Bradenton Kiwanis surpass $6M in giving with latest bequests


BRADENTON -- The Bradenton Kiwanis expanded upon their 92-year history of charitable contributions Tuesday.

The Bradenton Kiwanis Club has invested more than $6 million in charitable giving in just the past 17 years.

All Kiwanis investments must have lasting impact on the local community and make a difference to individuals who live, work and play in our town.

Bradenton Kiwanis will invest $378,500 this year through programs, projects and direct contributions to local agencies. Projects include:

• Manatee Performing Arts Center $50,000;

• Scholarship Committee awards made to Take Stock in Children as well as individual awards each year, $50,000;

• Christmas In August, $35,000;

• Youth Leadership pro

grams such as CKI at State College of Florida, Key Club at Manatee High School, Builder's Club at King, Sugg, and St. Joseph's Middle Schools, and K Kids at Miller, Palma Sola, and Stewart Elementary Schools, $27,000;

• community service such as Better Manatee Day, Veteran's Day Events, Kid's Against Hunger, $25,000;

• Presidents Project, $20,000;

• agriculture, including Farm City Week programs and events such as Leadership Manatee Agriculture Day, Farm City Week Luncheon, Agriculturalist of the Year Award, Agriculture Hall of Fame at the Manatee County Agricultural Museum Leadership and Citizenship Awards for youth in 4-H and 10 FFA chapters, $17,000;

• Bringing up Grades, which recognizes improving students, $11,000;

• Christmas in August, a program focusing on school preparedness for Homeless Children, $11,000;

Kiwanis International Foundation and the Florida District of Kiwanis Foundation, $7,500;

• Young Children Priority One emphasizes infants and children pre natal to age 5. "Every Child a Reader" is the signature project of this committee. Last year 117 volunteers read to 1,615 children in 112 classrooms at 32 centers and every child and every classroom received the book, $6,000;

• Reserve, $3,500;

• human and spiritual values projects such as the observance of the National Day of Prayer, $5,000;

New Members Project, $3,000; and

• youth services focus through the Big K Mentoring Program, which is a partnership with Big Brothers/ Big Sisters.

Community project grants include:

• Manatee Educational Television Consortium, $28,620 for video equipment;

• Manatee Historical Commission Inc., $18,000 matching grant to fund train-themed commercial play equipment in park;

• Art League of Manatee County, $18,000 matching grant to update its Artist Market;

• Replay Outreach Inc., $18,000 for youth development program;

• Manatee County Agricultural Museum Inc., $16,000 to expand Hall of Fame exhibits and refurbish museum;

• Foundation For Dreams, $15,000 for an accessible playground at Dream Oaks Camp; and

• Beach Dawgs, $2,500 to rebuild dugouts.

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