By BRETT R. BOGGS
Superintendent, Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation
The Valley Community Foundation was formed in the fall of 2012 to re-engage Tippecanoe Valley High School Alumni with their schools and hometowns and to support education and community development within the communities served by the Tippecanoe Valley School Corporation.
The Tippecanoe Valley community is typical of the majority of communities in Indiana and the Midwest. They still have many of the same charms, virtues, and assets, but are not growing. Declining populations and tax bases make it increasingly difficult for small towns to provide young people the same opportunities experienced 40, 30, 20, or even 10 years ago.
The Valley Alumni Fund was created as a non-permanent fund under the umbrella of the Fulton County Community Foundation. During its first year of existence, the Valley Community Foundation raised $2,500 in tax-deductible contributions from Valley alumni, many of whom no longer live in the community, to be granted to community or school related organizations in need of funding.
The Valley Community Foundation conducted its inaugural “Community Grantmaking Event” in May 2013 when each of five community organizations took home presentation checks totaling $2,500. Forty-one Valley graduates who responded to an invitation to attend listened to presentations from the five charitable causes, then decided in small groups around five tables how to distribute the funds.
The recipients were the Boomerang Backpack program, represented by TVHS Principal Kirk Doehrmann, $350; the Akron Youth League, represented by Lisa (Harger) Fear, $440; the Little Free Libraries project, represented by Kristen (Saner) Horrell, $450; the Helping Hands food bank, represented by Jerry Secrist, $550; and the Pioneer Day/Prill School program, pairing TVHS history classes with Akron and Mentone fourth graders, $710.
As determined by the Valley Community Foundation’s Advisory Board, the goal is to raise $10,000 by the spring of 2015, which coincides with the 40th anniversary of the first class to graduate from TVHS. Each tax-deductible contribution will be pooled with the contributions of other TVHS alumni to annually grant monies to community or school related organizations.
The Valley Community Foundation will direct 50 percent of the annual contributions to grants and invest the remaining 50 percent in an endowment at the Fulton County Community Foundation that will grow and benefit our community and students forever.
Patrons are encouraged to consider making a tax-deductible gift to the Valley Community Foundation. To make a contribution via credit card go to www.nicf.org and click on the link titled “Make a Donation.” In the comment box, note Valley Alumni Fund.
If paying by check, please accompany your payment with your name, address, and contact information and mail it to NICF, P.O. Box 807, Rochester. Be sure to note Valley Alumni Fund on the check.
Questions may be directed to TVSC Superintendent Brett Boggs at (574) 353-7741, ext. 1006 or [email protected]