Granby Education Foundation brings arts, lifelong learning to Granby

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Young cooks learned about culinary and life skills at the Jr. Chef Boot Camp, a summer camp organized by Nourish My Soul. Submitted photo

For the past 20 years, the Granby Education Foundation has funded more than 170 grants to local schools and nonprofits totaling over $375,000 in educational and artistic programming. Last year, grants were awarded to six Granby nonprofits and the Granby Public Schools, positively impacting residents of all ages. These grants included music and dance performances, robotics funding, culinary arts instruction to children of military families dealing with PTSD, and an intergenerational book club. Two grants stood out to the board as particularly engaging to the community.

This past year, GEF expanded its vision of the arts to include the culinary arts with a $6,000 grant awarded to local nonprofit Nourish My Soul, an organization dedicated to improving our food system through community-based agriculture, nutrition education, and youth empowerment. The grant funded two one-week sessions of Jr. Chef Boot Camp this summer. The camp taught culinary skills as well as resilience building for children of Connecticut National Guard veterans suffering from PTSD. Jr. Chef participants explored the culinary arts, food systems, nutrition, leadership, and teamwork with a resilience curriculum woven throughout to better equip the children for difficult life situations they may face.

In its twentieth year, the GEF also completed funding a two-year special project to help establish a Strings Program for grades K-3. With the $40,000 grant, the schools purchased violins, bows, and cases for students at Kelly Lane Primary School and Wells Road Intermediate School. During violin class, students listen to orchestral music, warm up their fingers, move to rhythms, practice how to hold the violin and bow, and the importance of respecting and caring for the instrument. Many students are already beginning to play songs on their violins.

The GEF is proud to offer grants to all Granby nonprofits and schools. Community Grants support creative and innovative projects that increase knowledge and skills, expand perspectives, and enrich understanding. Arts Endowment Grants help fund opportunities that broaden our exposure to music, dance, and visual arts. In addition, the GEF has two endowed tribute funds that support specific activities. The Cal Hemingway Tribute Fund supports grants for youth public service and the Nannie Brown Tribute Fund backs early education grants. Nonprofits and schools wishing to apply for any grant that totals $750 or less may apply for a mini-grant, which offers a faster and more streamlined application process. For more information about the GEF and the grants it has awarded or for grant applications, please visit

The Granby Education Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that continues to thrive, thanks to generous donations from the public. Donations can be made online through the website or sent to: Granby Education Foundation, P.O. Box 351, Granby, CT 06035. Working together, the GEF will continue to enrich the community with quality arts and education programming for Granby residents of all ages.