RIOC Increases Funding Available for Community Oriented Nonprofits

Public Purpose Grant Applicants at Final Stage, Vying for 50% Larger Pot

Updated 4 weeks ago David Stone
MST&DA hosted the world premiere of Monkey King, a musical created by Jonathan and Kimbirdlee Fadner, featuring local talent.
MST&DA hosted the world premiere of Monkey King, a musical created by Jonathan and Kimbirdlee Fadner, featuring local talent.
Photo: Irina Island Images

Yesterday, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation announced schedules for a committee of Residents Association volunteers to oversee final interviews for this year's round of Public Purpose Grants.

RIOC sweetened the pot by 50% this year, allowing up to $150,000 in its budget to help nonprofits serving Roosevelt Island, in response to community pressure. Under the enabling law, the State agency is allowed to award up to 3% of its operating budget but has never come close to that figure.

An average of ten organizations vie for RIOC's grants each year, and they represent a broad range of services, providing help for seniors as well as public school activities. Requests are funneled through RIOC for appropriateness before being handed off to the Common Council.

RIVAA joined forces with RIOC to organize Fall for Arts 2018.
RIVAA joined forces with RIOC to organize Fall for Arts 2018.
© David Stone / Roosevelt Island Daily

It's the Common Council committee's work to review the applications' value to the community and divide up the available cash as it sees fit. Recommendations are presented to the Common Council in whole for approval before being passed back to RIOC for final approval.

RIOC manages a year round practice of ensuring that all grants are used appropriately.

"The non-profit organizations will be making their presentations to the RIRA Public Purpose Funds Committee this Monday, October 22 at 7 p.m. and Thursday, October 25 at 7:30 p.m. at the Good Shepherd Community Center, 543 Main Street. These presentations are open to the public," RIOC announced.

The Carter Burden Network brought a new sewing program for seniors to Roosevelt Island.
The Carter Burden Network brought a new sewing program for seniors to Roosevelt Island.
© David Stone / Roosevelt Island Daily

Who's applying for Public Purpose Funds?

  • PS/Is 217's PTA leads off on Monday, followed by Life Frames (ecological learning); Open Space Institute, better known as iDig@Learn (children learn through plant life); Island Kids (enrichment programming and social support); and the Roosevelt Island Disabled Association.
  • Thursday's round starts with the Carter Burden Network, managers of the Roosevelt Island Senior Center's diverse programing and support. CBN is followed by the Roosevelt Island Historical Society where programs in community enrichment reach far and wide, including maintaining the Visitor Center; Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance (Classes and performances in all theatre arts); the Roosevelt Island Visual Art Association, an artist collective; and the Wildlife Freedom Foundation, which includes overseeing animal rescue, protection and adoption among its activities.
Anyone interested is welcome to attend the interviews and limited time is set aside for public questions.  
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