MONTROSE – At age 95, World War II veteran and Montrose resident Russell Cook received his high school diploma in May through a program sponsored by the Montrose School District that awards diplomas to veterans of certain conflicts.
Cook never got to formally finish high school when he was young. He went to work, and then in 1942 he joined the Army Air Force.
Receiving his diploma inspired Cook, a life-long learner, to contribute $1,000 to the Montrose Community Foundation, which established the Cook Education Fund, the newest of many grants that the foundation is offering.
“He wants to give grants to organizations that encourage kids to stay in school and stay successful,” said Melanie Hall, executive director of the foundation.
“We love grants that encourage teachers and nonprofits to do something out of the ordinary and catch kids’ attention and do something for their future,” she said.
Now in its 21st year, the Montrose Community Foundation has over the years directed more than $250,000 “into the hands of worthwhile community organizations to further their efforts in growing the Montrose Community,” according to the foundation’s website.
Last year, competitive grants totaling $18,000 were awarded to 11 organizations, with typical grants ranging from $1,000 to $2,000.
Community Foundation grants will not fund individual medical expenses, administrative costs, travel expenses, college scholarships (which the foundation has a separate program for,) and requests for less than $250.
Recent recipients include the City of Montrose River Corridor Project, All Points Transit, Altrusa Lifeline Project, Volunteers of America Senior Meals, Black Canyon Boys and Girls Club, Partners, Lion’s Club Vision Screening, Special Olympics, Dolphin House, Montrose Animal Protection Agency, and the RSVP Handyman Program.
Grant applications are accepted by the foundation year-round, Hall said, but the 2010 Competitive Cycle closes Nov. 1. Recipients will be announced in December and grant monies will be awarded in January.
To learn more about foundation grants and how to apply, log onto their website at www.montrosecf.com or call Hall at 901-6575.