Vision impaired will benefit from Community Foundation grant
Children with vision problems in low-income families will benefit greatly from a sizable grant to the Prescott Valley Early Birds Lions from the Yavapai County Community Foundation.
YCCF board member Mike Fann presented club President Norm Pariseau with a $5,068 check at the Lions' regular weekly breakfast meeting on Sept. 17 at Casa Cardenas.
The Lions' pet project is providing eyeglasses and eye exams for those who can't otherwise afford them.
Lion Teri Boyd, with Rummel Eye Care, handles the applications.
"We bought eyeglasses and eyecare for 231 people last year," Boyd said.
"We turned away only six applicants," added Lion Steve Rutherford.
He noted that Boyd also helps people use their insurance for eyecare, to save club money for those truly in need.
"All club expenses are paid for by members, so 100 percent of the money we raise goes toward charitable programs," Rutherford said of such fundraisers as the annual sale of Christmas trees and the Harlem Ambassadors basketball game. "This year the emphasis is on children."
Boyd said she gets calls every week from school nurses in Prescott Valley about kids with broken glasses who desperately need but can't afford replacements. The club responds quickly.
An affiliate of the Arizona Community Foundation, the 501(c)(3) YCCF allocates money in 10 field of interest funds, including the Eyecare Fund, from a variety of donors.
"We don't have a single cause," said Fann. "As a support organization, we take endowed dollars, bequests left with the foundation, and focus on the needs of forever, rather than a single charity. Charitable needs could look much different 20 or 30 years from now."
Although some bequests are specific, such as a $300,000 one a woman left for law enforcement K9 programs, the community fund is unrestricted and can go to countywide nonprofit organizations.
YCCF also acts as facilitator for other funds, distributing grants for foundations so they don't have to do administrative duties, Fann said.
This year, YCCF received requests for $642,000. The public charity had $132,000 to distribute, Fann said, and it was "with pleasure" they awarded some of that to the Prescott Valley Early Bird Lions.
For more information on YCCF, visit www.yavapaifoundation.org, or call (928)499-9795.