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Foundation launches 'Choose Henry' fund

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The Henry County Community Foundation renamed their “Unrestricted Fund” to the “Choose Henry Flex Fund.” Foundation president Beverly Matthews said the change reflects that grant money stays in Henry County.
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Staff from Hickory Creek in New Castle received$15,265 from the Choose Henry Flex Fund tobuilda courtyard for their residents. The project includes a cement pad, walkway and outdoor shelter.

By TRAVIS WEIK - tweik@thecouriertimes.com

The Henry County Community Foundation has a new name for a grant fund that has actually been helping the community for decades.

The Foundation has given money out of the Unrestricted Fund For Community Grants for more than 30 years. The board of directors decided this year to change the name to the “Choose Henry” Flex Fund to better tell the story about how that money is used.

“Everything we do with this fund is to help Henry (County), our home,” HCCF President Beverly Matthews said.

During the fund launch party Wednesday evening, Matthews quoted the late Patty Danielson, a local philanthropist who helped establish the Henry County Community Foundation all those years ago.

Danielson knew there would be needs in the community that Foundation donors hadn’t prepared for, so they set up an “unrestricted fund” to help fill the gap. 

The Henry County Community Foundation has helped non-profit organizations from Knightstown to Middletown and from Mooreland to Lewisville, Matthews said.

“We reach far and wide in this county,” Matthews said. “The Choose Henry Flex Fund allows that.”

The Henry County Community Foundation gave out nearly $112,000 in Choose Henry grants Wednesday.

The Ark Daycare & Preschool Ministry in Middletown received $15,456 for the preschool’s playground improvement project to provide a safe place for the younger children enrolled there to play on age-appropriate equipment.

In New Castle, Developmental Services, Inc. (DSI) received $6,203.89 for Education and Enrichment Curriculum Kits to provide training tools for adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities.

Eastwood Elementary School in New Castle will use $8,504 in grant money to purchase ADA accessible playground equipment for the school’s special needs playground project.

Located in New Castle, Faith Community provides nonprofit housing to low-income residents 62 and over or those with disabilities. The organization received $13,596 to buy four washers and four dryers.

The Family Services and Prevention Programs’ Henry County Healthy Families program got $4,203 for “Baby Bucks,” which provide safety and child development items for parents in the program.

HCCF awarded the Henry County Historical Society $1,076 for a Collection Cataloging and Virtual Exhibit Project in order to update the museum’s database software.

Hickory Creek, a nonprofit nursing home in New Castle, got $15,265 to fund construction of an outdoor courtyard project for residents.

In partnership with the New Castle Career Center and Purdue Polytechnic, Ivy Tech Community College has been granted $5,250 for “Working Together Trainings” to help strengthen identified soft skills areas in the workplace.

Knightstown Kids, Inc., a youth organization that provides recreational opportunities for youth in Henry, Hancock and Rush counties, received $1,299 to purchase a new Pinewood Derby Track for the Knightstown-area Scouts and Girl Scout troops.

Little Red Door Cancer Agency received $2,500 to assist the Rides of Hope Transportation program to provide gas cards for Henry County cancer patients traveling to doctors’ and treatment appointments.

New Castle City Parks was granted $4,000 to fund lifeguard certification courses for the Lifeguard Certification and Retention Program.

The Foundation gave $5,690 from the Choose Henry Fund to New Castle EMS to purchase body armor for EMS personnel in dangerous situations so they can reach patients in need.

Preserve Henry County, Inc. was granted $12,000 to assist with the restoration of the historic Kaiser building at 1321-23 Broad St., including restoration and reinstallation of the prism glass window tiles, repainting the building façade and window trim and restoring the decorative trim.

The Middletown-area Cub Scouts Pack 453 received $1,143 to purchase a new Pinewood Derby Track.

Second Harvest Food Bank of East Central Indiana got $7,573 from the Choose Henry Flex Fund to help with food procurement and distribution costs related to the Tailgate Program in Henry County.

Secret Families of Henry County got $5,000 this year to help bring holiday festivities to 10 local families.

Wilbur Wright Birthplace and Museum will use $1,000 from the Choose Henry Fund to replace carpet in the museum.

HCCF granted $1,983 so the Youth Opportunity Center, Inc.’s TRU Harbor residential facility can purchase six encrypted radios to ensure conversations between staff are kept private and keep residents safe during their time in the program.

The Henry County Community Foundation is located at 700 S Memorial Drive, New Castle. For more information, call 765- 529-2235 or visit www.henrycountycf.org/