$55,000 grant split between six local nonprofits

By BETH BUNCH,

Six local nonprofits will benefit from $55,000 in funds awarded through the Pinebelt Foundation’s Ann Morris Memorial Fund. 

The grant funding will be used to enrich the quality of life to persons of advanced age, who are diagnosed as intellectually challenged.  

Receiving grants are:

• Abbie Rogers Civitan Camp - $3,875

• Arc of the Pine Belt Region $12,750

• Arc of Southeast Mississippi - $20,000

• Hattiesburg Arts Council - $5,000

• William Carey University (Quality of Life Program)- $8,875

• William Carey University (Harnessing Adults Full Potential Through Music Therapy Program)- $5000

Funding for such worthwhile nonprofits is provided by the John E. Morris Testamentary Trust. Morris established a trust tund for his daughter, Ann Morris, who was intellectually disabled. The trust was set up to take care of Ann during her lifetime; in 2007 Ann passed away.  Morris left instructions, that after he and Ann passed away, he wanted funds to go to organizations that enrich the lives of adults with intellectual disabilities. 

Trustmark National Bank serves as trustee for the funds and partners with the PineBelt Community Foundation for the disbursement of those funds as instructed by Morris.

The Abbie Rogers Civitan Camp received a grant of $3,875 to increase recreation opportunities and providing these games as they transition to their home.  The second part of the grant will purchase portable modifications for the grounds at camp Iti Kana and Elks Camp to accommodate wheelchair access.

The Arc of the Pine Belt Region received a grant of $12,750 to improve and continue social and recreational activities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities through the ArcTivities program. This may include events such as movie nights, game nights, dance parties, sporting events, and holiday parties.

The Arc of Southeast MS received $20,000 for their Rise and Shine program and Sunsetters NOT Sunsitters program.  Rise and Shine will use their $10,000 grant to provide adults with disabilities an opportunity to excel in community recreational activities. Sunsetters NOT Sunsitters program will use their $10,000 grant to offer recreational programming to adults with disabilities.

The Hattiesburg Arts Council received $5,000 for their smART Space ARC Rise and Shine program to engage intellectually and developmentally disabled adults with interactive movement, role playing, music and art activities, and to encourage self-expression and creativity.

William Carey University’s “Quality of Life” program and “Harnessing Adults Full Potential Through Music Therapy” program received $13,875.  The “Quality of Life” program will use their $8,875 grant to facilitate interaction in social settings between University Students and older persons with intellectual disabilities including lunches, day trips and movies. 

In addition, Williams Carey University’s “Harnessing Adults Full Potential Through Music Therapy” program will use their $5,000 grant to offer services to adults with intellectual disabilities to increase acquisition of skill building and activities for daily living.

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