Junior Board Enrichment Grants

FSW’s Junior Board conducts fundraisers year-round to raise money for its Junior Board Enrichment Grant Fund. FSW program leaders can then apply to the Junior Board to be considered for grant funding for pilot programs or special events.

Each fall, a committee of FSW’s Junior Board is responsible for analyzing the applications it has received and making recommendations to the entire Junior Board, which then votes on how to award its annual Enrichment Grant funds.

Listed below are some recent examples of FSW programs and events that have received Junior Board Enrichment Grant funding.

Social Enrichment for Children with Autism and Other Social Challenges
This grant funded expanded and enhanced social skills programs for special needs children at FSW’s Echo Hills Family Mental Health Clinic in Hastings-on-Hudson.

Theater Trip for Therapeutic Foster Care Families
This grant provided children in FSW’s Therapeutic Foster Care program and their foster parents the opportunity to attend a theatrical production, enabling them to experience creative expression and to spend quality time together.

Adoption Conference for Adoption and Children’s Services Staff
This grant enabled two staff members to attend the Adoptive Parents Committee annual conference in November 2014. The staff members participated in a panel to advocate for the merits of working with a private agency like FSW to adopt a child through the foster care system.

Zoo and Aquarium Trips for Children with Their Formerly Incarcerated Fathers
This grant funded two educational/recreational trips (to the Central Park Zoo and the New York Aquarium) for children and parents as part of the Fathers Count Family Program.

Yoga for Special Needs Preschoolers
Twenty-five students in FSW’s Prime Time program benefited from a year of weekly yoga classes. The classes were designed to help them self-regulate and remain “steady” throughout the school day, helping them achieve an optimal state for learning.

Enrichment Classes for Children of Incarcerated or Recently Released Fathers
Eight children received scholarships to attend enrichment classes with their fathers. The classes, offered by the City of Yonkers Department of Parks, Recreation & Conservation, included karate, tennis, cooking, crafts, theater and dance.

A Safe New Playground for Rochambeau School in White Plains
This grant went toward designing and building a safe, welcoming playground with state-of-the-art equipment, in partnership with KaBOOM!, a national nonprofit dedicated to saving play for America’s children. The playground has been continuously utilized by the 230 Head Start and Universal Pre-K students enrolled at FSW’s Rochambeau School site in White Plains, as well as the community at-large, who also enjoy the playground at other hours.

New Site for Social Stars After-School Respite Program
This grant allowed FSW to bring its successful Yonkers-based Social Stars Respite Program to additional deserving youth in Mount Vernon and New Rochelle.

Acquisition of Car Seats for Early Childhood Respite
This grant funded the acquisition of car seats, which has given the Early Childhood Respite social workers the ability to transport parents and their young children to various types of community and cultural activities that make everyone feel less isolated and more connected to their communities.

Mothers of Bedford Film Screening and Panel Discussion
This grant allowed FSW’s EMERGE program for incarcerated mothers to host a documentary film screening of “Mothers of Bedford,” followed by a panel discussion with the filmmaker, Jennifer McShane and industry professionals. The event helped raise awareness regarding the challenges of the re-entry process and how to help link mothers with mental health services and support in their communities.

Young Men’s Peer Group and Trip to Empower Leadership Sports & Adventure Center
Following the model of the Young Women’s Peer Group funded by the Junior Board, young men from families suffering from Severe Emotional Disturbance (SED) met biweekly with program coordinators to discuss teen issues, reproductive health and substance abuse prevention. The program culminated with a trip to Zip Line Canopy Tour at Empower Leadership Sports & Adventure Center in Middletown, CT.

The Youth Council Mentorship Project
This grant supported the creation of a mentorship program between junior and senior members of the Westchester Youth Council, which empowers Westchester youth to develop and exercise leadership skills through community service, advocacy and civic engagement. Junior and senior Youth Council members worked together to plan monthly activities which explored various youth issues, serving to increase the leadership capacity of both the mentors and the mentees.

Community Residence Residents Explored Washington D.C.
This grant funded a trip to Washington D.C. for eight male Community Residence residents and four staff during the spring of 2012. The goal was to provide the eight young men with a fun-filled, educational experience that wouldn’t ordinarily have been possible for them, given their histories of placement and emotional disturbance.

2 Fields Trips for the Social Stars After School Program
This grant funded two field trips for the Social Stars, an after school program for children who struggle with serious mental disorders. The field trips took the Social Stars to locations such as Queens Hall of Science, the Bronx Zoo and the New York Aquarium.

Klondike 9 Fishing Trip
This grant funded a trip for Community Residence residents to participate in a day fishing trip aboard the Klondike 9 charter boat. The were taught by seasoned fishermen, and had the chance to work as a team to catch and eat their own fish. The day provided an adventure that these youth had never previously been given the opportunity to experience!

Trip to Bounce! Trampoline Sports for Social Stars
Funded a field trip to Bounce! for Social Stars participants, providing a unique physical activity experience through fun workouts and games on trampolines.

Weekend at Camp Ramapo for Respite and Camp Success
This grant, in conjunction with other funding, went toward providing a weekend of education, life skills, and recreation through a therapeutic program provided by Ramapo for Children for children in FSW’s Respite and Camp Success programs who struggle with Serious Emotional Disturbances (SEDs).

The Camp Ramapo weekend provided these children with a respite from their day-to-day lives and an opportunity to enhance their growth and development through team-building similar children outdoors in the country of upstate New York. The children returned to their homes and communities having learned new coping skills, gained positive self-awareness and discovered hidden strengths.

2 Field Trips for Youth Forum (Transitional Youth Group)
This grant funded two trips for members of the Youth Forum, one to MoMA and one to a Rope and Climbing course. FSW’s Youth Forum is a program for Transitional Youth, ages 16-24, who have had varying experiences in the mental health, foster care and juvenile justice/corrections systems and who may also suffer from developmental delays.

Social Stars Visit to the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum
This grant funded the Social Stars After School Program for children with severe emotional disturbances (SEDs) for a field trip to the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum on a day. The opportunity was designed to help foster healthy peer relationships, socialization and exposure to a new world of magic, heroism and patriotic culture.

Young Women’s Peer Group and Trip to see “Bring It On: The Musical” on Broadway
This grant funded the creation of a Young Women’s Peer Group that met biweekly during Fall 2012 and culminated with a trip to Manhattan to see Bring It On: The Musical on Broadway. As part of the peer group the young women met with FSW program coordinators to discuss teen issues, reproductive health and substance abuse prevention. An incentive for attendance was a trip to see “Bring it On: The Musical,”  a show with positive messages about race relations, trust and self-acceptance.