Interns Award $50,000

The Community Foundation for the Alleghenies’ 2014 Youth Philanthropy Interns have awarded two grants of $25,000 each.

Mikella Buncich, Ryan King, Daniel Klein, Liz Stiffler, and senior intern Kendra Slis awarded $25,000 to the Alternative Community Resource Program (along with partnering organizations: the City of Johnstown, Entreprenurial Alchemy and the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown) to fund the “Hometowns Exposed” teenage marketing program with a mobile application as the driving force.

One key point that the interns like about the program is how it will incorporate local youth in the production of the app as well as with support materials. The project goal is to reach thousands of youth and young adults and encourage them to get involved within the community and discover what this area has to offer.  The collaboration with UPJ students will provide the technical support as well as a constant feed of new ideas and material sustaining the program for years into the future. This program, though geared to youth and young adults, will also benefit local businesses by promoting events and activities to this target audience.

The second program, entitled “KEYS: Knowing, Eating and Yearning for Sustainability,” will address food insecurity in our region. The interns awarding the grant are Nathan Madison, Abigail Paonessa, Jonathan Skufca and Kaitlyn Thomas. They are led by senior intern Anthony Wagner V.

“I feel like my team’s RFP is tackling a big issue our region is facing,” Wagner commented, “and I was pleased to see them receive strong applications.”

A $25,000 grant is being awarded to the Flood City Youth Fitness Academy (FCYFA) to incorporate a nutrition program into their after-school “Safe Haven” Program.

“This program will incorporate all of the goals we asked for: nutrition, a healthy lifestyle and preparing meals,” said intern Jonathan Skufca. “It is especially important that they are educating the youth of the area.”

The FCYFA will host the “Safe Haven” program for Greater Johnstown School District students at their Lincoln Street facility four nights each week from 6-9 p.m. during the school year. This award will allow them to include nutrition education into their program. They also hope to create a rooftop garden in the coming year.

The Youth Philanthropy Internship program is made possible by a grant from The Heinz Endowments. The Endowments supports efforts to make southwestern Pennsylvania a premier place to live and work, a center for learning and educational excellence, and a region that embraces diversity and inclusion.