The Whitefish Community Foundation recently awarded the Whitefish Middle School and High School Music Departments a $30,000 Grant on behalf of a private donor.
The Community Foundation was very pleased to be involved in bringing funding to the music departments. The grant was awarded through the Community Foundation as a donor directed grant to the Whitefish School District designating $20,000 to upgrade the band department’s instruments, $9,000 for Orchestra instruments and choir robes, and $1000 for both departments to purchase sheet music.
Many of the instruments currently owned by the school are up to 60 years old, the choir robes are 50 years old and all are showing, and sounding, their age. “This donation will benefit literally hundreds of students in the next 20 plus years who will play these instruments,” McCrady said. “Some will discover a lifelong love for playing music, which can not happen without proper equipment.”
Besides the competitive grant program that provides funding for nonprofits and school programs, the Foundation helps donors give to the community in other ways. One instrument often used by donors is the donor-advised fund program which is generally used by donors in lieu of opening a private foundation. Another alternative is the donor-directed grant program. Donors will often seek advice from the Foundation on a particular nonprofit and its programs when trying to decide where their money would be most beneficial. In this particular case, the Foundation had the opportunity to introduce a donor to the needs of the Whitefish Schools music programs. Both Mark McCrady and Jenanne Solberg met with the donor to discuss the current needs facing their departments. “Funding for music instruments or upgrades is not something the school district can afford,” said Mark McCrady. Foundation Director Linda Engh-Grady said the donors were very pleased with the music program and the organization and dedication of the music program instructors.