Danville Museum of Fine Arts and History
“History on the Lawn” is a popular event each April when Civil War re-enactors campout on the Danville Museum’s Sutherlin Mansion grounds. On Friday, schools bus students to the event to see demonstrations of soldier and camp life, equipments, and medical techniques during the War. “A special thanks for the financial support with busing.” writes Bonner School teachers, “That helped us tremendously with our plans!”
The program relates to Virginia Standards of Learning. “It was really amazing to witness Civil War history through reenactments by real people. It really made my history book come alive. Because of ‘camp life’….I learned many new things about the late 1860s,” a student named Taylor related in her thank you note. Leonard writes, “I like how the people that were presenting at the museum actually made me feel like I was at a time during the Civil War because of how they dressed.”
The re-enactors sleep around a campfire overnight and wake up Saturday to continue their demonstrations for the general public. With Community Foundation funding, the Danville Museum offers this free of charge and admission to the Museum is free that day. Many schools are unable to afford busing which the Community Foundation grant wholly funded to enable this one-on-one engagement with history.
Danville Science Center
The Danville Science Center received $20,000 from the Danville Regional Foundation Fund at The Community Foundation in January of 2015 to support the leasing and installation of two traveling exhibits. The first exhibit, Identity, was well received by the community and served as a positive backdrop for a special celebration of youth photography. A total of 5,138 visitors experienced the Identity exhibit in a 3-month display period.In addition to the regular visitation, Identity was in place during a special event to celebrate youth who had completed the first WellWorks Visual Arts photography program. The exhibit’s messages about knowing and respecting yourself and others resonated nicely with the overall tone of the evening. The young photographers, their family members, and community leaders all expressed positive reactions the exhibition. The second exhibit, How People Make Things, will run through the Fall of 2015.
Alzheimers Association CWVA
Alzheimers Association CWVA received $9,500 in January of 2014 from the John C. Swanson, Jr. Fund and the Faith Home Endowment Fund at The Community Foundation. This grant supported the Arts Fusion Program. Arts Fusion impacted the lives of all involved. The words of a facility member convey the importance of the program for persons with dementia, caregivers, and Arts Fusion staff: “I think that the Arts Fusion Specialist’s heart was personally touched by our residents on a level that totally surprised her. She was amazed at the amount of participation that occurred simply through evoking their memories. . .of years past.”
Pittsylvania Caswell Youth Livestock Association
In January of 2010, the Pittsylvania Caswell Youth Livestock Association (PCYLA) was awarded $4,000 from the Clarence L. Giles Fund at The Community Foundation. This grant allowed PCYLA to expand its Junior Livestock Show and Sale to accommodate more participants by providing funds to build more animal pens and to rent a large tent to house goat exhibitions.
This association was formed in the late 1990’s as a non-profit organization whose sole purpose is to plan, prepare and host the Pittsylvania Caswell Junior Livestock Show and Sale each year. Their mission is to educate young people about raising, caring for and marketing their livestock. These young exhibitors learn leadership, responsibility, teamwork, record-keeping and financial management. Past exhibitors have gone on to become successful lawyers, doctors, teachers, nurses and various other occupations. This show and sale has grown from a handful of participants to more than 100 youth exhibitors showing more than 130 animals. This event is not only beneficial to youth but also to the public, as it facilitates agricultural awareness within the community.
Caswell County Cooperative Extension Service
In January of 2011, the Community Foundation awarded $3,600 to the Caswell County Cooperative Extension Service (Caswell County 4-H YES Programs) from the Claudia Vernon Smith Fund and the John C. Swanson, Jr. Fund. This grant allowed ten young people to attend the NC Teen Court Summit, a statewide competition, and provided training opportunities for Juvenile Justice and Prevention Coordinators. Juveniles referred to the local program are first-time offenders who have admitted to their guilt. The court is made up of young people between the ages of 12 and 18 who serve as defense and prosecuting attorneys, clerks of court, bailiffs and the jury. This year’s summit was a success—several awards were brought back to Caswell County including Best Court Room Reporter, Best Defense Attorney and Best Clerk of Court. We have had team members go on to Wake Forest School of Law, Florida A&M and Winston Salem State. This program has given these young people a second chance to turn their lives around.