Friday, April 25, 2014

The Gift That Benefits Many



The warm weather of fall has certainly lingered well into November this year and it is hard to imagine that we will soon be listening to Christmas songs, decorating our homes and trees with lights, and scrambling to think of that perfect gift to buy for our favorite family member, friend, or co-worker.  It’s a decision we must make every year and we make countless lists of ideas focusing in on our gift recipients’ hobbies and activities as we consider what they like to read, watch, wear, eat, and drink. The lists go on and on and more often than naught, we have a tendency to lose those lists or end up having several lying around that add confusion to our life!  A daunting and time consuming task it becomes to find that perfect gift that will express how important they are to us and our hope is they won’t want to re-gift it or exchange it for something else.

As we enter this season of benevolence, remembering those that we love and care for, we at the Community Foundation of the Endless Mountains encourage you to think outside your normal realm of gift giving.  This year why not consider making a donation to the Community Foundation in honor of that special person that you want to acknowledge?  There are over 150 funds managed by the Community Foundation of the Endless Mountains and each endowment is very unique in and of itself.  You can find a fund to coordinate with just about any interest of your gift recipient including scholarships for students attending college for nursing, music, history, education and the arts. Likewise, there are scholarships for the culinary arts and for automotive trade schools.  The Community Foundation currently has assets above 7.5 million dollars and nearly 2.5 million dollars in our funds were designated to schools last year.  What a difference your gift will make in the life of a student who is faced with the rising cost of tuition and increased expenses for his education!

 The Community Foundation also manages funds that benefit human resource agencies, animal shelters, parks, food pantries, farming, healthcare, hospice, libraries and fire departments.  The Foundation will work with any charity or organization.   One particular fund, the Women Helping Women Fund, prioritizes women’s concerns including safety, economic justice, education and leadership. There is even a flexible new fund called “Undesignated Fund” that provides funding for unpredictable needs or urgent crisis in our community. There is a fund for just about any charitable purpose one would consider and we currently have donors and recipients from northeastern PA to as far away as England and Japan. 

As we enter this season of gift giving, may you consider making a donation to the Community Foundation in lieu of purchasing that typical Christmas sweater or box of candy.    Recently, a family made a very generous gift of $1,000 to the Foundation to benefit a school district in our county.  Whether your gift is small or large when combined with others it will may an even greater impact on our community.  Give the gift that keeps on giving for years to come and benefits many in our Communities.  Collectively, we can make a difference this Christmas Season.  For more information regarding our funds and how you can make a donation to the Community Foundation, please visit our or contact us at (570)-278-3800.  


Foundation in Happenings Magazine

Don't miss this month's issue of Happenings Magazine!  The Community Foundation is featured in an article highlighting $62,000 in assistance to the Abington Heights Educational Improvement Organization.  To read the article online visit Happenings Magazine online.

Pennstar Bank Supports Local Education

Donation Pennstar 2013For the tenth consecutive year Pennstar Bank has made a generous contribution to the Pennsylvania Education Improvement Tax Credit Program administered by The Community Foundation of the Endless Mountains. For the 2013-2014 academic year the bank has contributed $12,000 which will help provide tuition assistance to approximately 300 students from low and moderate income families who attend Pre-School and tuition based K-12 schools and programs in northeastern Pennsylvania as well as funding special programs in the public schools. The Community Foundation has administered the Education Improvement Program since 2003 and in that time has raised nearly $2,000,000 for education assistance for more than 2,300 students attending 37 schools in four counties, as well as funding curriculum projects in the Susquehanna Community, Montrose Area, and Abington Heights school districts. Since 2004 Pennstar Bank has contributed more than $84,000 for education assistance in northeastern Pennsylvania. Community Foundation President, Peter Quigg, states that "Pennstar Bank has been a consistent supporter of education in our region and their generosity over the years has been a great help to local families and schools."

Pennstar Bank provides personal banking, asset management, and business services. The independent community bank, headquartered in Scranton, Pennsylvania, has 35 offices in six northeastern Pennsylvania counties. Pennstar Bank is a division of NBT Bank, which is based in Norwich, N.Y., and has 93 offices in upstate New York, northwestern Vermont, and western Massachusetts, and southern New Hampshire. For more information about the bank please visit For more information about the work of The Community Foundation please visit

People in photograph left to right:

Peter Quigg, President The Community Foundation
Robert Welch, Senior Vice President & Market Manager Pennstar Bank


Schreiber Fund Benefits Culinary Program

Schreiber 2013 1024x683At the start of the current academic year the Leopold & Jane Schreiber Culinary Arts Fund provided a $600 grant to help support the Culinary Program of the Susquehanna County Career & Technology Center. This permanent endowment was established by friends and employees of Leopold Schreiber and his late wife Jane. Many will recognize Leopold as the proprietor of Chocolates by Leopold in downtown Montrose, formerly of Binghamton. His confections have proven to be a favorite not only among locals, but also by a growing number of mail-order and online customers. Leopold has been practicing his craft since he was 12 years old and it seemed a natural fit that this endowment should help local students seeking similar training.

The Schreiber Fund is a component of The Elk Lake School District Foundation, which is an Affiliate of The Community Foundation of the Endless Mountains and is intended to provide annual support to the SCCTC's Culinary Program which runs the Touch of Class Restaurant in the Serfass Solarium at The Technology Center and which is open to the public. This endowment is similar to The Bondurant Family Fund at The Community Foundation that provides support to the Automotive Departments of the SCCTC. Students from seven school districts in Susquehanna and Wyoming Counties attend the award winning Career & Technology Center. Those interested in honoring Jane and Leopold while also assisting future generations of local culinary students may send their tax deductible donations to The Community Foundation at 270 Lake Avenue in Montrose, PA 18801. Alumni of the Culinary Program have gone on to many illustrious careers around the world and surely more will follow.

People in Photograph Left to Right:

Jill Wiedmaier: Culinary Faculty
Tom Follert: Production Manager Chocolates By Leopold
Leopold Schreiber:
David Dunster: Culinary Faculty
Peter Quigg: Community Foundation
Alice Davis: Director SCCTC


Women Helping Women Fund Holds 2nd Annual Breakfast




“Passion and persistence of a core group can inspire change for an entire community”.   These empowering words spoken by Diane Koloski , Women Helping Women Steering Committee ,  to those that attended the second annual Women Helping Women Breakfast held at the Community Foundation on October 5, 2013 were a call to action and a challenge to make a difference in the lives of women and children living in the Endless Mountains.  The Breakfast was held to bring awareness to an initiative that was inspired by one woman who had a heart for her community and a concern for women and the obstacles that hinder them from achieving security and financial independence.  Judy Albert Ventresca made a lasting impact on her community in 2004 when she made a decision to spend the entire last year of her professional career, working for women.  Judy deposited every pay check of that year in a fund she designated “For the Women”.  She eventually invited other women to join her efforts and The Women Helping Women Fund was developed that is managed by the Community Foundation of the Endless Mountains.  It will perpetually provide grants to non-profit organizations that assist women in achieving autonomy, financial security, and safety. 

 Since the first annual breakfast in 2012, The Women Helping Women Fund has tripled in value by new donations and pledges.   With the devastating and lasting impact of domestic violence on our rural community this past winter, the Steering Committee of the Women Helping Women Fund was compelled to focus on grants that would provide assistance for dating violence education for the young people of our county. At the Breakfast, Diane Koloski emphasized that, “teaching is the way.”  She said,

“To teach is to give a skill set, a tool-box, if you will for healthy decision making in relationships.”  This past spring the Fund was able to provide a combined total of $3,000 in grants to Care Net, Women’s Resource Center, and Trehab to assist them with their education needs.    Grant Recipient Representatives Lisa Schmidt , Care Net; Peg Ruddy, Women’s Resource Center; and Tammi Mowry, Trehab each expressed their appreciation at the Breakfast to the Women Helping Women Founders and acknowledged the lasting and positive impact that the grants would have on women and young girls in our community.   Collaboration accelerates outcomes; there is still time to become a founding member of this group and make a difference in our community.  If you are interested in becoming involved with this initiative that was founded by women, led by women, and focused on meeting the needs of women of the Endless Mountains, please contact The Community Foundation of the Endless Mountains at their website or 570-278-3800.



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