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Sandstone Trust has distributed nearly $20K in 5 years

Posted 4 March 2015 at 12:00 am

File photos by Tom Rivers – The Sandstone Trust provides some funding to Old Tyme Christmas celebration in Medina, which includes the Parade of Lights. The Medina Fire Department decorated its ladder truck for the parade last Nov. 29.

Press Release
Medina Sandstone Society

MEDINA – Medina area residents can be proud of their five years of support for the Sandstone Trust. The community endowment just completed its fifth year of making small grants to local programs, projects and organizations and the total in grants over the five-year period comes to nearly $20,000.

This was reported by Michael Zelazny, chairman of the grants committee, who distributed the most recent checks in January.

“Scores of worthy projects have been supported since 2010 and the grants have covered a wide range,” said Zelazny.

He said grants run from $200 to $600 or even $1,000 in unusual cases.

A grants committee approved funding in the latest round of grants for improvements to the veterans plot at Boxwood Cemetery, to the Medina Business Association for Old-Tyme Christmas, emergency dollars to fix porch damage at the Medina Historical Museum, dollars to The Arc of Orleans toward kitchen equipment for Camp Rainbow, support for Medina’s Civil War Re-Enactment in April, stone repair from frost damage at the Armory (“Y”), and continuation of student scholarships.

Over the past five years about 40 grants have been approved by a citizen selection committee which operates under Zelazny.

“Late each autumn we invite grant applications and even though the amounts given are small they are genuinely helpful to projects having a limited scope,” he said.

Zelazny gave a smattering of typical grants. Money for the local library to continue digitizing historic hometown newspapers, help to the local Historical Society for winterizing, help for the Parade of Lights in the village, dollars to the YMCA for stonework repairs and interior up-grading, help to the Orleans Renaissance Group in placing 11 historical plaques downtown for delight of tourists.

The Sandstone Trust provided some funds for the restoration of this wood frame chapel in the Millville Cemetery. The chapel has a Medina sandstone foundation. It was built into a hill and also served as a receiving vault and office.

The Trust has also provided funding to help in restoring a historic building at Millville Cemetery, support of yearly concerts through the Arts Council, help to Arc of Orleans for client trips and for Nutri-Fare, help to the Medina Business Association for installation of a downtown sound system, assistance to Orleans County Christian School, a Head-Start school on Ensign Avenue and family programs at Medina Junior High School, aid to Community Action for a literacy program, support to GCASA for a program called “Healthy Me” and to Hospice for its new Albion building.

When the Sandstone Trust was officially created in 2009, the society used an obsolete economic development fund which was inactive and in danger of being seized. A contract was written with the Community Foundation of Greater Buffalo for financial management, a practice given by CFGB to over 800 such endowments. That management has been trustworthy, according to Zelazny, and the original $18,000 in seed money has multiplied five-fold.

In addition to Zelazny’s grant committee, a group of officers from the board of the Sandstone Society oversees the general plan and it includes Craig C. Lacy, Margaret J. Schreck, David C. Schubel, Robert E. Waters and Timothy J. Moriarty.

The founders of the Trust have had some “high spots” of success over the five years. In the summer of 2010, with the aid of a downtown thermometer, the Trust took in $35,000 in six weeks.

Annual donations to the Medina Sandstone Trust can be made at any time to the society c/o Post Office Box 25, Medina. Gifts offer a total tax deduction.