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SAC Developmental Disabilities Fund awards $24,500 in grants to 14 area nonprofit organizations

The SAC Developmental Disabilities Fund within the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region annually supports community organizations dedicated to improving the lives of people with developmental disabilities through education, independence, and social opportunities. The fund provided $24,500 in grants to 14 nonprofit organizations to support inclusive and accessible programs from equine therapy to installing inclusive playground equipment.

The fund traces its roots to the Sheltered Activity Center (SAC), which was formed by concerned citizens and parents of children with developmental disabilities in 1964 and operated until 1989. Larry Abler and John Cumicek founded the SAC Developmental Disabilities Fund in 1990 to continue the center’s mission. The fund has granted more than $700,000 in grants to community organizations since it was launched.

The SAC Developmental Disabilities Fund provides annual support of $5,000 each to SOAR Fox Cities and Special Olympics Wisconsin-Fox Cities. Other grants awarded in 2023 include:

  • The Building for Kids: $2,000 to upgrade its Space Station, a room designed for kids and adults who might need some space during their museum visit.
  • myTEAM TRIUMPH: $2,000 for its Fox Valley Adaptive Athlete Program, which pairs individuals with diverse abilities with athletes to participate in endurance events.
  • VPI: $1,500 to start a fundraising store to raise money for its community programs. The store also serves as an apparel employment training opportunity for VPI clients.
  • Brillion Optimist Club: $1,000 to install accessible equipment at Horn Park playground, including a zip line, accessible pieces, and musical equipment.
  • Community Alternatives, Inc.: $1,000 for its member social event.
  • Exceptional Equestrians: $1,000 for its hippotherapy and equine-experimental services for individuals and their families living with physical or cognitive disabilities.
  • Lakeside Packaging Plus: $1,000 for its Inclusive Artistry Program, which provides individuals with disabilities access to meaningful art education and opportunities for artistic expression by offering art classes and open studio hours.
  • New Hope Center, Inc.: $1,000 to improve offerings at its day services program.
  • Reflections of Grace Performing Arts School: $1,000 to expand its Dance 4 All program into the Fox Cities, which incorporates inclusive, adaptive, and integrated dance classes for children, adults and seniors with disabilities.
  • The Trout Museum of Art: $1,000 for Project Purpose, a collaborative mural experience led by the museum in partnership with the Appleton Area School District Special Education Autism and Intellectual Disability departments to empower students to express themselves and emphasize their abilities and talents through art.
  • WisconSibs: $1,000 to support WisconSibs Sibsack, curated kits that contain helpful, engaging items designed to assist families in learning more about disabilities for children aged 3-5.
  • YMCA of The Fox Cities: $1,000 to improve assistive, gross motor and sensory equipment at Camp Hope and Camp Inspiration.

The Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, a Fox Cities-based nonprofit founded in 1986, helps people provide long-term support for favorite charities through endowments and other charitable funds. The second-largest certified community foundation in Wisconsin, its donors have allowed it to award more than $453 million to nonprofit organizations from more than 1,829 charitable funds. Affiliated community foundations operate in Brillion, Chilton, Clintonville, Shawano, and Waupaca. To learn more, go to cffoxvalley.org, subscribe to The Loop at cffoxvalley.org/loop or connect with us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube.