Bluegrass is the style of music that Kentucky is famous for, but the state’s Blue Grass Community Foundation has other things on its agenda than catchy tunes. This local funder is into early childhood education in a big way in Central and Eastern Kentucky, though grant opportunities vary from one county to the next.
Let’s take a closer look at what the Blue Grass Community Foundation has been doing in Kentucky lately.
Last fall, this funder got approval from the Urban County Council in Lexington to raise $50 million to build and maintain Town Branch Commons. This money will be put to use to build parks, water features, and bike/pedestrian-friendly infrastructure along nearly two miles of a public park system. This is a good example of the funder’s local commitment and dedication to urban green space. Foundation members also met with local groups to facilitate the addition of restrooms, trees, and amenities along the popular Legacy Trail near Coldstream Research Park.
Lisa Adkins, the president and CEO of the community foundation said, “Town Branch Commons will have a lasting impact on our city and region, but it also offers the unique opportunity to organize and catalyze philanthropy at a completely new level for Lexington.”
More recently, the community funder also supported an arts cause for youth when it sponsored Superhero Day as part of Transylvania University’s Community Engagement Through the Arts class for elementary school students. The funder also supports local sports, such as youth soccer complexes in need of equipment upgrades and repairs. Blue Grass is working through the Good Giving Challenge to get donations for the Kroger Youth Soccer Complex, with matching donations up to $10,000.
In early 2016, the foundation received a Lauren K. Weinberg Humanitarian Award for its work in creating lasting change in Lexington. Its work on the following projects made it a top contender for this award: Legacy Trail, Lexington East End Equity Partnership, the Isaac Murphy Memorial Art Garden, Food Works Lexington, and Arts Place America/NEA Our Town.
These are just a few recent examples of what the funder has been up to locally. Remember that it has been actively involved in many funding areas over the years, especially early childhood education, cancer and tuberculosis patient care, literacy, and youth enhancement.
To learn more about this funder, check out IP’s full profile, Blue Grass Community Foundation: Southeast (Kentucky) Grants. And to keep up with what this funder is up to in the Lexington area and beyond, you can follow the news section on its website.