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AAWGT: Making a difference in our community!

Full Circle News:
The Power of One ... Multiplied by Many

June-July 2017

Announcing the AAWGT 2017 Grantees

AAWGT membership has voted to award a record $111,729 to eight area nonprofit organizations for the year beginning July 1. This brings our total investment since 2007 to more than $900,000–all contributions toward improving the lives of women and families in Anne Arundel County.

We offer our sincere thanks and appreciation to the 30 AAWGT members who participated on the 2017 Grants Review Teams. These volunteers engaged in a rigorous review to determine the finalists on which our general membership voted in May. This year we increased the individual grant limit to $20,000 and will evaluate the impact that some larger grants can make.

Congratulations to the following grantees:

Anne Arundel County CASA, Inc.

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) - $20,000

CASA provides volunteers to advocate for and support abused and neglected children who are involved in juvenile court proceedings to ensure their right to permanent, safe, stable homes.

Anne Arundel County Community Action Agency

Green Summer Works- $10,000

This program provides low-income high school students with paid summer jobs and mentoring sessions that teach workplace skills, financial literacy, team problem-solving and goal-setting.

Arundel Lodge

Go GRRRLS: Empowerment & Resilience Program for Teenage Girls- $5,977.68

This is a new program for teen girls using the nationally known GO GRRRLS curriculum. It will provide empowerment and resilience training, plus positive peer support, with female therapists addressing social, emotional, and mental health needs.

Creating Communities

Arts Education for Elementary & Middle School Students- $5,001.31

Creating Communities runs after-school programs that use the power of music, art, and movement to reach low-income students who need more than conventional modalities of learning. They bring arts education to youth where they live.

He Opens Paths to Everyone (HOPE for All)

Transitioning Homeless Women & Children into Healthy Homes - $20,000

HOPE for All provides necessities to homeless women and children who don’t have the resources to furnish a home as they transition from a shelter into permanent housing and reintegrate into our communities.

Planned Parenthood of Maryland

Women's Cancer Prevention Program Services- $20,000

This grant will help reduce the incidence of breast and cervical cancer among low-income women in Anne Arundel County by providing breast health and wellness exams, Pap tests, pregnancy tests, STD tests, treatment and vaccines.


Start the Adventure in Reading- $10,750

STAIR’s goal is to increase the reading level and sense of self-esteem and self-confidence in second graders through early intervention tutoring in reading. Participants are primarily low-income, minority students and all the tutors are volunteers.


Crisis Intervention & Case Management for Victims of Crime- $20,000

This award provides case management and crisis intervention services to women and children residing at the Y’s Domestic Violence Shelter. This includes hospital accompaniment for rape victims, goal setting and connection to therapy, housing and employment opportunities.

Fostering Hope: Perseverance in the Face of Adversity

Learning more about foster care and how children react&mcash;and grow to adulthood–in the system is the focus of AAWGT’s June 21 education program. Our speaker is Regina Calcaterra, author of the New York Times best-selling memoir, Etched in Sand. She and her siblings survived an abusive childhood, the foster-care system, and intermittent homelessness. Now a practicing attorney in New York, Regina is a powerful speaker who uses her own experiences to emphasize the power of resilience and optimism and the importance of education in overcoming obstacles. One reviewer noted that she “compassionately reinforces that no child is a lost cause” and that “simple acts of encouragement and kindness can forever impact the life of a child in need.”

Please invite your friends to join us and hear this exceptional speaker Wednesday, June 21 at 6 p.m.  

Foster Care to Permanent Home—CASAs Pave the Way

For many abused or neglected children, a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) volunteer is the only constant adult presence in their lives. Nobody longs for a safe, loving family more than a child in care. Historically, children with a CASA volunteer are far less likely to be bounced from one place to another or get stuck in long-term foster care.

Anne Arundel County CASA (AACCASA) helps ensure that children who have been identified as needing care by the Circuit Court find a path to safe, stable, permanent homes.

When the state steps in to protect a child, a judge appoints a CASA to provide factual, objective information and make independent recommendations that assist the court in making decisions that are in the child’s best interest. CASA volunteers are committed to their child until they are placed in loving permanent homes.

AACCASA has helped many children over the years. For example, Charlie went into foster care at the age of 14 after being neglected by his mother and being beaten by his mother’s boyfriend. He was shuttled from one foster home to another. Finally two years later, with the help of Charlie’s CASA, he was placed in a pre-adoptive foster home. He was adopted by his foster family when he was 17 1/2 years old. The AAWGT grant to AACCASA is used to partially fund the salaries of a training coordinator/case supervisor and a case supervisor. These staff members coordinate the volunteer training program and supervise CASA volunteers. Because of this funding, these staff members can work with more volunteers, thus allowing AACCASA to serve more children. Currently, 83 CASA volunteers are appointed to 100 children.

Find out about becoming a CASA here.

Leadership Letter

On behalf of AAWGT members, we’d like to congratulate the recipients of this year’s grant awards. These 8 non-profits were selected by a vote of the membership after a rigorous and thoughtful process that involved the active participation of approximately 30 members of the giving circle. Through your generosity, AAWGT was able to invest the largest amount in our history—more than $110,000—in the Anne Arundel County community. Above is a short description of the projects funded. Additional information is available on this website.

The annual Grants Showcase on September 19 will give everyone an opportunity to talk with representatives from these outstanding organizations and hear from last year’s grantees about the impact our grants had on the work they do. We hope you’ll plan to be there.

On June 24, the Steering Committee, made up of AAWGT officers as well as chairs and co-chairs of committees, will gather for a retreat to take stock of where we are and plan for the rest of this year and next.  If you have ideas about the grants process, the education programs, or ways you think we can be more effective in reaching out and involving members in the work of the organization and in philanthropy generally, please send us a note at giving@givingtogether.org. We’ll report on our deliberations and share our thoughts for continuing to build on the amazing work of our first ten years.

Linda Eggbeer, President
Betsy Chotin, Vice-President and President-Elect

 Full Circle News is published bi-monthly. Feedback or questions? Email marketing@givingtogether.org

Anne Arundel Women Giving Together
AAWGT is a fund of the Community Foundation of Anne Arundel County

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