall based on the needs shown.
"It (the foundation) serves the area to help fulfill philanthropic goals that people might have for our community," FSACF Chairwoman Janet Braun said.
Braun said funds for the grants come from donations or endowments to the foundation, and only the interest from the fund, not the principal, is used to make grants "to worthy charitable organizations in the community. These organizations help people in the community."
The interest from donated endowed funds will allow this process to continue forever.
"Anyone can donate, or leave funds in wills or trusts," she said. "Endowed funds stay there forever; just the interest is used. The money stays there gaining interest, which is used to give grants. We hope to keep building the endowed fund so the interest becomes larger every year, then we can help more organizations."
Since 2009, the foundation has awarded more than $35,000 in grants to area organizations, Braun said.
"We hope to be able to increase it in years to come," she added.
FSACF board members Shirley Palmer and Carol MacArthur awarded this year's grants, which went to the following organizations:
* Fort Scott Middle School Project ART -- to help cover costs of transportation to productions in Kansas City.
* Care to Share -- to supply 40 $25 gas vouchers.
* The Lowell Milken Center --for audio for the center's African-American display.
* Nazarene Church -- for one 42-inch flat-screen TV for the new downtown nonprofit coffee shop.
* First United Methodist Church -- for condiments and basic ingredients for weekly free meals.
* The Bourbon County Interagency Coalition -- for rent/utilities assistance vouchers.
* Young Life -- to help establish Young Life in Fort Scott.
* Ellis Foundation -- for a scholarship for a student from Bourbon County.
* Big Brothers Big Sisters of Bourbon County -- to fund a match.
The Gordon Parks Center also received a grant which will be used for graphics for the center's interactive display. Funds for this project came from a Dr. Pratt and Pauline Irby Grant, which falls under the umbrella of the FSACF, Braun said.
"It's a specific fund of its own that every year gives a grant with their interest," she said. "The rest (of the grants) are general endowment funds from the foundation."
The FSACF is a resource to nonprofit organizations that improve the quality of life in the area.
"The foundation gives everyone who loves Fort Scott an opportunity to support the community during their lifetime and to continue giving forever in the form of a planned legacy," Braun said. "Donors can both honor the past and impact the future."
For more information, visit the foundation's Web site at www.fsacf.com.