Celebrating 20 Years of Summer Enrichment

Swimming, music, math, field trips to The Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park in Atlanta and the Greensboro Civil Rights Museum, gardening, and building reading skills are all examples of activities that youth in grades kindergarten through ninth grade have enjoyed during Pigeon Community Multicultural Development Center’s Summer Enrichment Program, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this summer.

Located in Waynesville, NC, the Pigeon Community Multicultural Development Center (PCMDC) serves marginalized communities with afterschool programs, summer enrichment sessions, and as a gathering place for seniors. The center is in the former Pigeon Street School building, which served as the African-American elementary school in Haywood County from 1957 until desegregation in 1963.

WNC Bridge Foundation has awarded a three-year IMPACT capacity-building grant to the PCMDC to strengthen the organization’s fundraising capabilities. Pigeon Center used grant funds in its first year to hire a volunteer coordinator whose responsibilities include coordinating current volunteers and recruiting new volunteers for the non-profit. “Our organization runs on volunteer support; from church groups to individuals supporting us in many ways, we could not do our work without volunteers,” shares PMCDC’s executive director, Lin Forney. “Given the opportunity to organize our volunteers’ talents, track how they want to help and expand our outreach to the community, we see nothing but continued growth by having our volunteer coordinator as part of the PCMDC team.”

Grant funds from WNC Bridge also allowed Pigeon Center to invest in fundraising equipment, including the purchase of a large tent which the organization used at its Cinco de Mayo Fundraiser event. The non-profit also plans to rent its tent to other groups as a revenue generator. “The first year of our capacity-building grant from WNC Bridge has been a very exciting time for our organization; we have looked for ways to increase our fundraising capacity in the past, but until receiving this grant, we had not been able to fund this critical need, explains Forney. “We believe this capacity grant is giving us the tools to be successful in our work for years to come.”

Our IMPACT grant is allowing us to develop lasting fundraisers, build on current ideas, put long-awaited plans into action, and create new opportunities to provide our organization with more sustainability. ~ Lin Forney, Executive Director, Pigeon Center
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