Fifteen initiatives supporting the mental health and wellness of children are receiving $90,000 from The Opportunity Trust’s Reinvention By Community Fund.
Nonprofits and schools across St. Louis received grants of $5,000 and $10,000 at a May 12 awards reception at the Delmar Divine. The grants will fund efforts ranging from school-based behavioral telemedicine, to counseling at summer camp, to middle school sports programming.
“The past few years have taken a toll on children’s mental health, and we want to help organizations with innovative approaches expand their impact,” said Tanesia Simmons, a partner at The Opportunity Trust. “We are excited by the scope of these initiatives and that the funding will connect more children with support.”
The Reinvention By Community Fund was created in 2021. It is designed to give voice directly to individuals most impacted by inequity in St. Louis. This is the third time The Opportunity Trust has awarded Reinvention By Community grants. In April, a committee of seven parents and educators gathered to read through 29 grant applications and decide which projects and initiatives would receive funding.
“I am so glad Opportunity Trust chose to support our agency as we work to support our youth’s mental and emotional health through healing circles and restorative justice,” said LaChrisa Crenshaw, executive director of Youth and Family Center. “Our youth are witnessing a lot of traumatic events. We want to ensure there are best practices and healing tools in place to help encourage their resiliency as they grow and develop. We are truly grateful for The Opportunity Trust’s commitment, partnership, and support in our community.”
Members of the selection committee were Lyric Hill, Tambra Pendleton, Latifa Lewis, Joshua Clark, Nicole Pace, Krystal Barnett, and Steward Stiles III.
The committee selected the following organizations and projects to receive grants:
- Louis City League, middle school sports programming
- The Core Collective, early intervention therapy
- Youth and Family Center, healing and restorative justice circles
- Flourish Community Counseling, counseling service at summer camp
- Maplewood Richmond Heights School District, homegrown STL program
- Sissy’s Playhouse, Pre-K athletic and mindfulness equipment
- CHADS Coalition for Mental Health, family support counseling program
- Gateway Science Academy, indoor and outdoor sensory self-regulation spaces
- KIPP St. Louis, pharmacy-to-school partnership
- Girls in the Know, empowerment workshop
- Louis Children’s Hospital, school-based behavioral telemedicine
- One U City, connected caregiver community
- Link STL, movement, art and creativity program
- Behavioral Health Response Inc. (BHR), youth mental health first aid training
- The Sophia Project, coping kits