2016 Grantees

Autism Society of Colorado | Latino Connections

The mission of the Autism Society of Colorado (ASC) is to improve the lives of all affected by autism. This includes families, providers, educators and members of the community. Currently one out of every 45 children is diagnosed with autism. ASC works to advocate, inform and share the autism journey with thousands of Coloradans. The Get Grounded Foundation grant will help launch the ASC’s new “Latino Connections” program, an educational initiative that will provide additional education and access to Latinos, Hispanics and Spanish-speaking families with children who have been diagnosed with autism in the Denver area.

“I’m excited to officially launch the Latino Connections initiative because it will create a safe and inclusive environment for Latino families to share their autism journey.” – Dana Meeker, Programs Director

Child Advocates – Denver CASA

“Child Advocates – Denver CASA is extraordinarily grateful for The Get Grounded Foundation’s support in getting the Youth Empowerment Program off of the ground. Many of the children we work with are on track to age out of foster care by the age of 18 without typical growing up experiences, like applying for jobs, opening bank accounts or giving back to their communities. Through workshops, trainings and monthly activities, the Youth Empowerment Program will greatly increase the likelihood of participants securing stable employment, leading healthy lives and, most importantly, being able to cope with the trauma they have experienced in a productive way. The Get Grounded Foundation’s generous support will ensure that young victims of abuse and neglect will leave the system empowered and with a voice of their own.” – Julie Wilson, Director of Fund Development and Public Relations

Denver Indian Family Resource Center

“Denver Indian Family Resource Center is delighted to continue our partnership with the Get Grounded Foundation. Last year, funding from the foundation supported providing craft materials for American Indian and Alaska Native children to assist them in developing connections with their culture. Our funding allowed us to begin offering monthly Culture Nights, which are now open events for the community to join us in learning about and creating a traditional art or craft. We thank the foundation for their continued support!” – Sarah M. Nelson, LSW, MPH, Deputy Director

Denver Kids, formerly known as Denver Urban Scholars

“At Denver Urban Scholars, we are excited to strengthen and expand our sixth-grade group mentoring program with support from The Get Grounded Foundation. This program introduces youth, in a group setting with their peers, to the idea of having a mentor prior to being matched in seventh grade with a one-to-one mentor. By engaging students early on in this enhanced programming, we are building confidence and relationship skills that will ensure long-term impact.” – Susan Duncombe, Vice President of Programs

ECDC – African Community Center

“The ECDC – African Community Center is deeply committed to the inclusion and personal growth of refugee youth in the Denver community. Through our Youth 4 Youth mentoring program, refugee youth will be paired to facilitate rich conversations about diversity, leadership and community engagement. The ECDC – African Community Center thanks The Get Grounded Foundation for its dedication to supporting marginalized youth in our community.” – Melissa Theesen, Managing Director

Mount Saint Vincent | Foster Care Program

Mount Saint Vincent is a Denver-based treatment center for children ages 5 to 12 who face severe behavioral and emotional challenges due to trauma, mental illness, abuse or neglect. It specializes in delivering behavioral health services to children and their families, helping children reach their full potential within their homes, schools and communities. The foundation grant will help Mount Saint Vincent launch its new foster care program.

“The decision to offer foster care services aligns with our longstanding mission to serve the needs of children. As a child-focused agency, we are uniquely positioned to provide foster caregivers support and instruction based on the principles of trauma-informed care. We are deeply honored and thankful to have earned the support of the Get Grounded Foundation, who are helping us realize our goal of keeping children where they belong – in safe, loving and supportive homes.” – Kirk Ward, LCSW, Executive Director and Clinical Director


“PlatteForum is thrilled to partner again with GroundFloor Media and The Get Grounded Foundation. Their generous support has truly helped promote our mission to improve high school graduation rates and promote community involvement through the arts.” – Kim Estes McCarty, Executive Director

Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center

“Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center has a long history of finding innovative ways to supplement our legal services for abused and trauma-affected children, and our yoga program adds another evidence-based approach to helping children heal and thrive. We are so grateful for the generous support of The Get Grounded Foundation for this program and for all of their great work for children in Colorado.” – Becky Miller Updike, Executive Director

Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters Colorado

“In the coming year, Share our Strength and the No Kid Hungry Colorado campaign are doubling down on our investment in a two-generation approach to ending childhood hunger, focusing more efforts on educating young, low-income parents of zero to five-year-old children. Support from The Get Grounded Foundation will help us meet the specific needs of this population with tailored nutrition and food skills programming. We look forward to strengthening the physical and financial health of young Colorado families in partnership with the foundation.” – Kelleen Zubick, Colorado State Director

Zuma’s Rescue Ranch | Equine Therapy Program

Zuma’s Rescue Ranch serves as a sanctuary and place of healing for both humans and animals in the Denver area. The Get Grounded Foundation grant will fund Zuma’s ZEAL program, which will provide the opportunity for children living at group homes to participate in Zuma’s therapeutic summer camp.

“Getting a $5,000 grant for our children’s ZEAL program will provide the opportunity for kids living at group homes to join us in a therapeutic summer camp. Kids without homes feel less left behind and lost, as Zuma’s herd of horses that were also once homeless and lost are kindred spirits to these kids. Pairing the homeless children and once homeless horses in a safe setting opens the stage for recovery of one’s lost identity. Mentors, counselors and therapists have developed programs that help these kids find purpose, develop self-esteem and learn to cope with the hand life has dealt them.” – Jodi Messenich, Founder and Executive Director