CORE 2022 Highlights: Education & Workforce Development

As part of the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona’s (CFSA) historic 2022 CORE Grants round, several local nonprofit organizations working in education and workforce development received funding to maximize their impact and improve the quality of life in Southern Arizona.

CFSA believes education is the gateway to opportunity. Our Education and Workforce Development Impact Fund promotes academic success and educational opportunities through programs and scholarships to support diverse and economically disadvantaged students in our community. Learn more here.

2022 CORE Grantees: Education & Workforce Development

Adult Literacy Plus of Southwest Arizona is a full-time advocate for adult literacy in Southwest Arizona. As mentors, they change lives through outreach programs, adult basic education, ESL instruction, workplace preparation and training, and tutoring. Their program facilitates success within the family, workplace, and the community.

Jesse Figueroa, Adult Literacy Plus of Southwest Arizona, stated, “A CFSA CORE Grant means financial stability that increases our ability to respond when situations change, while making it easier to innovate and take risks.”

Amphitheater Public Schools Foundation, Inc. (Amphi Foundation) mission is to promote academic excellence through the expansion of resources that enrich the education, development and well-being of the students of the Amphitheater Public School District.

Leah Noreng, Amphi Foundation, shared, “The Amphi Foundation has experienced tremendous growth in recent years. We’re offering more programming, reaching more students and impacting more lives but we’re also exceeding staff capacity. This funding could not come at a better time! It’s an opportunity to invest in our team and our systems, to ensure that our organization has the resources to continue supporting our students and their educators for years to come!”

ScholarshipsA-Z provides resources and create spaces where youth learn about their worth as immigrants, how to share their story, and strategies to pay for higher education.

Carolina Silva, ScholarshipsA-Z, said, “Receiving a CFSA CORE grant means we will be able to invest in the leadership of young immigrant volunteers leading our work by compensating them for their labor and offering more professionalization opportunities. Ultimately, this grant will increase our organization’s capacity to facilitate partnerships, expand services and ultimately strengthen our sustainability as a growing non-profit.”

Sunnyside Foundation advances an intergenerational culture of learning by investing in projects rooted in courage, community, equity and imagination in Tucson’s southside.

Elizabeth Soltero, Sunnyside Foundation, shared, “Receiving the CFSA CORE Grant will help deepen and enhance Sunnyside Foundation’s support to Tucson’s southside families. With the support of the CFSA CORE Grant, Sunnyside Foundation will be able to utilize general operating support for our emergency relief work to provide basic necessities to 1,350 families.”

University of Arizona Foundation’s Community and School Garden Program connects students in public schools with Tucson’s 4,000-year agricultural legacy by planting, maintaining, and engaging in school gardens. Using gardens as dynamic educational tools, we help cultivate community, connect students with their local food system and use gardens as STEM learning labs.

Stacy Evans, UA Community School Garden Program, said, “Receiving the CFSA CORE grant means that the UA Community and School Garden Program has the opportunity to continue providing education and experiential learning through their Food Literacy Program. Culinary meal-kits, field trips to the Food Literacy Lab, and taste tests utilizing local produce will continue to build the foundation for K-12 students in the Tucson Unified School District to participate in their health and the health of those around them.”

The Tucson Regional Educator Collaborative (TREC) nine regional school districts, several charter schools, and 12 community organizations and governmental agencies to support the region’s teachers. TREC aims to leverage the resources found in the Southern Arizona region to support teachers in their professional goals. Goals of the collaborative include building professional development capacity, increasing teacher retention, and developing teacher leaders.

Jennifer Kinser-Traut, UA Foundation, Tucson Regional Education Collaborative, shared, “Receiving the CORE Grant from CFSA enables us to hire a grant and report writer. This role will become an integral part of our TREC team, as we seek to A) increase the funding we receive to continue support for working teachers and B) quantify the impact that TREC has on teacher development, satisfaction, and retention. As a relatively new but rapidly maturing initiative, being able to accurately self-reflect on our work and communicate our impact succinctly to stakeholders will be a huge asset for our mission.”