Celebrate Diversity Proyect
In January of 2002 Lilly Endowment awarded a $2.7 million dollar grant to the Celebrate Diversity Project of the Noble County Community Foundation to develop and assist programs in bridging the cultural gaps. What is the Celebrate Diversity Project? It is a grant aimed to help Noble County translate its cultural diversity into community enrichment instead of confusion and strife.
The Celebrate Diversity Project mission is to better the Noble County community through expanded educational and cultural opportunities that decrease prejudice and fear, encourage language and communication skills, foster economic well being, and motivate the desire for higher education and community involvement among people of all ages.
The Celebrate Diversity Project accomplishes that mission through a communication center and various agencies all working to bridge cultural gaps: Over the past year, a communication center was opened to provide grants for cultural classes and workshops, literacy programs, and for educational or informational materials. In the first year we have managed to give out grants to the three county school and various agencies in order to help them to enhance their programs and to Celebrate the Diversity of Noble County. We are working to broaden our reach with our bilingual answer line that is open Monday thru Friday from am to 5pm, and a coalition that is in process of finding the most pressing needs and ways to address them. A Taste of Noble County festival is also in the works for May 10, 2003. This will be a festival celebrating the cultures of our county through food, games, and fun.
We are also working through various agencies to expand their reach. The 4-H program has collaborated with the Kids Cafe to offer a safe place for kids to go after school for activities and a warm meal. Noble Transit has received a new van to broaden their reach. The Experiencias de La Vida program (a work study program for high school kids)has been started at West Noble and plans to reach out to East and Central Noble Schools in the second year. The schools have received a boost for their Early Intervention education programs to help pre-kindergarten and kindergarten students to ensure success. The Public and school libraries have received grants to purchase materials on various cultures and to add programming.
The Celebrate Diversity Project is a three year initiative that hopes to build a stung foundation to enable the continuation of grants and assistance to agencies already in existence while continuously searching for ways to better the county through new initiatives. Anyone wishing to contribute to the Celebrate Diversity Project may do so by contacting the office at 1-866-894-6832 or 260-894-9078. A Diversity Education Endowment fund, established in January of 2002, allows tax deductible donations to be made for the continuation of the Diversity Project in the years to come.