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Lilly GIFT VII grant to help provide childcare in Henry County

Star Press
Published 9:21 a.m. ET Oct. 1, 2020

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NEW CASTLE, Ind. — The Henry County Community Foundation has received a Community Leadership Grant of $100,000 as part of the seventh phase of Lilly Endowment’s Giving Indiana Funds for Tomorrow (GIFT VII) initiative.

With the grant, the community foundation will partner with HOPE Initiative (HOPE) to pilot a Childcare House located near three large employers: Boar’s Head, Draper Inc., and Ivy Tech Community College, all of which cater to parents who need to work or attend class, but have no convenient, healthy/safe place to leave their children from infant age 5, causing parents to quit jobs or be prone to absenteeism, or causing them to leave their children in risky situations, according to a release.

“Early childhood quality care has been an issue in our community for quite some time and we are extremely grateful and excited about this grant to create quality, affordable childcare in our community,” Beverly Matthews, president and executive director of the local community foundation, said in the release.

Henry County Community Foundation is one of 84 foundations in Indiana receiving grants through this round of GIFT VII grantmaking. Lilly Endowment created GIFT in 1990 to help local communities in Indiana develop the philanthropic capacity to identify local needs and challenges. It launched GIFT VII in 2018 and made available a total of $125 million to help foundations strengthen their leadership capacities in the towns, cities and counties they serve. Lilly Endowment expects to make additional GIFT VII grants in the coming months, the release stated.

As part of GIFT VII, Henry County Community Foundation was awarded a planning grant of $50,000 in 2019 to convene local stakeholders to identify, prioritize and assess opportunities and challenges in Henry County. In March 2020, the Community Foundation was invited to apply for a GIFT VII Community Leadership Grant to implement strategies and activities identified during the planning period.

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“With Lilly Endowment’s planning grant we were able to host a two-day ‘Community Prosperity Workshop’ where both our board and community members came together to learn more about the makeup of Henry County and to evaluate our most pressing needs,” Mike Broyles, 2020 board chair of the Henry County Community Foundation, said in the release.

Working with the New Castle Henry County Economic Development Corporation, HOPE Initiative and businesses, the community can expect to see quality “Childcare Houses” throughout the county that will create approximately 240 additional slots for children ages birth to 5 over the next three years.

“By supplying quality, affordable childcare in our community, parents can feel safe going to work and employers can attract skilled employees with families and grow our population, which is a long-range goal,” Matthews. added.

For more information about the Henry County Community Foundation, go to henrycountycf.org or call 765-529-2235.

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