Torrington: Draper Fund Awards $700K in Grants

TORRINGTON — The Draper Foundation Fund, a fund of the Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation, recently awarded area nonprofits $714,145. The fund awarded $546,750 to 19 designated nonprofits and $167,395 in donor-advised grants to nonprofits that provide essential programs and services for residents of Northwest Connecticut.

Noteworthy donor-advised grants include $35,000 to Northwestern Connecticut Community College to support the purchase of equipment for a Makerspace that will enhance the college’s STEM curriculum, and $10,250 to Partners for Sustainable Healthy Communities to support the cost of a consultant to establish a long-term relationship between EdAdvance, the Food Hub and area farmers in order to provide fresh local food for schools in the Draper Foundation’s service area.  

FISH of Northwestern Connecticut received $8,000 to support upgrades to commercial kitchen equipment serving shelter residents.

Helping Hands Chore Service received $1,500 to support medical transportation services.

KidsPlay Children’s Museum received $17,500 to support the cost of a public-address system.

LARC received $17,300 to support the cost of a new multi-site phone system.

Litchfield County Opiate Task Force (fiscal sponsor Greenwoods Counseling Referrals) received $48,000 to support the development of a recovery-resource website, including website maintenance and staff training, as well as marketing to community members.

New Beginnings of Northwest Hills Litchfield County received $12,845 to support a wall-mounted first aid kit, conference room furniture and three months of operating expenses.

Northwestern Connecticut Community College received $35,000 to support the purchase of equipment for a Makerspace that will enhance the college’s STEM curriculum.

The Warner Theatre received $9,500 to support the purchase of a refurbished replacement forklift.

Winchester Youth Service Bureau received $7,500 to support the replacement of three computers and the purchase of a new iPad and a new printer. 

Beardsley & Memorial Library; Colebrook Associates, Inc.; Colebrook Congregational Church; Colebrook Historical Society, Inc.; Cornell University for the Cornell Feline Health Center College of Veterinary Medicine; W. L. Gilbert Trust Corporation; Greenwoods Scholarship Foundation, Inc.; Little Guild of St. Francis; Northwestern Connecticut Community College; Northwest Connecticut YMCA; The Salvation Army; Tufts University School of Veterinarian Medicine; the University of Connecticut Foundation, Inc.; Vivisection Investigation League; We Adopt Greyhounds, Inc.; Winchester Youth Service Bureau; Winsted Area Child Care Center, Inc. and Yankee Golden Retriever Rescue, Inc. were the nonprofits designated by the Draper Foundation Fund that received awards twice annually. 

A $30 million endowment from the estate of Jim and Shirley Draper of Colebrook, the Draper Foundation Fund represents the largest single gift in the Community Foundation’s history and one of the largest single gifts on record to a community foundation in Connecticut.

The fund, which has grown to more than $35 million, benefits mainly local charitable organizations by making yearly awards to nonprofits designated by the Drapers, as well as through annual donor‐advised grants, such as those listed above.

Established in 1969, the Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation serves 20 towns in Northwest Connecticut. Its total endowment, comprised of more than 280 funds, has grown from initial assets of $15,000 to more than $110 million.

Last year, combined grants and scholarships totaled more than $4 million.

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