The Bridge Project
The Bridge Project (Bridge) was founded in 1991 as a unique community collaboration between the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Denver, the Denver Housing Authority (DHA) and community representatives. Bridge was designed to help mitigate the extremely high dropout rates in Denver’s public housing communities by emphasizing education and a holistic view of child development. It has served children in Denver’s public housing neighborhoods for more than 25 years. The grant funding will be used to launch the Printing Prodigies Project (P3) for the elementary and middle school youth across all four Bridge sites, primarily covering the cost of purchasing 3D printers and materials.
“This new initiative allows us to enhance our project-based learning for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math),” said Jesse Burne, executive director of The Bridge Project. “In order to effectively grow and nurture curious minds in STEM, we must expose them to unique and innovative learning opportunities; 3D printing helps us do that. For many of our students, this will be a first-time experience. We can’t wait to see the positive outcome this opportunity brings.”
CASA of Jefferson & Gilpin Counties
The mission of Child Advocates – CASA of Jefferson & Gilpin Counties (court-appointed special advocates) is to advocate for the best interests of abused and neglected children in Juvenile Court through the services of specially selected and trained community volunteers. These volunteers are the children’s representatives in court when there is suspicion of abuse or neglect. That said, only 35 percent of all cases have CASAs appointed to them. This grant will help change that statistic and will give CASA of Jefferson & Gilpin Counties the funding to allow them to recruit, train and manage additional peer coordinators.
“We are absolutely thrilled to exponentially grow our program and the number of abused and neglected children we are able to truly help,” said Emily Thomas, grants manager of CASA of Jefferson & Gilpin Counties. “We are also excited to continue providing ways for our committed CASA volunteers to stay vitally involved with supporting children in our community.”
“Thank you for your extraordinary generosity in supporting our Early Education Intervention Advocacy Program. Watching this program grow from a desire to prevent truancy for one child to a program with the potential to serve twelve families at risk of truancy within the next year is quite incredible. We are so excited to get this program off the ground as we continue to seek methods and means to promote childhood academic success, increase graduation rates in Colorado, and prevent Denver’s children and families from entering the court system. Support from The Get Grounded Foundation will have a significant impact on these families within the next year and promote the success of at-risk children for years to come. Thank you so much!” – Allie Broas, Operations and Grants Manager and Denver CASA
The Denver Children’s Advocacy Center
The Denver Children’s Advocacy Center’s (DCAC) mission is to prevent abuse, strengthen families and restore childhood. Its programs fall along a continuum of care that includes prevention, early intervention, crisis response, forensic interviews, mental health treatment and family support services. Funds from the foundation will be used to help launch a trauma-sensitive yoga program for the children served at DCAC and in the community who have been subjected to abuse and neglect.
“I am beyond thrilled to be attending the Trauma Center’s Trauma-Sensitive Yoga (TC-TSY) certification program this September,” said Jessica Gershwin, bilingual child & family therapist at DCAC. “Current, evidence-based research shows that yoga is an effective methodology for treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms, as it helps to enhance self-regulation, body awareness, self-compassion, positive-thinking and connectedness. The inclusion of yoga and mindfulness practices will serve as an ideal complement to the child-focused therapeutic services we currently provide.”
“Programs such as Culture Night allow us to use traditional arts and crafts to leverage protective factors such as social support, safe spaces, cultural hope, and traditional culture as a source of resilience. Denver Indian Family Resource Center is thrilled to have the support of the community in getting this program off the ground so that we can empower American Indians and Alaska Natives in the Denver community.” – McKenna Ganz, Development Manager at Denver Indian Family Resource Center
PCs for People
The mission of PCs for People is to create new opportunities by providing affordable personal computers, computer repairs and internet service to people with limited technological experience due to social, physical or economic circumstances. PCs for People strives to provide the necessary tools to put a functional computer into the hands of low-income individuals and get them online. The grant funding will be used to support two local non-profits, Denver CASA and the Denver Children’s Home.
“PCs for People is thankful to partner with the Get Grounded Foundation in an effort to expand the digital inclusion impact in our community. A recent study indicated that 70 percent of all teachers assign homework online. By distributing computers to students, we are closing the digital divide of their more affluent peers, and providing tools for the students to complete their assignments at home and become productive members of the community,” said Julie Seltz, executive director of PCs for People. “The equipment is sourced from companies that upgrade their computer systems and recycle old equipment.”
With the funding from the Get Grounded Foundation, Denver CASA will receive four laptops to outfit the technology lab in their new CASA house, where children and their advocates gather to connect in a safe space. PCs for People will also partner with the Denver Children’s Home to provide 21 desktop computers to update their computer lab and eight laptops for interactive learning and Skype therapy sessions with families who live out of the Denver metro area. “We are extremely grateful to PCs for People for helping us better achieve our mission through access to much-needed equipment,” said Rebecca Hea, Denver Children’s Home executive director. “Their equipment is allowing us to better serve children and families in need as we deploy them to support our critical programs that help kids connect with the community through virtual learning opportunities and with outside support networks.”
Through a partnership with more than 25 low-income elementary schools, Playworks engages more than 10,000 kids every day with safe and healthy play. Based on generous donors, including a grant from the Get Grounded Foundation, Playworks now works with more than 560 students in the Junior Coach Leadership Program where students are taught leadership skills, social-emotional skills, and conflict resolution during weekly two-hour meetings with trained Playworks Coaches. Junior Coaches, in turn, apply those leadership skills on the Playground as game leaders, conflict mitigators and models of inclusion. Finally, Playworks provides more than 700 students with opportunities in after-school developmental leagues including floor hockey, co-ed volleyball and a girls’ basketball league.