We are excited to announce the awarded Altrusa Clubs and Club 21 organizations this cycle. Click the links below to see cycle one 2021 grants.
Established in 1997, the Club 21 Program is committed to supporting programs for children affected by disease and disabilities; as well as international healthcare curriculum. As members of Club 21, we are given an opportunity to extend a hand to these children and families.
Thank you for your support.
Each month, the Foundation highlights the great work of Altrusa Clubs through the Grants Program. The spotlight this month is on “Easterseals Dolly Parton Imagination Library (DPIL) Expansion”, a service project completed by Altrusa International of Columbus, Ohio, Inc.
“This is the best program for kids that I have ever come across! My daughter loves to read, we read 3 books before bed time every night. I cannot afford what I would like to buy for her, so we end up rereading a lot of books. She never complains. The Imagination Library has helped us add new books to our routines and my daughter loves them! I truly appreciate Dolly Parton and her efforts. There is not worse to even express how grateful I am,” said an anonymous parent.
The DPIL, administered by Easterseals, provides a free book each month to children ages birth to five living in Franklin County including the Hilliard and Hilltop areas. The program’s objective is to assist children to learn to love to read at an early age. In addition an Ages and Stages questionnaire is sent to all of the participants twice a year. The questionnaire provides a quick look at how children are doing in important areas of development such as communication, physical ability, social skills and problem solving skills. It helps identify a child’s strengths as well as area where support is needed. It assists in identifying children who have fallen through the cracks due to a lack of medical attention or lack of knowledge on the part of their family. It serves as a “child find” that may have development disabilities.
The Columbus Club has partnered with Easterseals and the DPIL for the past 7 years. The program has grown substantially over the last five years and they were unable to serve all of the families that signed up. Children who are read to by their parents are shown to be more confident and have better emotional development skills. Children who are provided with the tools they need will have a great chance of learning to read, succeeding in school and eventually graduating from high school.
The Columbus Club applied and received a $4000 grant from the International Foundation. The plan was for the club to host two community events for the families and their children. Members would plan the event, greet the families and read to the children. They would also set up and run crafts and game stations. The purpose of these events is to build excitement in the community and the program and to promote parent involvement by reading to their young children.
“We loved the book choices, the lessons involved and how close it has made our family. Thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, thank you,” said an anonymous parent.
The International Foundation Grant allowed Easterseals to add 100 children right away. The children began receiving books in January 2020. Soon the Governor’s office decided to provide funding for the DPIL program throughout Ohio. Because of this, a play was to be held at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus. The Altrusa Club of Columbus, Ohio was informed of this at their March 2020 meeting, the last in-person meeting held. The Altrusans were excited about the Governor’s funding and the change in plans allowing them to participate in planning and implementing the performances at the Children’s Hospital.
“Our members were grateful that 100 more families in our area are receiving DPIL books as a result of the Altrusa International Grant, but sad that the COVID pandemic prohibited our club members involvement with this project,” said Mary Smithson, the Columbus Club Altrusa Grants Chair.
The $4,000 grant received from the Altrusa International Foundation helped to pay for the purchased of the various range of books for the DPIL to distribute. Grants of $250 to $4000 are available through sponsoring Altrusa Clubs from the Altrusa International Foundation to improve the economic well-being and quality of life through the foundation’s commitment to community service and literacy. With the advent of the coronavirus, the club was unable to participate in the joy of reading to the children and meeting the families.
Established as a charitable corporation in 1962, the Altrusa International Foundation is committed to the service of goals and objectives of Altrusa International, Inc. Its sole purpose is to be an avenue through which Altrusans can assist Altrusa Clubs and other worthy organizations throughout the world, to carry out their programs of community service and assistance to those in need.
Leslie Johnson, Foundation Trustee
Mary Smithson, Club President of Altrusa International of Columbus, Ohio
The Altrusa International Foundation was established in 1962 as the charitable arm of Altrusa International. It funds the development and implementation of effective community services and leadership programs around the world. In total, over three million dollars have been given in community service grants and educational scholarships through our international outreach, committed to improving economic well-being and quality of life.
In the past five years, we have:
Thank you for your support of the Altrusa International Foundation, Inc.