2014 Grant Awards



The Association for Vision Rehabilitation and Employment (AVRE) is the only organization in the Southern Tier that provides specialized employment for people who are blind or visually impaired. At its Binghamton facility, employees make file folders and copy paper and perform packaging and assembly. With help from a $150,000 grant from the Hoyt Foundation, AVRE will replace a 50-year old sheet cutter with a modern Digicut Sheeter. The new equipment will help AVRE operate more efficiently and safely. The Digicut Sheeter will also helps AVRE to increase its business and employ more people, and it will give workers the chance to acquire up-to-date manufacturing skills..



A volunteer organization, Binghamton AMBUCS helps people with disabilities to acquire custom-adapted AmTrykes. An AmTryke is a therapeutic tricycle that offers mobility and independence to people who cannot operate regular bicycles. The Hoyt Foundation has granted Binghamton AMBUCS a total of $30,000 to help it introduce the Trykes to local families. The money allows Binghamton AMBUCS to: buy 13 different models of AmTryke for demonstration and training; buy a trailer to store and transport the Trykes; train professionals in the area on how to use AmTrykes and fit them properly for individuals; and offer subsidies to families that can’t afford the full cost of a Tryke.



Community college foundations face special challenges in their efforts to raise money for student financial. Current students who commute to school, and alumni who go on to four-year colleges that ultimately claim their loyalties, can be difficult targets for fundraising campaigns. Nevertheless, the BCC Foundation conducts a successful giving program each year and administers several significant donor funds, all of which help students pursue higher education and career training. In 2014, the Hoyt Foundation provided $25,000 toward the BCC Foundation’s Grants-in-Aid program.



Since 2013, the Broome County Arts Council (BCAC) has been working toward a series of goals designed to make it a stronger and more effective organization, better able to raise funds to support Broome County’s signature arts organizations. Some of those goals are to: develop the BCAC Board’s fundraising skills; raise the profile of BCAC and its United Cultural Fund (UCF) through better branding and marketing; and join in collaborations and partnerships that make the community more familiar with BCAC and highlight the impact the UCF makes on the arts organizations that residents enjoy. In 2014, the Hoyt Foundation made a $100,000 program grant to BCAC’s 2015 UCF campaign.



The Water Sentinels is a stream water monitoring program affiliated with the Sierra Club. Broome County Water Sentinels work with local volunteer citizen groups, university labs, and other water testing programs to recruit, train, support and coordinate ongoing monitoring. In 2014, the Hoyt Foundation provided $4,100 toward water sample lab testing and volunteer education programs.



The Deposit Community Theatre & Performing Arts Center serves the people of Deposit in several ways, offering live entertainment, opportunities to take part in productions and a local outlet for first-run movies. Using a $13,000 grant from the Hoyt Foundation, staff will upgrade the audio equipment at the Theatre from analog to digital technology, allowing the audience to enjoy high definition audio. The grant also allows the Theatre to buy materials to a build a storage area. This will permit staff to keep theatrical props at the facility for easy access, rather than off site



Empire State College (ESC), part of the State University of New York (SUNY), provides an alternative route to a college degree for adult students. In 2013, the college’s Binghamton site served 115 students, many of whom juggle family, job and community responsibilities while pursuing higher education. Nearly 80 percent of ESC’s students from Broome County qualify for financial aid. A recent SUNY tuition increase makes it even harder for many students to afford a degree. In 2014, the Hoyt Foundation granted ESC $30,000 for scholarships to Broome County students over five years. In a typical year, this money will support four grants of $1,500 each.



Since 2002, the Goodwill Theatre Inc. (GWT) has been working to develop a major arts complex in Johnson City. The initiative focuses on three historic buildings, with the restored Goodwill Theatre as its centerpiece. One part of the project calls for developing the 1899 Firehouse Building to house four performance spaces, classrooms, dressing rooms and other facilities. In 2012, GWT received a $325,000 grant from the Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council to support architectural plans for Phase One of this project. Hoyt has provided $110,000 in matching funds for that grant. An additional $15,000 from Hoyt will go toward a mini-business plan to govern these Phase One activities.



The Kopernik Observatory & Science Center (KOSC) has offered programs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (the STEM subjects) for young people for 40 years. Hosting field trips and offering in-school programs, KOSC has forged productive relationships with many teachers in our area. Now, with help from a $16,350 program grant from the Hoyt Foundation, KOSC will launch a new initiative, a continuing education and professional development program in science for elementary school teacher in Broome County. The program will offer resources, information and activities to enrich classroom instruction. It will also help prepare teachers for the advent of New York State’s Next Generation Science Standards in 2016



Each year since 2006, the New York Council of Nonprofits (NYCON) has partnered with five local foundations, including the Hoyt Foundation, plus the United Way of Broome County, to conduct the Southern Tier Capacity-Building Program. This initiative includes a series of capacity-building training workshops for nonprofit organizations in Broome County, designed to help those organizations improve their operations, governance and management. Organizations that participate in any of those workshops may then apply for two other forms of capacity-building assistance, a mini-grant program and a mini-assessment program. Hoyt is supporting the 2014 Southern Tier Capacity-Building Program with a grant of $10,000.



The Samaritan Counseling Center (SCC) of the Southern Tier has provided counseling to individuals, couples and families since 1983. With offices in Endicott, Owego and Windsor, SCC takes a spiritually-sensitive approach, designed to empower the whole person. SCC recently completed an organizational assessment through the New York Council of Nonprofits. One insight that emerged is that SCC needs to do a better job of marketing its services. With part of a $25,000 grant from the Hoyt Foundation, SCC will develop, plan and launch a comprehensive marketing initiative. It will use the rest of the money to implement an electronic health records system, as required by the Affordable Care Act.



Based at Trinity Memorial Church in Binghamton, the Trinity Community Canteen serves a hot lunch to people in need every Sunday, plus a bagged meal for later in the day. An average of 85 to 100 guests benefit from this service each week. In 2014, the Hoyt Foundation granted the Trinity Community Canteen $18,500 for upgrades to its kitchen area. That money allows the Canteen to replace a dishwasher so old that it was becoming impossible to repair. The grant will also pay for a new sink, dish tables and pre-rinse faucet, providing a chance to reorganize the kitchen area in a more efficient manner.



The United Presbyterian Church, located in downtown Binghamton, has a history of providing social services to people in need in the local community. In 2014, the Hoyt Foundation provided $5,000 for the Care & Share Project and the Single Mother’s Support Group.



The Village of Endicott created the Endicott Visitor Center as a place where residents and visitors can learn about the histories of Endicott and Johnson City. Housed in the historic Old Colonial Hall/Mansion, the Visitor Center offers tours, educational programs and a research room. It also hosts public events. Permanent exhibits tell the stories of George F. Johnson, Thomas J. Watson and their workers at the Endicott Johnson Corporation and IBM. Rotating exhibits feature antique toys, Union-Endicott Central School District sports and the region’s ethnic groups. The Village will soon launch a major renovation and restoration project at the center, with help from a $50,000 Hoyt Foundation capital grant.


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