NORTH ADAMS - The Robert and James Hardman Fund, an endowment of Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation, announced that it has awarded grants totaling $35,100 to nonprofit organizations serving North Adams, Clarksburg, Florida and Stamford.
The Hardman Fund for North Adams was established in 2000 by members of the Hardman family in honor of James A. Hardman, Jr. (1909-1990) and Robert Hardman (1911-1978). James and Robert were descendents of the earliest settlers of the area that eventually came to be known as North Adams, and for over 100 years the Hardman family owned and published the North Adams Transcript. The fund supports projects that cover all aspects of these communities, including the arts, culture, historic preservation, health, human and social services, education and the environment.
The fund awarded grants to: Berkshire County Kids' Place - $2,000 to conduct violence prevention outreach and education to all residents of northern Berkshire County.
Berkshire Food Project - $4,400 to provide free noon-time meals to any one in need every day, Monday through Friday.
Berkshire Nursing Families - $2,000 to support lactation services to families in North Adams, Clarksburg, Florida and Stamford.
Community Access to the Arts - $1,000 to offer 10 acting workshops at the Adult Day Health Center in North Adams culminating with an informal performance opportunity hosted by Mass MoCA.
Community Legal Aid - $2,000 to support The North County Income Maximization Project, which will increase the number of poor families and individuals in North County who can access the full range of government benefits that they are eligible for.
Elder Services of Berkshire County - $4,800 to provide over 35,000 hot, nutritious meals for seniors.
Goodwill Industries of the Berkshires - $1,000 to support thee Northern Berkshire County Suit YourSelf Program, which will enable unemployed job seekers, of all ages, in Northern Berkshire County to receive individual attention and assistance in achieving the right clothing for a "first impression" when interviewing for jobs.
Hoosic River Revival Coalition - $1,000 to raise awareness of the Hoosic River and maintain two river-side Community Gardens.
Mill City Productions - $500 to support a series of theatrical productions in northern Berkshire County.
North Adams Ambulance Service - $1,000 to provide immediate critical life-saving information to responding EMS Agencies. Specifically, for medical identification cards called "File of Life" cards.
North Adams Historical Society - $500 to support third grader visits to the North Adams Museum of History and Science.
Northern Berkshire Community Coalition - $2,000 to support the UNITY Youth Leadership Program, which is guided by a science-based youth development curriculum with proven outcomes in dropout and teen pregnancy prevention and reducing school failure.
Northern Berkshire Interfaith Action Initiative - $4,800 to grow Friendship Center Food Pantry's capacity to serve the community with enough nutritious food for all who need it.
Northern Berkshire YMCA - $1,500 to support the Summer Campership Program, which supports families whose children wish to attend one of their 25 different summer camp experiences but cannot afford the tuition.
Shakespeare & Company - $1,500 for Shakespeare in the Courts, a program to help at-risk youth develop positive communication and cooperation skills.
St. Vincent DePaul - $2,300 to support No Household Left Behind, an initiative to make sure that those most needy in the community do not have to go without heat, hot water or electricity for any reason.
Take and Eat Inc. - $2,800 to provide free weekend meals and wellness checks for home-bound seniors.
The next deadline for Hardman Fund grant proposals is March 1, 2014. Applications are available online atwww.berkshiretaconic.org/grantseekers.
The James and Robert Hardman Fund is one of 11 permanently endowed Area Funds established at BTCF to enhance life in a specific geographic region.