CFA Awards Nearly $200K in Spring 2021 Grants

It’s heartening, in light of the pandemic and all the challenges our community has faced, to continue grantmaking at this level of impact. Together, we’re taking care of our community and making concrete investments to help with re-opening and recovery.

Organizations Across the Region Receive Help in a Critical Time

CFA has announced $199,534 in 2021 Spring Grants to support nonprofits across the region, including many arts and cultural organizations working toward recovering from the impacts of the pandemic.

The awards were announced in May at Cresson Lake Playhouse, which received a $7,500 grant to upgrade an outdoor performing space. That space will be put to use for the first time this summer at an annual music festival. The investments will help shape a brighter future for organizations that create community connections through events and the arts.

“The only way that the arts can survive and thrive during troubled times is with support of the community,” playhouse Artistic Director Paul Seymour said. “The Community Foundation for the Alleghenies has been instrumental in providing Cresson Lake Playhouse the means to modify their facility to be able to do outdoor performances. First, the pavilion was funded through their grant in 2018, and now this outdoor stage is currently being funded. Our progress is tied to the generosity of CFA and its contributors, and we are so grateful. Surviving the pandemic hasn’t been easy, but organizations such as CFA have made it possible.”

Altogether, CFA awarded 69 grants to nonprofit organizations that serve Bedford, Cambria, and Somerset counties, with investments in community and economic development; arts and culture; heritage; education; environment; and health and human services. The annual spring grant awards, selected by a distribution committee, are funded through the philanthropy of community-minded donors, past and present.

“Because of our donors, we’ve been able to make significant awards with these semi-annual grant rounds,” CFA President Mike Kane said. “It’s heartening, in light of the pandemic and all the challenges our community has faced, to continue grantmaking at this level of impact. Together, we’re taking care of our community and making concrete investments to help with re-opening and recovery. We want to be forward-looking, and these grants are just that.”

Elsewhere in Cambria County, the Center for Metal Arts Inc., Johnstown Symphony Orchestra, and the Community Arts Center of Cambria County also received spring grant awards, and Touchstone Center for Crafts was awarded funding to help host a national blacksmithing exhibition at a gallery in downtown Johnstown. That exhibit would coincide with the timing of the Johnstown-headquartered Artist Blacksmith’s Association of North America’s (ABANA) inaugural Iron to Art Festival this October. ABANA also received a grant to help develop the organization’s first-ever permanent headquarters site—an office, gallery, retail shop, library, and more—at the historic Johnstown Train Station.

In Somerset County, Confluence Creative Arts Center and Laurel Arts each received more than $7,000 for arts-related projects and programming. Bedford County Players Inc. also received a $7,500 grant, which is to be used for facility improvements. Across the region, residents will be able to enjoy libraries, playgrounds, farmer’s markets, heritage and historical programs, and much more, thanks to help from CFA donors.

Those are all in addition to dozens of other community and economic development efforts and health and human services outreach, including programs to feed needy adults and children in the region, which will receive a boost through the spring grant awards. A full list of grants, by county, is available by CLICKING HERE.