Community Foundation to Distribute Over $82,700 for 27 Osceola County Improvement Projects

Osceola SignSibley, Iowa — Wednesday evening, February 20, 2013, the Community Foundation of Osceola County will distribute $ 82,781.67 to twenty-seven nonprofit groups representing five different areas of Osceola County. The purpose of these grants is to assist local groups to promote and support human services, the arts and culture, health and recreation, economic well being, youth development and the educational needs of Osceola County residents. Grants ranging from $1066.67 to $3,500 will be announced and distributed at a special ceremony to be held at 5:30 p.m., February 20, 2013 at the Sibley Senior Center. (612 8th Street–Sibley, Iowa) The public is invited and encouraged to attend.

The Community Foundation of Osceola County (CFOC) was established in the fall of 2005 as a way to encourage charitable giving that would benefit the entire Osceola County area. Grant monies were made possible by the Iowa General Assembly with the passage of H.F. 2032 which provided that non-gambling counties be eligible to receive one half of one percent of the state’s gross gambling receipts. This year, Osceola County’s share of these funds totaled just over $86,000. Under the terms of the legislation, 75 percent of these funds are to be awarded through grants to charitable organizations for educational, civic and public purposes. The remaining 25 percent must be placed into a permanent county endowment fund to be invested, with the earnings distributed over time.

The CFOC is organized by representatives from throughout Osceola County. Early this past fall, they began work on the grant awarding process. The main focus of the foundation is to assist nonprofit organizations to fill in the gaps where funding may be lacking. This partnership with communities and nonprofit organizations help make programs and projects possible that might otherwise go unfunded. Osceola County continues to be among the first of the Community Foundations across Iowa to award grants for worthy projects. Following Thursday evening’s presentation, over $500,000 will have been distributed improving the quality of life in our community over the past eight years.

One of the goals of the Iowa General Assembly in establishing these funds is to foster private giving, strengthen service providers and improve conditions in local communities. To these ends, they provided the seed money for the community foundations with hopes this would encourage others to contribute to their local foundations. Anyone interested in contributing to a permanent source of charitable funds for Osceola County community improvement projects is encouraged to contact any member of the CFOC or Kirk Grau of the Osceola County Economic Development Corporation at 712-754-2523.

The following projects have been funded for 2013:
1. $ 3500 Westerners 4-H Club (Construction of a viewing platform at Hawkeye Point)
2. $ 2465 Sibley Senior Center (Install an automatic door on west side of Senior Center)
3. $ 3500 Ashton Area Dev. Corp (Rehabilitate existing post office)
4. $ 3500 May City Fire Dept. (Pay to have old pumper refurbished into a tanker)
5. $ 1350 Bright Beginnings (Purchase equipment for physical act. & vacuum cleaner)
6. $ 3500 Sibley Ambulance (Purchase an Auto Pulse Cardiac Support Pump)
7. $ 3500 Osceola Co. Rec. Trails (Creating an 8 ft. wide concrete bike trail)
8. $ 3500 Ashton Am. Legion Post (Replace Commercial Air Conditioner)
9. $ 3500 S-O FFA Chapter (Build bathroom/shower at Hawkeye Point Campground)
10. $ 3500 Ocheyedan Sr. Activity Center (Upgrade lighting in facility)
11. $ 3500 Melvin Area Econ Dev. Corp. (Have mural painted on old grocery store)
12. $ 1500 Sibley Chamber of Commerce (Purchase pedestals to display local artwork downtown)
13. $ 3500 Osceola Co. Sheriff (Purchase new canine to replace current one)
14. $ 3500 Osceola Co. Cons. Bd. (Construction of observation deck at Willow Creek)
15. $ 3500 S-O Early Childhood Dev. (Musical experimenting & exploring area on playground)
16. $ 3500 Ashton Betterment Comm. (Seating near playground equip./trash receptacles)
17. $ 3500 McCallum Museum (Scrape, prime & paint museum/caulk & renail siding)
18. $ 3500 Osceola Co. Youth Adv. Comm. (Host series of youth STEM camps & workshops)
19. $ 3500 Osceola Co. Ext. (Hire person to work with groups submitting events to comm. calander)
20. $ 3500 S-O Band Boosters (Purchase string instruments for high school band)
21. $ 3500 Ashton Fire Dept. (Purchase a reach & rescue pole for water, ice & mud)
22. $ 3500 Ashton Comm. Emergency Serv. (Purchase power cot)
23. $ 3500 Ashton Ave. of Flags (Flagpole sockets around city park/5 poles & flags)
24. $ 3500 Sibley Golf Course (Update kitchen)
25. $ 3500 Sibley Prairie View Corridor (Install underground wiring at signs for lighting displays)
26. $ 3500 Pheasants Forever (Purchase VICON broadcast seeder/culti-packer & side rake)
27. $ 1066.67 Osceola Comm. Health Services (Purchase generator to power portable LED sign)

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