"Any individual has the capacity to be a philanthropist."

-- Dr. Johnnetta Cole, RWF Awards' Luncheon Speaker

2008 Grant Recipients

DePaul Family Services for their adoption program. The $30,000 grant will provide matching funds for the operation of DePaul Family Services’ adoption program. In March of 2008, 849 children from the area served by the Roanoke Women’s Foundation were living in foster care due to abuse and/or neglect by their birth families. Collaborating with nine local Departments of Social Services, the adoption program works to find permanent, adoptive homes and loving families for foster children with special needs. Through case management and support services, the adoption program also provides hands-on assistance to children and families as they form a new family together. Virginia has the highest rate in the nation of foster children aging out of the child welfare system at 18 without a permanent family. This causes negative financial and social consequences for the community by having individuals with minimal job skills, little family support, and limited day to day functional abilities that are at risk of becoming dependent on public assistance to meet their needs. The $30,000 grant will provide services to include developing life history time-lines, creating a Life Book for the child, child-specific preparation for the family, facilitating pre-placement visits between the child and the family and post-placement supervision until finalization of the adoption.

Bradley Free Clinic to provide medical, dental and pharmacy care to the working uninsured that are at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level. The $32,000 grant from the Roanoke Women’s Foundation will be used to purchase diabetic test strips, glucometer monitors, dental tools and prescriptions. According to the Virginia Atlas of Community Health 2005 Survey, 14% of the Roanoke Valley is uninsured; 14% have not seen a dentist in over two years. In 2006, the Bradley Free Clinic’s dental clinic served 866 patients in 1427 visits. The need in this region is so great that the dental clinic currently has to turn away 200 eligible patients each month. The top three diagnoses at the Clinic are hypertension, depression and diabetes, chronic conditions commonly treated with medication. The Clinic’s pharmacy provided $2.8 million of prescriptions to eligible patients in 2007. They provide patients with diabetes education classes where they are supplied with a glucometer and test strips. Due to stricter regulations and financial documentation requirements, the Clinic has experienced a dramatic reduction in available prescription samples and medications provided by large pharmaceutical companies as part of the Patient Assistance Program. Funds from the RWF will provide support for this on-going need.

Virginia Western Community College Educational Foundation – City of Roanoke Community College Access Program (Pilot Program). A $100,000 RWF grant, the largest grant awarded to date by the Roanoke Women’s Foundation, will be used to provide tuition assistance for 2009 Roanoke City high school graduates starting with the fall semester and concluding after the 2011 spring semester (or completion of the required 72 credits for their program of study, whichever comes first). Eligibility for this need-based program that uses the financial aid process to identify student need includes 2009 graduates from Patrick Henry and William Fleming High Schools. The program will support as many eligible students as possible based on financial need and funds available for the program. Students must enroll full-time at VWCC and meet the minimum 2.0 GPA requirement. The current high school graduation rate of the Roanoke City Schools is a disappointing 52% and the City’s drop-out rate is the tenth highest in the state. The goal of this program is to achieve a 10% increase in graduation rates in the first two years. Roanoke City and the Roanoke City School System will each assume 25% of the funding of the program and additional funding is expected by corporate and business entities as well as the VWCC Foundation. Funds offered by the $100,000 Roanoke Women’s Foundation grant will provide tuition assistance for up to 138 students (from a total of 276 students that would meet criteria for eligibility).



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