Gulf Coast Giving: Grants, Gifts, and Growth

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Holiday Giving Tree Project at Sarasota Orthopedic Associates

The staff of Sarasota Orthopedic Associates will once again participate in their Giving Tree project to fulfill the wishes of local families in need.

Last year, the SOA staff donated over one hundred new items of clothing, toys, and furniture to local families to make their holidays joyous. Canned and dry food donations were collected from staff and patients.

The SOA staff is currently purchasing needed new clothing items as well as “wish lists” of toys, dolls, games, crafts, and super heroes. Anyone wishing to donate to this spirit of the season effort may drop off a new toy or cash donation at any of the Sarasota Orthopedic Associates locations before Thursday, December 13th. Gifts and gift cards will be delivered to the local families in time for the children to have a Christmas morning surprise from their Secret Santa! For drop-off locations, please go to the SOA website This project is in partnership with Circus Arts Sarasota.

Caldwell Trust Company and Agape Flights Send Santa’s Sleigh on Thanksgiving flight

The companies team up to deliver traditional Thanksgiving dinners to missionaries far from home

Caldwell Trust Company and Agape Flights teamed up to bring a taste of home to missionaries working in Haiti, the Bahamas, and the Dominican Republic. Allen T. Speer, CEO of Agape Flights, planned to fly traditional Thanksgiving dinners to the missionaries living abroad. Agape had planes, pilots and volunteers to prepare the dinner packages, but they needed funds to pay for the meals, $80 each. Caldwell’s staff members made personal donations and Caldwell Trust Company matched them, providing 36 dinners for those living away from the comforts of home, family and friends.

SCF’s Dental Hygiene Program and Clinic Receive Grant to Purchase Equipment

The dental hygiene program and clinic at State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) has purchased new equipment designed to teach students and to care for patients thanks to a $40,000 grant from The Lawrence E. Ruf Commitment to Excellence Fund of the Manatee Community Foundation.

From left, Cassandra Holmes, SCF Foundation Executive Director; Susie Bowie, Manatee Community Foundation-Executive Director; Kimberly Bastin, SCF Dental Hygiene-Program Chair

For more information or to schedule an appointment, call the SCF Dental Hygiene Clinic at 941-752-5353. To support equipment purchases for SCF’s health programs, visit or call Barbara Bourgoin, development director, at 941-752-5398 or

The Sarasota Ballet Receives Arts Appreciation Grant from Gulf Coast Community Foundation

Grant will support 2017-2018 Season with seven programs, including 13 ballets by some of the most celebrated and prestigious choreographers and composers of the ballet world. 

“Gulf Coast continues to be an extraordinary resource for our Company,” says Joseph Volpe, Executive Director of The Sarasota Ballet. “Not only for the grants that help us to bring the highest quality of dance to Sarasota, but also for the learning opportunities they provide that enrich our board and staff.”

This grant will support the 2017-2018 Season, which features seven programs, including 13 ballets by some of the most celebrated and prestigious choreographers and composers of the ballet world.

“This artistic freedom is made possible in part by Gulf Coast Community Foundation and it enhances our Company and this community.” – Iain Webb

For season schedule click here or visit

Goodwill helping veterans and their families during the holidays

Goodwill Manasota’s Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program (HVRP) is offering a special opportunity for community members to help local veterans and their families. Program staff members have created an Angel Tree to provide the children of homeless or at-risk veterans with presents this holiday season. Goodwill invites the community to participate and help make the holidays brighter for these children.

Goodwill Veterans Services Program case managers are working with agencies and organizations that serve veterans – including its housing partners Jewish Family & Children’s Service and Turning Points – to identify prospective families, learn what at-risk veterans need this holiday season, and to create a gift wish list for each child, striving to ensure no one is missed. 

The gift requests will be printed on tags and used to decorate an Angel Tree at the Goodwill Veterans Services Program Office, located at 8490 Lockwood Ridge Road in Sarasota. Community members can pick an Angel Tree tag in three ways: by visiting the veterans office in person, by going to, or by calling the veterans office at (941) 355-2721, ext. 451. They can then purchase that gift and deliver it to the veterans office by December 18. Goodwill Manasota volunteers and staff will distribute donated gifts to families. 

Visible Men Academy Announces $150,000 Matching Gift Challenge from Charlotte Perret Family Trust

Through December 31, 2017, any donation made to Visible Men Academy will be matched dollar to dollar up to $150,000 by the Charlotte Perret Family Trust.

“This is a transformational gift for our school, says Neil Phillips, Co-Founder of VMA, thanks to Charlotte’s generosity, this investment will allow us to deliver our innovative VMA whole child and family program, invest in our teachers and curriculum and ensure that our 5th year of operations is our strongest ever.”

To learn more, contact or (941) 758-7588.

SBPO Reaches $2.1 Million Goal to Reimagine Sarasota’s Bayfront

Funding goal met two weeks before city and community kick-off activation events take place

Sarasota Bayfront Planning Organization has reached its $2.1 million fundraising goal to ensure the delivery of a professionally prepared master plan for the sustainable development of the 42-acre Sarasota Bayfront. Nearly 60 donors have invested in the planning initiative to reimagine Sarasota’s Bayfront. Many foundations also provided financial support including The Patterson Foundation, the Gulf Coast Community Foundation, the Charles and Margery Barancik Foundation, the Community Foundation of Sarasota County and the William G. and Marie Selby Foundation.

For more information, please visit

Friendship Centers Receives $15,000 Grant from Wilson-Wood Foundation

Grant will help fund the Centers’ Caregiver Resource Center Outreach Program in Newtown and South Sarasota County

Friendship Centers, a non-profit organization serving older adults in Southwest Florida for more than 40 years, has received a $15,000 grant from the Wilson-Wood Foundation. The funds will be used toward the development and expansion of the Caregiver Resource Center (CRC) on the Road program which was begun in 2011. Through this grant and other generous donors to this program, needed services will continue and expand into South Sarasota County, and are free to anyone who needs them.

For more information about the Friendship Centers, visit or call 941.955.2122

Nearly $2M Raised Towards $5M Goal to Preserve Historic Ringling Residence

Numerous capital and endowment gifts from individuals, foundations and government combine to support architectural treasure

The Ringling has raised $1.97 million toward its $5 million goal to preserve and maintain Ca’ d’Zan, the palatial 36,000-square-foot winter residence of John and Mable Ringling completed in 1926. Preserving and enhancing Ca’ d’Zan is one of the key funding initiatives of The Ringling Inspires, the institution’s current capital campaign.           

The Bolger Foundation donated $500,000 to restore the Ca’ d’Zan pool, a signature feature of the home, in honor of the dedication of Ron McCarty, Keeper of Ca’ d’Zan, who will retire after more than 35 years of overseeing the mansion. In addition, Cornelia and J. Richard “Dick” Matson have gifted $100,000 to restore John Ringling’s balcony, and The Linnie E. Dalbeck Memorial Foundation has pledged $25,000 towards overall preservation of the home. Endowment support includes $320,000 from Susie Barbee and Vic Hotto; $250,000 from Hudson and Anne Smith; $225,000 from Dennis Pierce and David Schuler, longtime volunteers at Ca’ d’Zan; and $50,000 from Barbara Zdziarski.

The Ringling Inspires is a major component of Raise the Torch: The Campaign for Florida State, the most comprehensive fundraising campaign in University history. With a goal of $1 billion, Raise the Torch seeks to honor FSU’s strong tradition of excellence by creating a bright future for students, alumni and the entire University community. Visit for more information.

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