NORWOOD – The Uncompahgre Medical Center has received a grant totaling $86,793 from the Colorado Health Foundation. Funds will be used to leverage American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 dollars, and go toward providing equipment and furniture, completing an expansion of the facility scheduled for completion by June 2010. The UMC, a full-service family practice serving the San Miguel River Basin, ensures that everyone has access to quality health care through affordability, creative staffing and careful management, and does not deny health care based on financial limitations.
Mosaic Community Project Announces 2009 BIG IDEAS Grant Winners
RIDGWAY – Climbing walls and cabin fever…renewable energy and ice-skating…Latin American dance, summer reading programs and an elementary school greenhouse…what do all of these things have in common? All are the BIG IDEAS of Ouray County citizens, and our local nonprofit Mosaic Community Project has granted a combined total of $2,547 in 2009 to bring these big ideas to life.
The Big Ideas Project goal is to inspire and empower Ouray County citizens to contribute to their community in a meaningful manner. With the help of a generous grant from the Telluride Foundation, MCP is able to provide funding for projects that are in step with its mission to promote education, the visual and performing arts, sustainable living practices and environmental awareness in Ouray County. MCP grants the seed money needed for the proposed project while participants are required to double the money provided by MCP through their own fundraising efforts.
Karla Cline, from the Voyager Youth Program, received the maximum funding of $500 to assist with construction costs of a climbing wall in the Ridgway Secondary gymnasium. The Ouray County Climbing Team has proven to be a highly effective educational program, tapping into the thrill-seeking tendencies of youth and focusing their energy into a healthy sport. Voyager is fundraising through a student-driven “Climb-a-thon” and has received a number of in-kind donations from other community members to help make the climbing wall a reality. Voyager’s other grant, for $250, was awarded to support Cabin Fever Day, designed to support the principle that healthy families are the foundation of healthy youth and a healthy community. With cross- country ski races, a scavenger hunt, orienteering and hot drinks, Cabin Fever Day encourages families to spend time together while experiencing the beauty of winter in Ouray County.
Teacher Matt Wade and a group of students from Ridgway High School saw a need for renewable energy education learned in a hands-on, innovative way, and received $375 to study solar energy through the installation of a 10-watt solar panel on the school that will generate enough energy to power a student-made iPod listening station in the student lounge. Will Clapsadl, founder of Rotary Ice Needs Kids (R.I.N.K.) received $500 toward this year’s annual fundraising event at the ice rink, the Second Annual Ouray Flat Ice Festival in January of 2010. His goal? To raise enough money to install a full-service ice-skating facility that will double as a place for summer meetings, farmers markets, festivals and other fun events.
At Ridgeway Elementary School, Spanish teacher Kelly Charrier received $100 to bring in a Latin American dance teacher from Columbia; teacher Robyn Cascade received $322 to implement her summer reading program; and Jill Markey’s “Growing Green” project received $500 earmarked for building a greenhouse at the school.
MCP still has grant money available for other Big Ideas. Anyone interested in the Big Ideas Project should go to www.mosaiccp.org and download an application or send an email to: email@example.com. Applicants may apply for up to $500.
Public Discussion of Regional Economic Futures Dec. 7
The greater Telluride community is invited to take part in a presentation about shaping our region’s economy in a way that supports our community’s shared values when the Regional Economic Futures Task Force presents its findings and its future goals at the next Intergovernmental Meeting, Monday, Dec. 7 at 9 a.m. in the Mountain Village Town Hall (above the Mountain Village Market.) The public is encouraged to attend.
REFTF is based on the premise that in recent history, the Telluride region’s economy has been shaped in large part by outside market forces, and that as we move forward, the community should take a larger role in shaping its own future.
With real-estate sales and construction projects languishing, and with our governments committed to lowering carbon emissions, it’s essential to examine our values and shape our economic future.
To do this, the task force needs community participation, solid data, knowledge of the region’s baseline parameters, agreement on our community values and vision, and a plan to move forward that supports those values. It includes representatives from each of the local governments as well as representatives from Telski, Marketing Telluride, Inc., the Telluride Foundation, the business community, the Commission on Arts and Special Events, TNCC, the U.S. Forest Service and individual citizens.
The Regional Economic Futures Task force hopes to engage all members of the regional community who care to help shape the future in a way that protects our community and the environment. The December 7 presentation is just the first step, and the task force will hold numerous public workshops in the months to come.
For more information, please contact San Miguel County Commissioner, Joan May, 970/728-3844 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or the New Community Coalition, 970/728-1340.
Bright Futures Awards $7,464 for Early Childhood Education
SAN MIGUEL, OURAY, MONTROSE, DELTA COUNTIES – The Bright Futures Early Childhood Regional Council, a coalition made up of the four counties, San Miguel, Ouray, Montrose and Delta, dedicated to providing leadership, innovation, influence, and resources to ensure our region has a high quality early childhood system, recently awarded $7,464 to 19 childcare providers within the region. The purpose of the Bright Futures’ Quality Improvement Provider Grants is to improve the quality of Early Childhood Education in licensed childcare facilities. Of the $7,464 awarded, $4,838 was given to improve the learning environment, going to purchase of new toys, books and equipment necessary to run a childcare.
“The licensed home providers are among the majority of recipients for these grants,” said Cathy James, Executive Director of Bright Futures. “They generally are opening their personal homes to the public and they may not have items like playground equipment, security systems, fences or sun shade. Finding the funds to start any business is hard. We are glad we can help them with these expenses. In turn, these items are sustainable and provide hours of creative play, safety and education for young children.”
Bright Futures also awarded $659 towards education and training required of every licensee, and approximately $1,900 towards the purchase of evidence-based curriculums. “It is the Regional Council’s goal for all licensed childcare providers in our area to have access to an evidence based curriculum in their program,” said James.
“The providers are so appreciative of these grants,” said Jill Burchmore, Bright Futures Program Manager. “It is a warm fuzzy feeling to call each recipient and personally tell them how we’d like to help. Then, we personally deliver the check to their facilities, meet them and see where our funds are working.” Bright Futures Regional Council extends over more than 300 square miles from Telluride to Nucla, Naturita and Paradox to Paonia and Cedaredge. “I talk to our providers on the phone every day, but I’m like a radio DJ to them,” stated Burchmore. “It’s nice to put a face to the voice.” James and Burchmore personally visited over 25 facilities in Montrose and Delta counties over the last month. “We have a large region and it’s hard to visit everyone,” exclaimed James. “Yet, of the sites we did visit, we are very pleased at the quality of early childhood facilities in our area and we are very excited to help them excel even farther!”
The Bright Futures Regional Early Childhood Council is largely funded from the Colorado Department of Education. Bright Futures has two grant cycles, in the fall and spring. Providers are eligible for Quality Improvement Grants once per year. However, this year, the council has one-time stimulus money available to spend towards curriculums and activity bags for families; a partnership with regional libraries. Providers have the ability to apply for these funds in addition to what they may have already received.
Bright Futures for Early Childhood and Families is a non-profit 501C3 organization supporting children birth to age 5 in providing quality child care and education. The Bright Futures Regional Early Childhood Council is one of 31 Early Childhood Councils in the state of Colorado appointed by Governor Ritter. Bright Futures is a resource and referral service for both licensed childcare professionals and parents, providing free trainings, education and pre-licensing courses in the four counties as well as Gunnison and Hinsdale counties. To find childcare in your area, please visit, www.qualistar.org or call toll free at 877-728-5613 or locally at 970-728-5613. For more information on Bright Futures, visit www.brightfuturesforchildren.org.