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Ventura County Community Foundation Grants Bolster After-School Learning for Local Students

New grants awarded by the Community Response Fund at the Ventura County Community Foundation will support such efforts as tutoring homeless students and helping low-income youngsters who have fallen behind in their math and science studies.

VCCF recently gave six local nonprofit organizations a total of $20,750 for community-based after-school programs, particularly in underserved areas.

“This is a further deepening of VCCF’s outreach to strengthen nonprofits serving area youth,” said Hugh J. Ralston, VCCF president and CEO.

The need is so critical, Ralston said, that for the first time VCCF has set aside funds from its unrestricted grant monies for this issue, which is not addressed by VCCF’s other grants programs.

“Our board and grants committee focused on after-school programs this year as a critical part of local communities’ efforts to help our young people transition through adolescence safely,” Ralston said. “We received 24 proposals and could fund only a few of these programs doing such good work.”

El Centrito Family Learning Centers in Oxnard received $5,000 to support the Adelante Math Club, the Science Academy, Community Technology Center and the Family Nights to help students who have fallen behind, particularly in math and science.

School on Wheels was granted $3,000 for after-school tutoring for homeless elementary and middle-school students in Ventura County.

The Boys & Girls Club of Greater Oxnard & Port Hueneme was awarded $4,000 for the Power Hour Homework and Tutoring Program for youth ages 6 through 12.

Big Brothers & Big Sisters of Ventura County received $4,000 for weekly tutoring of an estimated 200 pupils in Santa Paula and Fillmore elementary schools to help them complete their homework and improve their reading skills.

The $4,000 awarded to Casa Pacifica in Camarillo will go toward recreational therapy that complements young people’s academics with activities such as sports, crafts and athletics.

A $750 grant will help support the Homework Tutoring Club at Many Mansions in Thousand Oaks.

One of VCCF’s core values is investing in Ventura County’s youth. VCCF is the local leader in awarding scholarships to Ventura County students, giving out more than $9.6 million in the past two decades to 3,500 students.

VCCF’s Destino: The Hispanic Legacy Fund focuses its grantmaking on helping Latino students prepare to go college, a complement to the Destino scholarship fund that supports students who are the first in their families to attend college. The Center for Nonprofit Leadership at VCCF places university students as interns with local nonprofits to create the next generation of philanthropic leaders.

VCCF’s Community Response Fund was established by local donors in 1999 and annually supports a wide variety of community projects.

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