Borrego Sun - Since 1949

BVEF Announces Local Grants


Last updated 4/3/2020 at 12:33pm

Michael Sadler

The Borrego Valley Endowment Fund, announced $50,000 in cash awards to local organizations and people doing good work in our community at luncheon held on the patio at The Palms at Indian Head on March 6.

The BVEF, a private, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization operating in the Borrego Valley, capitalized at $8 million in legacy funds, provides the awards on an annual basis.

BVEF Board Chairman/President Bob Kelly welcomed the crowd, summarized the role of the organization in the community, and turned the mic over to Project Allocation Chair Lorry Seagrim and Secretary Caroline Manildi to announce the award winners.

First up, for outreach to the Latino community to honor Cesar Chavez history, Ursula Esser, Development Director of the Anza-Borrego Foundation received $1,000.

Joann Stang from the BASIC program accepted a $5,000 award to go towards junior college scholarships.

Wade Bean, Art Farm Manager, received $3,500 for his creation of an organic aquaponics growing facility at the Borrego Art Institute Art Farm.

For the efforts of the Borrego Civic Foundation in their support the Annual Borrego Historic Preservation Day, plus educational and cultural efforts in the community, Jim Dice, Reserve Manager at the Steele/Burnand Anza-Borrego Desert Research Center accepted an $1,875 award.

Richard Gray from the Borego Springs Community Concert Series that provides for community concerts and exposes children to world class musicians, accepted a check for $6,000. The BSCCS spends $40-45,000 per year to put on concerts. Public support provides 60% of the funds.

Martha Deichler, Borrego Springs Unified School District School-Community Liaison accepted a $5,000 award on behalf of the District going towards the Catalina trip for eighth grade students.

The Borrego Village Association received a $10,000 award, accepted by Dale Jones for absent BVA Executive Director Jim Dion, for its work on sustainability and workforce development, plus their efforts to increase communication and public speaking of senior students that assist in job opportunities.

Joe Woods accepted the $5,000 award on behalf of Doug Johnson, who works on the Cal Invasive Plant Council to map and remove volutaria from our community to protect wildflowers.

Judy Stewart of the Soroptimists received $3,625 for their work to empower women to re-enter college so they may "live their dream.

Reverend Laura Brecht accepted a $10,000 award to the Minister's Association's Martha Deichler for the organization's support of the community's spiritual and physical needs to become self-sufficient.

And finally, Diane Johnson accepted a $3,600 award on behalf of the St. Barnabas Emergency Food Assistance Program that provides free food and social services to people in need.

After the awards ceremony, BVEF Vice President Bruce Kelley provided updates on the proposed urgent care center (they are searching for a provider) and the elimination of helicopter service by Reach Medical (Mercy Air is now the sole provider).

David Garmon spoke to the issue of air quality, and then specifically to a proposal to build low income housing for seniors adjacent to the Library on property donated by the Wright family.

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