Manhasset Community Fund presents 12 local groups with grants

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Constance Knies (left) and Diane Harragan of the Manhasset Student Aid Association, which provides scholarships to college students from Manhasset. They accepted a grant from the Manhasset Community Fund on Thursday. (Photo by Teri West)

The Manhasset Community Fund awarded 12 local organizations that support Manhasset residents with grants last week, an annual effort since its inception in 1946.

Representatives of the organizations gathered at the Greentree Foundation estate in Manhasset Thursday to celebrate and discuss their causes, which range from literacy programming to battling breast cancer.

Gina Kang of the Shelter Rock Food Pantry, which is based out of Shelter Rock Church in Plandome Heights, accepts a grant from Manhasset Community Fund Co-President Linda Clarke. (Photo by Teri West)

Fifteen organizations applied for funding this year and 12 were given grants starting at $2,000 and extending to $10,000, Manhasset Community Fund co-President John Morse said. 

The following were selected as recipients: Adventures in Learning, Child Abuse Prevention Services, Coalition Against Substance Abuse, Literacy Nassau, Manhasset Student Aid Association, Manhasset Women’s Coalition Against Breast Cancer, Manhasset-Great Neck Economic Opportunity Council, Nicholas Center, North Shore Child and Family Guidance, The Safe Center, Science Museum of Long Island and Shelter Rock Food Pantry. 

“It’s funds like this that allow us to advance the scope of more than just helping individuals in Manhasset,” said Stella Spanakos, co-founder of the Port Washington based Nicholas Center, which offers programs for children, teens and adults with autism.

The Manhasset Community Fund was founded in 1946 and was able to raise $37,000 in its first year, said co-Vice President Iliza Bartels.

Karen Micciche, executive director of Literacy Nassau. (Photo by Teri West)

“If you think about post World War II, what that 37 means, that’s a lot of money,” she said.

This year it raised about $70,000 from three rounds of letter campaigns to residents as well as proceeds from Americana Manhasset’s holiday giving event Champions for Charity and a Vineyard Vines charity shopping event.

The community fund board selected award recipients based on need, Bartels said. The recipients determine how they will use the money.

“Some nonprofits have very good development systems,” Bartels said. “They can raise money easily. Some cannot. That’s one of the blessings of us is we know who needs us more and they will often receive more.”

The Manhasset Community Fund also distributes grants provided every year by the Greentree Foundation, which benefit organizations throughout the Town of North Hempstead.

Roslyn-based Child Abuse Prevention Services, a return recipient of a Manhasset Community Fund grant, brings free workshops to Long Island classrooms. Its programs teach students about issues including bullying prevention, child abuse prevention, internet safety, sexual harassment prevention and date rape prevention.

An afternoon gathering at the Greentree estate celebrated the grant recipients. (Photo by Teri West)

The new grant will help Child Abuse Prevention Service sustain its programming, said Executive Director Debbie Mullarkey.

“We’re very grateful for the support of the Manhasset Community Fund,” Mullarkey said. “It will help us further our mission of keeping children safe from harm.”

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