WVU initiatives receive $500K in grants from Benedum Foundation

The Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation recently awarded five grants to West Virginia University, through the WVU Foundation, totaling $540,000.

The grants will benefit various programs and initiatives at WVU and across the state including:

• Office of the Provost – $325,000 – The West Virginia Public Education Collaborative and the WVU Energy Institute will benefit from this grant, receiving $225,000 and $100,000, respectively. Over the course of a three-year project, the West Virginia Public Education Collaborative will hire an executive director, conduct oversight of pilot projects between different academic divisions of WVU and Pre-K12 schools, and manage other initiatives and studies in order to form educational partnerships and shape nonpartisan education policy. Funding for the WVU Energy Institute will be used for detailed research and analyzing efforts for the development of the Appalachian Storage Hub. The project will help plan the infrastructure underpinning of a natural gas liquid storage and trading hub, serving West Virginia, Ohio and Western Pennsylvania.

• Northern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center – $100,000 – Funding to the Strategic Teardown of Properties Brownfields, Abandoned, Dilapidated Buildings 2.0 initiative will leverage the work completed by BAD Buildings communities in the first phase of the project. A new Demolition Grant Fund will be used to demolish designated BAD Buildings properties in communities statewide.

• WVU School of Medicine – $90,000 – Funding will support Phase II of the West Virginia Coordinated Action, Response, Education and Support about Families Living with Dementia project. Phase I of the project previously received funding from the Benedum Foundation. Phase II will include the development of a website to connect patients and caregivers to resources in the state, partnering with the Alzheimer’s Association, AARP, and the Bureau of Senior Services, conducting training sessions with law enforcement officers and first responders, and working with the West Virginia Bankers Association to develop training and resources for banks related to signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. This initiative is the United States’ first statewide cross-sector collaborative whose goal is to improve quality of life for people living with dementia.

• WVU School of Public Health - $25,000 – Grant funding will benefit the Children’s Healthcare Coverage and Access project. The initiative will focus on the planning and creation of a traveling exhibit for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, a CHIP conference, the publication of a brief on children’s health policy issues and the drafting and distribution of a parent guide.

Over the past 60 years, The Benedum Foundation has awarded more than $35.1 million to projects directed by WVU faculty members to enhance the quality of life for West Virginians.

The Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation was established in 1944 by West Virginia native and oil and gas industry businessman Michael L. Benedum. The Benedum Foundation provides grant-funding to projects and initiatives throughout West Virginia and Pittsburgh, two places that Benedum and his wife Sarah called home during their lifetime together.

Through the Benedum Foundation, funds are made available to projects and programs in the areas of education, economic development, health and human services, community development and civic engagement.

The Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation gifts were made in conjunction with A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University. The fundraising effort by the WVU Foundation on behalf of the University runs through December.

July 18, 2017