Grants Awarded 2017

Presbytery of Genesee Valley

Healthier Congregations Team: Grants Working Group

 2017 Grants to Congregations

 (excerpts from the grant applications)

Batavia, First              Sharing the Love of God in Our Community                                   $1,450

Our project is the complete transformation of our church, establishing Core Values, our Mission Statement, and aligning our objectives to these values. It entails “sharing the love of God in our communities” by realigning our outreach from inward to outward.  We are working on developing a partnership with Jackson Primary School of Batavia.

Brockport, First          Community Dinner One Sunday a Month                           $   500

We will partner ecumenically with other churches to provide one community meal a month on Sunday. The Episcopal Church currently serves on two Sundays a month and the Baptist Church serves on one Sunday.  Our participation would enable a community meal on every Sunday of each month.

Caledonia, First          Source of Success (SOS) After School Program                    $1,000

The SOS program operates 4 days/week during the school year and is staffed by a Director and adult and peer volunteers who are supported by a Board of Directors. SOS is also an approved site for the Foster Grandparent Program of Livingston County.  Our largest expenses are a salary for the Program Director and the cost of supplies, utilities and building maintenance.  Activities are primarily designed as an academic resource.  However, additional volunteers also teach crafts, cooking skills or specific topics which could include nutrition, bullying and substance abuse.

Corfu United              Pembroke Central Schools Backpack Program                    $1,500

This new backpack program will provide food on weekend days for children who qualify for and rely on free or reduced-price meals on school days. The objective of the program is to launch a new program that will assist 30 high-need low-income students by sending food for weekend meals and snacks home with them on Fridays throughout the school year.

Gates                          Reality Tour – February Mission Experience                                   $   900

The Reality Tour is a four-hour bus tour of Rochester designed by the Social Welfare Action Alliance to help participants begin to understand the extent and experience of everyday economic injustice for our neighbors. Participants hear from people affected by the dysfunctional social and economic system that fails to meet basic human needs. We are also in partnership with ROC SALT pilot mission team and plan to offer a two-day mission experience over the winter school break Feb. 20-22, 2018.  The tour includes 40 participants.  Find more information at .

Geneseo Central        Geneseo Community Garden                                                           $   750

Grant funds are requested to help underwrite the costs associated with transformation of a decorative garden at Central Presbyterian Church into a community vegetable garden to involve and to benefit the Geneseo/Groveland Food Pantry, the Second Street ARC House, SUNY Geneseo and members of our church.

Holley, First                Engaging Narrative Change to Discern God’s New Call            $1,250

This project results from a Session discussion of our financial future and led to a broader discussion about change, transformation, renewal and church growth. Working with The Rev. Dr. Carson Mouser, a three-step plan using the Narrative Change Process was described.  This includes meetings with the Session, a congregational retreat, and coaching opportunities for the Session and the Pastor. It is our hope that new ministries will emerge reaching deeper into the community.

Honeoye Falls            Puppet Ministry                                                                     $   250

The Puppet Ministry is striving to purchase a video camera to assist in the production of movies that will be used to bring new technology into the church and help it to share its messages with multiple generations. With the incorporation of the word of God, pop culture and modern humor, we will be able to produce shows that appeal to all ages. The Senior High Youth have really bought into the new style of the Puppet Ministry and are excited with the idea of moving into the digital world.

Lima                            Five Concert Organ and Music Series                                   $   350

We would like to host a series of five organ and musical concerts in 2018-2019 to introduce the community to pipe organ music, celebrate our restored pipe organ, bring together local churches and our Valley Neighbor Presbyterian Churches. A shared project provides our congregation the opportunity to work together, strengthening our bonds of friendship, church family and community, and perhaps forging new bonds.

South              Acts of Faith Support:            Hospital Partnership & Monroe Milers            $   650

Our most recent Act of Faith – Sonray Fellowship – is worship and Bible Study in the Regional Forensic Unit of the Rochester Psychiatric Center. These persons have each been identified as persons with a mental illness or defect.  Another Act of Faith is the Monroe Milers program.  This is a program for children and youth ages 6 and above that takes place for 8 weeks in the spring and 8 weeks in the fall. 60 or more youth participate, and our grant will help offset the registration fees, cost of sneakers, etc. for youth unable to pay for these things.

Trinity Emmanuel      Second Chance                                                                     $1,500

Our grant will support a new program to develop spiritual revitalization endeavors through offering women from single teen mothers to grandmothers raising grandkids a regular forum to come together and share their experiences with one another at monthly Saturday group meetings from noon to 2p.m.

Warsaw                      Food Pantry                                                                           $   750

The project involves the purchase of a computer and printer for use in the Warsaw Food Pantry, a mission housed in the United Church of Warsaw and serving clients throughout Wyoming County. We seek to install a database to be used to maintain Food Pantry clients’ information.

2017 Grants to Community Agencies

68 Ashland Street                  South Wedge Food Program                                     $2,000

The South Wedge Food Program (SWFP) has been established to continue the long-time faithful ministry of the Calvary-St. Andrews Food program. The SWFP is comprised of three distinct, yet connected components:  Emergency Food Cupboard, which serves guests three days/week; The Foodlink Mobile Food Pantry which operates twice each month; and, The Alison Clarke Community Garden. SWFP hopes to hire a very part-time food program coordinator.  This grant will help with the start-up costs for that.

Building Minds in South Sudan (BMISS)      Solar Lamps                                        $2,000

BMISS has completed one co-ed primary school in South Sudan and nearly completed a second all girls’ primary school. Over 300 girls attend the co-ed school and over 600 girls attend the all girls’ school. However, their large village, Mayen-Abun, has no electricity other than from commercial pay generators which are not available to students. After school, girls must do home chores (a culture thing).  Often darkness falls before they can do their homework.  Small, low-cost solar lamps provide a solution.

Center for Teen Empowerment (TE)             Youth Engaging Parents                    $2,000

This grant will support an effort to engage parents in expanding youth leadership and employment opportunities to more neighborhoods in Rochester. TE’s successful initiatives invest young people in solutions to help transform struggling Rochester neighborhoods into strong, healthy communities where violence and fear are replaced by unity, dignity and hope.  Youth Organizers gain vocational and career skills while inspiring their peers and community leaders to take an active role in creating the changes that our city needs.

Conkey Cruisers                     Youth Sports, Transportation, Leadership               $1,075

The Global Cruisers Youth Sports, Transportation & Leadership Initiative uses sports and transportation modality training to promote civic engagement and foster a deeper understanding of local and global social issues to prepare young people to navigate their environments and to lead in the 21st century.  The experience builds on community partnerships and the leadership skills of pre-teens and teens already actively engaged in Conkey Cruisers Inc.

Coffee Connection (CC)              Building a Not-for-profit Business                                   $2,000

The Presbytery’s support of the CC for several years enabled us to create jobs for more than 30 women in recovery from addiction. A new grant this fall from the National Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) will move us more closely to our goal of women in the program being able to completely run the non-profit business and organization.  Their $60,000 grant requires matching funds.  This grant will help us to meet that goal.  The funds go directly toward sustaining existing jobs and creating new ones and then providing training to continue building a vital, effective staff.

Judicial Process Commission             JPC’s New Journey                                         $2,000

JPC’s New Journey program will provide empowering support to 45-55 ex-offender mothers plus their children with service coordination and referrals to needed services (medical, mental health, legal, etc.), wrap-around services, (e.g., household items, identifications), therapeutic support groups, and mentors to assist them in securing a healthy lifestyle and stable future.

Lagom Landing                       Tapping into God’s Sweet Love in our Midst            $1,500

Lagom Landing (LL) is a 9-month residential program providing 18-25-year old’s a unique opportunity to build a foundation for the rest of their lives. For the past four years, LL has been tapping sugar maple trees in the spring, and processing that sap into maple syrup.  “Tapping into God’s Sweet Love in Our Midst” is our attempt to share the LL experience with others.  We will invite all ages to join us in every step of the process – from gathering materials, to tapping, to collecting and boiling, to finishing and bottling, to marketing and selling the syrup.  The grant monies will also help us be more organized and offset some expenses in our syrup production.

 REACH Advocacy    Homeless Shelter/Permanent Housing for Chronically Homeless            $2,000

REACH Advocacy advocates for safe, financially sustainable housing options to meet the needs of chronically homeless individuals by ensuring services needed and encouraging mutual care. We are hopeful that in the future we will be able to devote more of our time and resources to renovating buildings into permanent, supported housing for the chronically homeless along with advocating for the chronically homeless in other ways in our area.  If we don’t do something to increase the number of permanent homes for the chronically homeless we will continue to need to provide emergency shelter during our coldest months.

Rural and Migrant Ministries (RMM)     Liturgia Worker Education Center            $2,000

RMM provides educational classes for farmworkers, including English as a Second Language, a 2-week Day Camp for farmworker youth during the summer, a place for college students to come and do Internships, and Alternative Spring Breaks for college students. Many congregations have partnered with RMM to host dinners.  Our greatest joy has been in facilitating the developing of relationships between our neighbors – invisible men, women and children farmworker populations and our religious community of allies.

The Children’s Agenda          Interfaith Youth Leadership Development              $1,075

The Interfaith Youth Leadership Development project will identify and train youth from different faith traditions to learn and work together to improve the lives of Monroe County-area children through social justice advocacy. Presbyterian youth will join with youth from other faith traditions to learn about advocacy and social change, plan and implement an advocacy plan, share their experiences with their home congregations, and participate in the 2018 Children’s Sabbath celebration.

Worker Justice Center of NY Alianza Agricola                                                         $1,700

The Alianza Agricola (Agricultural Alliance) is a group led by and comprised of immigrant farmworkers in Western and Central New York. Participants engage in efforts to educate the community about immigrant farmworkers and their aspirations.  The group is currently focused on an effort to win driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants as part of the statewide Green Light Driving Together campaign.  The Alianza Agricola is supported by many groups of allies as well as individuals who work alongside us to fight for immigrants’ rights.

PC(USA) Young Adult Volunteer              Lauren Rye, Third Presbyterian             $2,000

Lauren is serving as a Young Adult Volunteer (YAV) in Asheville, NC. Lauren is working with the S.T.R.I.V.E. Mentoring Program.  This program pairs local college students with elementary students in some of Asheville’s public housing neighborhoods.  S.T.R.I.V.E. seeks to promote a love for learning and an interest in higher education, as well as building positive role-model relationships with the elementary students.

Peacemaking Grants

Penfield Presbyterian                                     Mindfulness as Peacemaking                     $1,350

This project is an instructional and experiential series of five separate workshops offered to the church and the wider community to increase understanding of, and capacity to engage in, a variety of mindfulness practices to develop empathy, perspective, and presence. Specific workshop content is guided by peacemaking ideals and will include an emphasis on the foundational understanding that contemplative practices (mindfulness tools) can be transformative.  The workshops will be led by John Stewart, of “Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute”.

Pre-Trial Services Corp. (PTSC)         Human Trafficking/Prostitution                 $1,000

PTSC provides direct support and case management services to the Human Trafficking Intervention Court (HTIC) in the city of Rochester. HTIC recognizes that human trafficking is prevalent in sex work and its goal is to empower individuals to break free from the lifestyle that trauma, addiction and mental illness has created.  A large barrier, however, is a lack of transportation to necessary appointments with treatment and community agencies.  This project will provide bus passes to HTIC participants. It will also provide a small contingency budget to be utilized for emergency situations that are not covered in any other manner.