A biker tests the new single-track trail near the “River Road” section in Gorham, NH. In coordination with the Gorham Land Company, Coös Cycling Club volunteers designed, constructed, and provided signage for mountain bikers, runners and hikers. Photo by Kara Hunter.

A biker tests the new single-track trail near the “River Road” section in Gorham, NH. In coordination with the Gorham Land Company, Coös Cycling Club volunteers designed, constructed, and provided signage for mountain bikers, runners and hikers. Photo by Kara Hunter.

Neil and Louise Tillotson Fund awards more than $575,000 to support North Country efforts

Grants support education, economic development, basic needs

CONCORD, NH (PRESS RELEASE) – The Neil and Louise Tillotson Fund of the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation recently awarded 16 grants totaling $578,655 through its competitive application program. The Tillotson Fund is one of the largest permanent rural philanthropies in the country, distributing $3 million in grants annually to municipal, educational and nonprofit organizations throughout northern New Hampshire and bordering communities in Vermont and southern Quebec.

The Tillotson Fund was established at the Charitable Foundation in 2006 with a bold vision: to serve as a catalyst for the region to move toward sustainable community and economic development in Coös County and surrounding communities in the U.S. and Canada. In pursuit of that vision, the Tillotson Fund has identified three priority areas for grant making: education, economic development, and basic needs and community safety net.

In the area of education, the Tillotson Fund advisory committee awarded a $19,500 grant to the Northumberland Adult Diploma Program to support its adult high school program over the next three years. The program is free and provides adults the opportunity to become high school graduates through online or in-person classes.

“Quality programs that help youth and adults further their education are essential to building a thriving economy,” said Kirsten Scobie, director of the Tillotson Funds. “We want — as Neil and Louise wanted— the North Country and surrounding regions to flourish.”

“We’re excited to have the support of the Neil and Louise Tillotson Fund,” said Robin Scott, director of the Northumberland Adult Diploma Program. “For many of our students, their high school diploma is just the beginning. We had one student come to us with no diploma and no job, but he had a dream. He wanted to become a nurse. We were able to connect him with an LNA course in Lancaster while he was enrolled in our program. I’m happy to report that he successfully completed both programs and is now applying to college to get his nursing degree.”

The Neil and Louise Tillotson Fund accepts proposals from eligible organizations providing services in Colebrook, Pittsburg, Clarksville, Stewartstown, Dixville Notch and other towns in Coös County, as well as bordering communities in Quebec and Vermont. The fund is also interested in applicants that serve these communities as part of a larger regional effort. The next application deadline is Monday, July 6, 2015. Interested applicants are encouraged to visit www.nhcf.org/tillotson for eligibility requirements, application guidelines and forms, and answers to frequently asked questions. For more information, contact Jean Clarke at 800-464-6641 ext. 20238 or jean.clarke@nhcf.org.

Grant awards were made to the following organizations:

  • Association sportive des jeunes handicaps de l’Estrie of Coaticook, Quebec received $4,725 to offer a daily summer camp experience for eight youth with disabilities in 2015.
  • Centre d’initiative en agriculture de la region de Coaticook of Coaticook, Quebec received $25,000 to purchase new greenhouse infrastructure and support farm apprentices in the Coaticook region.
  • Cohos Trail Association of West Stewartstown, NH received $3,280 to create and produce graphic displays for 10 trailhead kiosks.
  • Connecticut River Artisan Group of West Stewartstown, NH received $10,000 to offer high quality, cultural activities to people visiting and living in the North Country.
  • Coos Cycling Club of Gorham, NH received $20,000 to build a five to 10-mile trail for non-motorized recreational use in Gorham, NH.
  • Ecole Secondaire La Frontaliere of Coaticook, Quebec received $20,000 to upgrade sound and lighting equipment for the school’s auditorium, which serves the community of Coaticook.
  • Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire of Concord, NH received $15,000 to provide 4,000 hot, nutritious meals for the communities of Berlin, Groveton and Woodsville.
  • Governor’s Institutes of Vermont of South Burlington, VT received $3,500 to provide scholarship funds for up to four youth participants to take part in educational programs in South Burlington, Vermont.
  • Nansen Ski Club of Milan, NH received $19,500 to build a warming hut and provide storage for club equipment.
  • New Hampshire Lakes Association of Concord, NH received $15,000 to continue supporting the Summer Youth Employment Program for six participants in the Colebrook community.
  • New Hampshire Teen Institute of Nashua, NH received $19,475 to provide leadership and empowerment training for 40 Coos County youth in Nashua, NH.
  • North Country Community Recreation Center of Colebrook, NH received $150,000 to support capacity building and general operations over three years.
  • North Country Health Consortium of Littleton, NH received $210,000 to provide flexible operating and capacity building support over three years.
  • Northumberland Adult Diploma Program of Northumberland, NH received $19,500 to support its adult high school programs over three years.
  • The Town of Canaan, VT received $18,675 to hire a consultant team to develop a multiyear strategic plan for the town of Canaan.
  • The Town of Pittsburg, NH received $25,000 to construct a gazebo and walking path within the town park.

About the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation

The New Hampshire Charitable Foundation was created in 1962 by and for the people of New Hampshire, and is dedicated to strengthening communities across the Granite State. The Foundation manages a growing collection of 1,700 philanthropic funds created by generous families, individuals and businesses, and awards more than $30 million in grants and scholarships every year. The Foundation invests charitable assets for today and tomorrow; works with generous and visionary citizens to maximize the power of their giving; supports critical work happening in New Hampshire communities and leads and collaborates on high-impact initiatives. For more information, please visit www.nhcf.org or call 603-225-6641.