Diversity, Equity, Inclusion


Looking inward and outward in 2020, the Community Foundation expanded its work to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), both in our practices and in the region we serve.  Those efforts build on work we started more than two years ago, when we conducted a preliminary assessment of our Board and staff and updated language Read more

Help Her Run


In 2020, women held 26 percent of the seats in the U.S. Senate and 23.2 percent of seats in the House. Across the nation, 29.3 percent of state legislators were women, according to the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University.  Those numbers are better than they used to be. (In 1981, just 12.1 percent Read more

Our Space, Reborn


The first message came at 1 in the morning: “Jen, it’s all gone.” Next thing Jennifer O’Brien knew, her phone was blowing up with texts. The news was heartbreaking. Our Space Park, a playground in Binghamton’s Recreation Park, designed as an accessible place of joy for people of all ages and abilities, had burned to Read more

Restart the Arts


While other nonprofits struggled to provide essential services during the pandemic, many arts organizations—theaters, museums, orchestras, dance schools, galleries, and more—simply had to close. That shutdown spurred a financial emergency.  In Broome County, for example, arts organizations lost about $1 million in revenues and missed fundraising opportunities, said Nancy Barno Reynolds, executive director of the Read more

New Tools for Schools


School districts invent new ways to serve their students and the broader community. The services that schools provide these days go way beyond the traditional “three Rs”. They also reach deep into our communities. One example is the Whitney Point Central School District’s Early Eagles initiative, a pre-literacy program for families of infants and toddlers.  Read more

Safe on the Farm


Photo of professional test fitting breathing mask.

Mini-grants help agricultural businesses root out conditions that cause sickness and injury. A few years ago, experts at the New York Center for Agricultural Medicine and Health (NYCAMH) identified a flaw in their efforts to keep people who work on farms healthy and safe. NYCAMH would send a specialist to walk through a farm and Read more

Good Food


Several recent grants support programs based on a simple principle: no one should go hungry. Too many people lack reliable access to nutritious food. Luckily, many community groups are working hard to meet this essential need.  Take the Unatego Central School District’s backpack program, which gives students in need healthy food to take home. The Read more

To the Rescue


Grant helps rural ambulance service attract more first responders with advanced skills. With a staff of just 18, the Hancock Ambulance Service stands ready to save lives every day, around the clock, across 164 square miles of Delaware County plus a sliver of Pennsylvania. This extremely rural region is many miles from the nearest trauma Read more

A Better Start for Preschoolers with Special Needs


Children with special needs often can’t get appropriate support when they enter preschool. That’s part of the reason why a child in preschool is three times more likely to be expelled than a child in a K-12 school, says Deborah Fitzgerald, a professional development specialist and coach for early childhood teachers.  Even when a school Read more

Mini-Grants, Maximum Impact


Librarians are champs at squeezing optimal value out of every dollar in a budget. Their ingenuity makes it a special pleasure to support local libraries through the Community Foundation Library Fund.  The fund was born in 2008, on the dissolution of the Broome Library Foundation. That group’s board asked the Community Foundation to take over Read more

Moving Along, Standing Strong


While working on a small scale, some organizations make a deep impact on individual lives. That’s the case with two nonprofits we funded in 2018, both with a focus on empowerment.  The first, Move Along, Inc., gives people with physical limitations a chance to enjoy a variety of sports. One of its programs provides adaptive Read more

Great Music, Close Up and Personal


Photos shows performer, Greg Greenway, on stage and the audience applauding.

A small town can play a big role in a region’s cultural life. That’s surely true of Norwich, Oxford and Oneonta, each of which hosts a musical series or venue that draws fans from miles around. Recent grants from the Community Foundation have helped small, volunteer-powered organizations in these places enrich the local arts scene Read more

Tackling Rural Housing Issues


Otsego Rural Housing Assistance (ORHA) helps homeowners of modest means stay in their homes and keep those dwellings comfortable and safe. Although Otsego County is small—with only about 60,000 people—the need for housing assistance there seems almost limitless, says Timothy Peters, executive director of ORHA, in Cooperstown.  Beyond Cooperstown and Oneonta, Otsego is largely an Read more

For the Good of the Earth


Many small organizations in our region are working to preserve the environment and teach the public about conservation. We supported those efforts with several grants in 2018.  For instance, we awarded $3,259 to the Michael Kudish Natural History Preserve in Stamford. Named to honor Dr. Michael Kudish, who has been researching the natural history of Read more