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Bonafiglia Family Foundation Invests $94,622 in Seneca County Projects & Initiatives

Judy Wentzel
Executive Director
Bonafiglia Foundation Inc. 

From January through February of this year the Bonafiglia Family Foundation was accepting funding proposals through their Call for Ideas Grant opportunity.  This responsive grant was designed to see what local charitable organizations came back with, helping the foundation gain a better understanding of the needs within local communities and identify how best to support these organizations who are doing good work aligning with their mission, values, & focus areas. 

Early this month the Bonafiglia Family Foundation invested $94,622 into local projects & initatives. The underlying themes of giving addressed food insecurity, promoting community events, education and workforce development, and sustainability of programs for youth’s basic needs.  

There was a total of 17 organizations who service communities within Seneca County who were supported through this grant opportunity. Some of these organizations include Mozaic-Finger Lakes Textiles, Seneca Falls Education Foundation, Community Action Program Cayuga-Seneca, Waterloo Library & Historical Society, and Seneca County Community Garden. 

The most significant award, $25,000 was given to the Seneca Falls Education Foundation to support the Seneca Falls Central School District (SFCSD) initiative to shift to the “Science of Reading” instructional approach. 

The Seneca Falls Central School District is grateful to the Bonafiglia Family Foundation for recognizing the need to improve student literacy, shares Dr. Michelle Reed, Superintendent of SFCSD.  Dr. Reed states “supporting our literacy initiative to provide current research-based reading instruction will benefit not only individual students but our whole community. The children we grow now will become the future members of our towns. The Bonafiglia Family Foundation has made it possible for elementary teachers to gain knowledge in the Science of Reading so they can support our students.” 

Judy Wentzel, Executive Director for the Bonafiglia Family Foundation expresses, the biggest takeaway from this grantmaking process was relationship building; the opportunity to listen and learn from these organizations and have intimate conversations around their challenges and goals. Judy states, “it’s been a humbling and valuable experience for the Bonafiglia Family Foundation to begin recognizing ways to strategically support and impact the people and places we love.”