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Arsht-Cannon Awards $667k+ in Grants to Improve Lives of Hispanics in Delaware

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Hispanic families in Delaware are benefiting from increased access to education and health care with the support of $677,841 in grants from the Arsht-Cannon Fund (ACF), an endowed fund at the Delaware Community Foundation (DCF). 

Some of the 2017-18 grants were awarded in June and the remainder are being issued this week. Over the past 13 years, the ACF has invested nearly $9 million in Delaware nonprofits focused on education, health care and youth, with a particular focus on improving the lives of Hispanic Delawareans As our Hispanic communities benefit, the quality of life for all Delawareans improves.

1-Immigrant family integration:

Lutheran Church of Our Savior’s English as a Second Language Program – $50,000 (2 years): Helping approximately 150 adults and their children learn to read, write and speak English.

Polytech Adult Education’s Family Literacy Program – $50,000 (2 years): Breaking the cycle of poverty and illiteracy by providing educational opportunities to low-income and immigrant adults and their children.

Latin American Community Center (LACC) English as a Second Language (ESL) and Nurturing Parenting programs – $30,000: Continuing its ESL program and providing a new parenting-skills program.

Friends of Bear Public Library and Friends of Route 9 Library and Innovation Center – $3,500: Offering Plaza Comunitaria program at both libraries that includes basic-, elementary- and intermediate-level school courses in Spanish for immigrants age 15 and over.

Delaware Readiness Teams – $10,000: Translating and disseminating information about early kindergarten registration for Spanish-speaking Latino parents; gathering data to provide help to parents preparing preschoolers for kindergarten.

Friends of Wilmington Parks – $1,800: Buying books in Spanish for preschool and kindergarten nature programs.

Friends of Milton Library and Friends of Garfield Park Library – $5,500: In partnership with the Delaware Hispanic Commission, holding the annual celebration of Latino culture and community at the Milton Library in Sussex County and, for the first time this year, at the new Route 9 Library and Innovation Center in New Castle County.

Delaware Community Reinvestment Action Council, Inc.’s ESL & Low Income Tax Clinic – $25,000: Helping Latino immigrant families statewide resolve tax issues.

2-Kindergarten through College Programs that improve life trajectories:

Reading Assist, Inc.’s Reading Corps Reading Intervention Program – $25,000: Recruiting, training and supervising bilingual reading tutors for first- through third-grade students in the Colonial School District.

Sussex Tech Adult Education’s Healthy Snacks for 21st CCLC – $8,500: Providing snacks and food for their after-school programs and field trips.

UrbanPromise Wilmington’s Street Leaders Program – $25,000: Increasing the number of Wilmington’s Hispanic youth leading and participating in their afterschool and summer programs, which focus on developing teens personally and academically in a nurturing environment.

Summer Learning Collaborative, Inc. – $36,000: Expanding this successful summer camp program, focused on reducing the summer learning gap for middle school-aged children in low income families, to Sussex County during the summer of 2017.

La Esperanza Community Center’s Youth Immigration Advocacy Program – $20,000: Planning and piloting a Youth Advocacy Program to support the development, academic success, and rights of Latino youth in its surrounding Georgetown community.

PeaceWork, Ltd. – $10,000: Expanding programs to provide arts, yoga and gardening activities to at-risk youth living at the New Castle County Youth Detention Center.

Leading Youth through Empowerment (LYTE) – $12,000: Planning to expand capacity to recruit, enroll, and engage Latino 8th through 12th grade students in their college access afterschool and summer program.

TeenSHARP Inc.’s College Access Ambassador Program – $20,000: Expanding and recruiting additional Latino high school students into its program, which expands college access for students of color.

TeenSHARP Inc.’s Delaware Goes to College Academies – $34,000: Providing academic advising and coaching for college admission for up to 600 Delaware qualified youth during the 2017-18 school year.

Nativity Preparatory School of Wilmington’s Hispanic Graduate Support Program – $20,000 (2 years): Enabling Nativity Preparatory School of Wilmington to provide continuing guidance to their middle school graduates (and their Spanish-speaking parents), through high school and college.

3-Increased Access to Quality Bilingual Mental/Behavioral Healthcare:

National Alliance on Mental Illness Delaware’s Hispanic Services Initiative – $75,000 (2 years): Expanding outreach to the Hispanic community to increase knowledge of mental illness and reduce barriers to access of care in Kent and Sussex County.

Family Counseling Center of St. Paul’s – $30,000: Educating Latino families in Wilmington on access to mental health care, expanding capacity for screenings to better direct clients, and training new clinicians.

Ronald McDonald House of Delaware’s Housing Program for Delaware’s Hispanic Families – $10,000: Expanding support services for Latino families staying at the Ronald McDonald House while their child is receiving care at a local hospital.

Latino Mental Health Workforce Program – $16,500: Providing partial tuition assistance for three bilingual graduate students, who have committed to work as mental health professionals in Delaware after graduation.

Sussex County Health Coalition – $50,000:  Facilitating an environmental health assessment focused on behavioral health and expanding school-based mental/behavioral programs to Latino students.

4-Advocacy for Education Achievement and Health Equity

Rodel Foundation’s Social Emotional Learning Landscape Study – $20,000: Providing critical information on Delaware’s SEL efforts, student needs, evidence-based practices, evaluation measures, and advice to scale up successful efforts and align with needs.

Rodel Foundation’s English Learners in Delaware – $20,000: In partnership with the Delaware Hispanic Commission’s Education Committee, conducting data collection and analysis to address educational disparities in a series of 5 fact sheets and secure state funding for English learners.

Delaware Campaign for Achievement Now (Delaware NOW) – $60,000: Engaging students, parents, communities, teachers, and organizations to urgently advocate for educational policies for student success – higher graduation rates, test scores, and college enrollments for Latino students.

UnidosUS (formerly National Council of La Raza) – $5,000: In partnership with the Rodel Foundation, developing advocacy and awareness plans for English learners in Delaware.

The Arsht-Cannon Fund was created in 2004 from the estate of the Honorable Roxana Cannon Arsht and S. Samuel Arsht. Roxana Cannon Arsht was the first woman to be appointed to serve as a Delaware judge, while her husband S. Samuel Arsht was well-respected for overhauling Delaware’s General Corporation Law. Their daughter, Adrienne Arsht, said, “My parents’ desires to invest in the needs of the times- supporting the best interests of a civil society- are actualized by supporting this newest wave of immigrants.”

“We’re honored to partner with a growing number of Hispanic-serving non-profits that provide life-changing opportunities for integration, learning and health,” said ACF Executive Director Dr. Christine Cannon. “Our Hispanic families face unique challenges that require understanding, culturally-sensitive approaches, and expert program bilingual staff and volunteers who care deeply.”

“We’re proud of the impact of the Arsht-Cannon Fund,” said DCF President and CEO Stuart Comstock-Gay. “The focus on Hispanic families fosters a community where everyone can feel welcome and succeed. Supporting a diverse and healthy community is at the core of the DCF’s mission.”