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The Community Foundation of Lorain County is dedicated to enriching the lives of those living and working in Lorain County, Ohio.

Community Foundation grant gives support for vulnerable children.


Community Foundation grant gives support for vulnerable children.


            Elyria, OH, August 3, 2018

Guardians ad Litem (GALs) serve as independent voices for abused and neglected children, and Lorain County needs more of them.  According to the County, 85% of the children who are appointed a GAL before the Lorain County Domestic Relations Court are younger than 12.  Many of the children they represent have been separated from parents who are suffering from the disease of alcohol or drug addictions.  As the effects of the opioid epidemic continue to strain the court, healthcare, and social service systems, children displaced by the disease of addiction are increasingly living with a family member or grandparent, or are placed into foster care, if no relatives are able to take them.  

The Domestic Relations Court appoints a GAL through Voices for Children, a nonprofit in Lorain County that recruits, trains, and supports volunteers to serve as Guardians Ad Litem (GALs).  Court-appointed attorneys and social workers typically have high-volume caseloads making it difficult to give each child’s case the attention it calls for.  The GAL works independently as the child's voice in court, focusing solely on protecting the best interest of the child.  

A $9,000 grant announced by the Community Foundation of Lorain County is supporting the work of Voices for Children, as part of its recent distribution of $860,646 to Lorain County nonprofits.  The grant supports volunteer training and marketing for volunteer recruitment.  Since 2002, the Community Foundation has awarded over $100,000 to Voices for Children. 

“The grants from the Community Foundation of Lorain County have been a true blessing to our program and has given us the ability to ensure we are doing our very best to advocate for the children; recruit, train and further educate the volunteers in order to reach out to the children and speak up for their best interests,” said Timothy W. Green, Program Director of Voices for Children - Lorain County CASA Program.

Volunteer recruitment is critical, and Voices for Children needs volunteers to ensure that each child has an advocate.  According to its 2017 annual report, 135 Voices for Children volunteers worked over 7,500 hours and advocated for 413 children in court, compared to 150 volunteers serving 415 children in 2016. 

Those interested in becoming a volunteer can contact their main office on the second floor of the Lorain County Justice Center, 225 Court St. in Elyria, at 440-329-5158, or visit their website at www.vfclc.org.  Volunteers who are male and/or people of color are especially encouraged to apply to become a GAL.

The Community Foundation also announced its distribution of $860,646 grants to nonprofits serving Lorain County.  The complete list of grants follows.

The Community Foundation of Lorain County is a public foundation established in 1980 with income from endowment funds contributed by individuals, families, businesses, and nonprofit organizations.  The Community Foundation is an open and inclusive anchor institution that works to improve the quality of life for those living and working in Lorain County, Ohio.  It responds to the changing needs of the community by making grants to local nonprofit organizations and giving scholarships to help local students.  In 2017, the Community Foundation received over $5.8 million in gifts, distributed over $6 million in grants and scholarships, and ended the year with assets of $138 million.

2018 08 CommunityFoundationGrants
Arts, Culture & Humanities ‑ $129,341

Center for Arts‑Inspired Learning
        Digital Storytelling Residencies at Elyria Middle Schools ‑ $17,036

Cleveland Museum of Natural History
        Transforming Science and Health Education in Lorain County Schools ‑ $14,555

        Music Outreach and Service ‑ $4,000

Great Lakes Theater Festival
        2018‑19 Great Lakes Theater Education Programs for Lorain County Students ‑ $35,000

Lorain Historical Society
        Community Conversations:  Capturing Stories of The International City ‑ $10,000

Lorain Palace Civic Center
        Roof repairs and Youth Theater program 2019 ‑ $25,000

The MAD Factory
        Theatre Arts Based Programming ‑ $5,000

Northern Ohio Youth Orchestras
        2018‑2019 NOYO Season ‑ $15,000

Spark Theatre Company
        General Operating Support ‑ $3,750

Education ‑ $44,800

Atmosphere Adventures
        Atmosphere Adventures Science Enrichment Project ‑ $15,000

College Now Greater Cleveland, Inc.
        College Access Advising for Lorain County ‑ $20,000

Educational Service Center of Lorain County
        Young Authors & Spelling Bee Programs 2018‑2019 ‑ $9,800

Environment ‑ $24,110

Conservancy for Cuyahoga Valley National Park
        Lorain & Elyria Schools Participation at Cuyahoga Valley Environmental Education Center ‑ $14,110

Western Reserve Land Conservancy
        Land Conservation activities in Lorain County ‑ $10,000

Health Care ‑ $118,995

Cleveland Hearing & Speech Center
        Community Center for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing ‑ $15,000

Easter Seals Northern Ohio
        Council on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) accreditation ‑ $3,995

Family Planning Services of Lorain County
        Operating Support ‑ $50,000

Lorain County Free Clinic
        General Operating Support ‑ $50,000

Mental Health & Crisis Intervention ‑ $65,000

Lorain County Safe Harbor Genesis House
        Aftercare Program ‑ $50,000

Let's Get Real Inc.
        Independent Peer Support Services ‑ $15,000

Food, Agriculture & Nutrition ‑ $52,000

Lorain Co Lutheran Presbyterian Cooperative Ministries
        Food Distribution and Community Assistance through Food Pantries, Hot Meals and Community Programs ‑ $10,000

Second Harvest Food Bank of North Central Ohio
        Increasing Food Resources for Lorain County and Child Hunger Summit ‑ $42,000

Youth Development ‑ $113,000

Achievement thru Community Education and Support
        Youth programs ‑ $25,000

Boys & Girls Clubs of Lorain County
        School Year Teen Out‑of‑School Time Enrichment ‑ $30,000

Camp !magine
        Camp Counselors/Camp Nurse 2019 ‑ $12,000

Great Expectations Ministries
        Great Expectation Music Project ‑ $6,000

Junior Achievement of Greater Cleveland
        Programs for Lorain County students ‑ $15,000

Ohio State University Foundation
        4‑H Positive Youth Development (Preparing Youth for Success) ‑ $25,000

Human Services ‑ $259,400

Achievement Centers for Children
        Day and Overnight Camp Opportunities for Children and Adults with Disabilities ‑ $7,500

American Red Cross, Lake Erie / Heartland Chapter
        Supporting Disaster Services in Lorain County ‑ $10,000

Catholic Charities Corporation
        St. Elizabeth Center and Teen Parent Mentoring Program ‑ $80,000

Legal Aid Society of Cleveland
        Basic Needs through Legal Aid ‑ $30,000

Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry
        Volunteer Guardianship Program of Lorain County ‑ $23,000

Neighborhood Alliance
        Haven Center Shelter and Senior Nutrition ‑ $60,000

Oberlin Community Services Council
        General Operating Support and Emergency Assistance ‑ $30,000

Voices for Children
        General Operating Support ‑ $9,000

YWCA of Elyria
        Active Elders Project ‑ $9,900

Community Improvement & Capacity Building ‑ $50,000

Lorain County Urban League
        General Operations and UYEP ‑ $40,000

Main Street Wellington
        Operating Budget ‑ $10,000

Philanthropy, Voluntarism & Grantmaking Foundation ‑ $4,000

Foundation Center Cleveland
               Grant writing and fund development training for Lorain County nonprofits ‑ $4,000

We believe the perpetuity of our efforts are linked to sustainable practices.

We value community, which we define as putting self aside for the betterment of the whole.

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Through our efforts, the Foundation seeks to improve the quality of life and to instill a greater sense of unity in Lorain County.