This list represents a sample of past projects funded and is not meant to be all inclusive.
North Florida School of Special Education: Barkin’ Biscuits (Jacksonville, FL) – 2017
Barkin’ Biscuits, a micro-enterprise training program, was created to provide a new avenue of vocational training for young adults with intellectual & physical disabilities. These individuals receive job coaching and support in making and selling dog biscuits, the revenue from which supports additional programming at the school. The program provides skills that may translate into compensated positions, and learned tasks help young adults broaden their job skills in a nurturing, focused environment.
AHEAD with Horses: Project New Surcingles (Shadow Hills, CA) – 2015
The Morris Family Foundation gave a grant to purchase the most important piece of equipment required to provide this outstanding therapy, besides the horse itself, which is the vaulting surcingle.
Harpeth Hall School: Laptop Initiative (Nashville, TN)
Seed money was provided to the school to purchase a laptop for each student’s school use. The program was originally piloted in two grades using grant funds. The pilot program was deemed a success; all students in all grades now use laptops in a fundamentally re-imagined 21st-century curriculum.
Harlem Children’s Zone: College Success Emergency Fund (New York, NY) – 2007
This distribution was awarded to the College Success Office of the Harlem Children’s Zone. A College Success Emergency Fund was established, enabling students—often the first in their families to attend college—to cover education-related costs, such as textbooks and application fees, that their families could not (and to which any scholarships did not extend). At the end of the first year, 98% of college freshmen from HCZ in four-year schools remained enrolled, due largely in part to assistance from the Emergency Fund.
Developmental Services of Northwest Kansas: Connecting Miles of Virtual Disconnect – 2016
Developmental Services of Northwest Kansas helps individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities from newborn to the elderly across 18 counties in Kansas. This large service area was in need of a technology upgrade that could allow distant locations to connect with one another to receive educational and medical training for staff who provide direct services. The support from the Morris Family Foundation has helped to get Google based conferencing equipment with live video streaming in three locations, which has innovated the way we train and educate staff, has connected more board members across the 18 counties, and has increased collaboration among staff to improve programs.
LEAD Public Schools: One to One Laptop Program (Nashville, TN) – 2015
LEAD Public Schools is a network of five public charter schools in Nashville, Tennessee that operates both “fresh start” schools and “zoned-enrollment” turnaround schools. From 5th through 12th grades, our schools serve predominately minority and low-income populations who are likely to be first-generation college attendees. Through funding from the Morris Family Foundation, we have been able to acquire additional technology in our ongoing effort to ensure a 1:1 laptop program across our network. This initiative has provided our students integrated on-line learning tools through their daily curriculum, which has enabled our students to work at their own pace, regardless of math or language proficiency, through an interactive, hands-on learning experience.
Martha O’Bryan Center: Work Ready for Youth Program (Nashville, TN) – 2010
The Work Ready for Youth program is an integrated, comprehensive initiative that gives Nashville’s most vulnerable youth pre-employment skills and places them in entry-level workplace positions. Helping youth form a positive pattern of work behavior insures greater success for them as adults, creating the foundation for a healthier neighborhood, a place where self-esteem and self-sufficiency prevail. This contributes to the organization’s mission to end intergenerational poverty in Nashville’s most distressed community.
St. George’s School: Sustainability Coordinator (Newport, RI) – 2008
Funds from a seed grant enabled St. George’s School to hire a sustainability coordinator to help the campus “go green.” Since that time, sustainability advances have made significant advances in preserving resources and creating a culture of conservation. Highlights to date include:
- All school stationery products use 100% recycled paper produced close to campus
- Dining Hall changes
- New dishwashing system and tray-less service save 500,000 gallons of water a year
- Used cooking oil transported to Newport Biodiesel
- Over 6 tons of compost used to grow vegetables
- Energy-efficient library renovation
Susan Gray School: Family Training Series (Nashville, TN) – 2009
The Susan Gray School is an inclusive preschool located in Nashville, Tennessee. Funds from this distribution were used to develop and implement a family training series designed to empower families of young children with disabilities with information and resources to help them prepare for their child’s future.