Category: Press Releases

Foundation & Nonprofit Consortium Partners Host Community Information Session on Limetree

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, PRESIDENT
(TEL) 340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
November 5, 2019

St. Croix Foundation for Community Development in partnership with members of our Non-Profit Consortium, would like to extend an open invitation to the community to participate in an informal Community Information Session to share pertinent updates on the Limetree Bay Terminals & Refinery, scheduled for Tuesday, November 5, 2019 at the Great Hall of the University of the Virgin Islands, Albert A. Sheen Campus from 5:30pm – 7:00pm.

As a Trusted Neutral Community Convener, St. Croix Foundation has agreed to host what we hope will be the first of many Community Conversations, led by Community, for Community. The gathering will serve as an Information Session through which residents will have the opportunity to learn more about Limetree Bay Terminals & Refinery including updates on where it is in its restart process, get briefings on existing protocols for monitoring, reporting and emergency response to ensure the safe operation of the Refinery and the safety of the community and the environment.

This informal discussion is ultimately intended to establish an open dialogue between policymakers, regulators and the Refinery and the Community to cultivate a relationship of trust and transparency. But most importantly, it is intended to empower Community to lead important conversations that impact their neighborhoods, their well-being, and their economic interests- all essential components of Healthy Communities.

Invitations have been extended to regulatory agencies including DPNR and DOH as well as Emergency Responders like VITEMA. The Senate Committee on Government Operations, Consumer Affairs, Energy, Environment & Planning as well as Limetree Bay Terminals & Refinery Representatives have also been invited.

For more information about this upcoming community information session, please contact St. Croix Foundation directly at 340.773.9898.

St. Croix Foundation and ProTouch Cares Fund Open New Teacher Grant with Focus on Agriculture

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, PRESIDENT
(TEL) 340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
August 12, 201

St. CROIX, U.S. Virgin Islands – St. Croix Foundation is pleased to announce that the first cycle of the ProTouch Cares Agricultural Teacher Grant Award will open to all St. Croix elementary and junior high schools on St. Croix beginning August 15, 2019. The Foundation’s ProTouch Cares Agricultural Teacher Grant is specifically designed to expand opportunities for St. Croix teachers to provide targeted student enrichment opportunities around the critical economic and social importance of agriculture on St. Croix.

The ProTouch Cares Agricultural Teacher Grant is open to all public, private, and parochial elementary and junior high school teachers on the island of St. Croix. Successful applicants will demonstrate active student participation in developing the design and outcome(s) of their project, which should be relevant to their classroom curriculum and will allow students to experience the material they are learning in their textbooks in real-world terms. All projects will be thoughtfully considered by St. Croix Foundation’s Grants Review Committee; however, priority will be given to projects that (1) motivate and inspire both students and teachers, (2) provide students with a broad learning experience of the world around them through interactive learning, (3) enliven student creativity, and (4) have clear and measurable goals and methods for evaluation. The maximum amount for the ProTouch Cares Agricultural Grant is $1000. Teachers are encouraged to review the guidelines and prepare to apply using the Foundation’s online application portal at https://www.grantinterface.com/Home/Logon?urlkey=scf. Applications are due by September 16 and decisions will be announced by September 30.

The St. Croix Foundation’s Teacher Grant Award Program was originally established in 2000 with the ultimate goal of enhancing the classroom experience for public elementary students and their teachers. In the fall of 2018, the Foundation’s Teacher Grant was expanded through the generosity of the ProTouch Cares Donor Advised Fund to provide teachers with expanded resources to support hands-on learning around the importance of agriculture in isolated communities. According to Bryan Butler of ProTouch Communications, “We at ProTouch Communications are supportive and excited about the direction of agriculture within the community.  We hope that these grants will spark and ignite passion and enthusiasm in our youth about the science and industry of agriculture and how it impacts our community and the world.”

President of St. Croix Foundation, Deanna James, stated, “The ProTouch Cares Teacher Grant and the commitment of ProTouch Communications to support St. Croix teachers and youth is an example of active, hands-on philanthropy that the Foundation is nurturing throughout our direct services and strategic grantmaking. While the Territory continues to rebuild after the 2017 hurricanes, encouraging and providing opportunities to teachers and students to explore the world of agriculture is a path to resiliency and sustainability.”

St. Croix Foundation wishes to extend its sincerest appreciation to ProTouch Communications, who is giving back to the St. Croix community through targeted and relevant programming, and to our Grants Review Committee for their commitment and time. For more information, please visit the Foundation online or call at 340.773.9898.

SCF and AmeriCorps VISTA Partner for Nonprofit Capacity Building

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, PRESIDENT
(TEL) 340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
August 6, 2019

St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands – St. Croix Foundation has been awarded a $340,157 grant by the Corporation of National and Community Service to assign fifteen (15) AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers to support eight St. Croix nonprofits beginning in September 2019.

AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) is a national service program dedicated to “ending poverty by building the capacity of nonprofit organizations and public agencies.” In the aftermath of the 2017 Superstorms Irma and Maria, St. Croix Foundation conducted a survey on the status of nonprofits, who serve some of our most vulnerable residents, finding that 70% of nonprofits reported an increase in demand for their services while 64% were operating on a limited basis or not at all due to loss of funding, facility damages, and staff relocation. In response, St. Croix Foundation identified the AmeriCorps VISTA project as a strategy to build organizational capacity for nonprofits and began the comprehensive, year-long application process. With the application approved, a VISTA Volunteer Team will support the following organizations: Caribbean Center for Boys and Girls VI, St. Croix Landmarks Society, Virgin Islands Good Food Coalition, St. Croix Montessori, Clean Sweep Frederiksted, St. Croix Long Term Recovery Group, and Virgin Islands State Historic Preservation Office and St. Croix Foundation.  In total, St. Croix Foundation’s VISTA Project expects to directly benefit youth, historic preservation, food security, green spaces, and relief and recovery services.

As the first AmeriCorps VISTA Team in the territory in over 20 years, St. Croix Foundation is actively seeking to contract 15 local volunteers ages 21 and up who are interested in supporting nonprofits in outreach and development. VISTAs will contribute to the goals of the project by performing activities such as community outreach, program development, grant research, and website development. VISTA volunteers are expected to begin their full-time year of service on September 3, 2019. Each volunteer will receive a monthly living allowance, healthcare benefits, official VISTA gear, and professional development training. Upon completing the first year of service, VISTAs are eligible to receive either the Segal AmeriCorps Education Award or VISTA end-of-service cash stipend and one- year of noncompetitive eligibility for employment in the federal government. Interested volunteers are encouraged to apply at https://my.americorps.gov/mp/login.do and search Virgin Islands. Applications should be received by August 10, 2019.

President of the Foundation, Deanna James, stated, “St. Croix Foundation is dedicated to creating a cultural, educational, skill-enhancing experience for VISTA volunteers as they support nonprofits in outreach and development of resources for our community. As an example of our holistic approach to community, we are pleased to provide targeted opportunities for local residents to support our critical nonprofits.”

St. Croix Foundation extends its deepest appreciation to Allan Comp for his technical support for building the VISTA project as well as the CNCS AmeriCorps Office for their dedication capacity building in the territory.   For more information about St. Croix AmeriCorps VISTA Team, how to apply to be a volunteer, or how you can support VISTA volunteers, please contact St. Croix Foundation at 773-9898 to learn more.

SCF and AmeriCorps VISTA Partner for Nonprofit Capacity Building

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, PRESIDENT
(TEL) 340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
August 6, 2019

St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands – St. Croix Foundation has been awarded a $340,157 grant by the Corporation of National and Community Service to assign fifteen (15) AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers to support eight St. Croix nonprofits beginning in September 2019.

AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) is a national service program dedicated to “ending poverty by building the capacity of nonprofit organizations and public agencies.” In the aftermath of the 2017 Superstorms Irma and Maria, St. Croix Foundation conducted a survey on the status of nonprofits, who serve some of our most vulnerable residents, finding that 70% of nonprofits reported an increase in demand for their services while 64% were operating on a limited basis or not at all due to loss of funding, facility damages, and staff relocation. In response, St. Croix Foundation identified the AmeriCorps VISTA project as a strategy to build organizational capacity for nonprofits and began the comprehensive, year-long application process. With the application approved, a VISTA Volunteer Team will support the following organizations: Caribbean Center for Boys and Girls VI, St. Croix Landmarks Society, Virgin Islands Good Food Coalition, St. Croix Montessori, Clean Sweep Frederiksted, St. Croix Long Term Recovery Group, and Virgin Islands State Historic Preservation Office and St. Croix Foundation.  In total, St. Croix Foundation’s VISTA Project expects to directly benefit youth, historic preservation, food security, green spaces, and relief and recovery services.

As the first AmeriCorps VISTA Team in the territory in over 20 years, St. Croix Foundation is actively seeking to contract 15 local volunteers ages 21 and up who are interested in supporting nonprofits in outreach and development. VISTAs will contribute to the goals of the project by performing activities such as community outreach, program development, grant research, and website development. VISTA volunteers are expected to begin their full-time year of service on September 3, 2019. Each volunteer will receive a monthly living allowance, healthcare benefits, official VISTA gear, and professional development training. Upon completing the first year of service, VISTAs are eligible to receive either the Segal AmeriCorps Education Award or VISTA end-of-service cash stipend and one- year of noncompetitive eligibility for employment in the federal government. Interested volunteers are encouraged to apply at https://my.americorps.gov/mp/login.do and search Virgin Islands. Applications should be received by August 10, 2019.

President of the Foundation, Deanna James, stated, “St. Croix Foundation is dedicated to creating a cultural, educational, skill-enhancing experience for VISTA volunteers as they support nonprofits in outreach and development of resources for our community. As an example of our holistic approach to community, we are pleased to provide targeted opportunities for local residents to support our critical nonprofits.”

St. Croix Foundation extends its deepest appreciation to Allan Comp for his technical support for building the VISTA project as well as the CNCS AmeriCorps Office for their dedication capacity building in the territory.   For more information about St. Croix AmeriCorps VISTA Team, how to apply to be a volunteer, or how you can support VISTA volunteers, please contact St. Croix Foundation at 773-9898 to learn more.

St. Croix Foundation & the Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund Award $17,000 in Scholarships to St. Croix Students

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, PRESIDENT
(TEL) 340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
July 31, 2019

St. Croix – St. Croix Foundation is pleased to announce a total of $17,000 in scholarships awarded to five St. Croix graduates on Wednesday, July 31st at St. Croix Foundation’s headquarters in Sunday Market Square. Scholarships were made possible through the second annual cycle for the Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund and the Foundation’s DOVE Memorial Arts Scholarship Fund.

Two scholarships in the amount of $5,000 were awarded though the Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund, which was established to provide opportunities to youth who have met obstacles but persevered despite these challenges and see educational pursuits as a means to achieving the personal and professional success that can then be shared with the next generation. Awards were presented to the following students by Junior Gaspard and St. Croix Foundation:

  • LaMonique Berrios, Sam Houston State College, Major: Engineering
  • Jayla Norman, Saint Agnes College, Major: Nursing

An additional scholarship was awarded to Alayna Caraballo through the Giving the Dream Fund for attendance at School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Aimed at supporting students who have had to overcome obstacles to continue their education, particularly in the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria, students had to meet specific requirements that included being a graduate from a St. Croix public high school and junior high school, maintaining a GPA of 2.0 or higher, demonstrating financial need, and most importantly, submitting personal essays that spoke to the reality of their challenges and their journey to pursue their dreams. All recipients are required to submit reports to the Foundation.

A native of St. Croix and graduate of Central High School and John H. Woodson Junior High School himself, Gaspard and the rest of the Williams/Gaspard family wished to honor his grandparents in a meaningful way in the aftermath of the hurricanes of 2017.  It was deemed that launching a named scholarship fund would allow for a longer-lasting impact on the lives of students in the community and allow the lessons learned from his grandparents about resilience and perseverance to be passed on to the next generation of leaders.

Scholarship recipient Jayla Norman expressed her appreciation, stating that, “I am truly grateful to have been chosen by this prestigious foundation as a recipient for a Patrick & Amelia Williams Opportunity scholarship. The hard work that I have put in from my early years of education to now will continue so that awards such as this one are used effectively. I owe it all to God, my parents and godparents, close family and friends, and the great teachers and mentors that have blessed my mind and attitude throughout the years. I am forever grateful for opportunities like these that will help me to achieve great things and make the St. Croix Foundation, my community, and of course my parents proud.”

In 2018 St. Croix Foundation also awarded an additional $2,000 through its DOVE Memorial Arts Scholarship Fund (established in 2003) to support two students who received scholarships through the Williams Opportunity Fund: Mr. Joshua Parris is now in his second year studying Criminal Justice at the University of the Virgin Islands and Ms. Shauniqua Wells who is also in her second year at Monroe College pursuing a degree in the culinary arts.

According to St. Croix Foundation’s President, Deanna James, “This year is special for St. Croix Foundation. As part of our approach to holistic community development and strategic grantmaking, we made the decision to award two mini-grants to last year’s award recipients in demonstration of our commitment to supporting and sustaining our grantees through success.”

St. Croix Foundation extends its deepest appreciation to Junior Gaspard (and his family) for his partnership and philanthropic spirit as well as the Foundation’s Grants Review Committee for their engagement. The Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund welcomes gifts to allow for additional students to be provided the chance to pursue their education.

For more information about the Williams Opportunity Fund, and how you can support this special scholarship opportunity for our young people, please contact St. Croix Foundation at 773-9898 or visit our website at www.stxfoundation.org to learn more.

St. Croix Foundation Rebuilding with Resiliency: Launches Solar-Supported Community Center Project

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, PRESIDENT
(TEL)340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
June 28, 2019

ST. CROIX, U.S.V.I. – St. Croix Foundation is pleased to announce the launch of its Pilot Solar- Supported Community Center Project and workforce development initiative that will solarize several carefully selected community centers on St. Croix. The project, which was officially launched on Monday, June 21st will serve as a replicable model through which local youth will be trained in an effort to build a skilled local workforce of solar installers. Funded in partnership with the VI Department of Labor, the Center for Disaster Philanthropy, Global Giving, The Max and Victoria Dreyfus Foundation, Limetree Bay Terminals, and Diageo USVI and a number of other national philanthropic entities, the community centers that will be solarized include The Caribbean Center for the Boys and Girls, Flambouyant Gardens, Mon Bijou Community Center and USVI Soccer Association.

During the first phase of the Project, 10 students aged 18-24, who are currently enrolled in the 5-month National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) course will receive intense classroom instruction in NCCER Core Curriculum, Electrical Levels 1-4, and Solar PV Installation. Students will receive a stipend during the program in addition to uniforms and toolkits which they will be allowed to keep upon completion of the program. Once the participants have completed the classroom component of the program and have successfully passed each level of coursework, they will receive on-the-job training installing Solar Photovoltaic Systems on the 4 local community centers.

The chosen solar-powered community centers will ultimately serve as a neighborhood hub for individuals and families in walking proximity, to support them with critical needs in the aftermath of future natural (or manmade) disasters enabling residents to store medication that requires refrigeration, charge electronic devices, and use internet connection to communicate with family. Community centers can also serve as localized distribution sites from which aid and relief items can be stored and disseminated in the future. Equally important, this Project seeks to nurture a culture of resilience by empowering each nonprofit community center to achieve a reduction in utility costs, the savings from which can be reinvested in direct services that benefit the communities and vulnerable populations they serve.

According to St. Croix Foundation President, Deanna James, “As our community continues to recover from the 2017 hurricanes, this Solar-supported Workforce Development Program is a perfect representation of how the Foundation is advancing its recovery agenda and its commitment to holistic Community Development.”  The ripple impacts of this initiative are far-reaching, touching on every priority that the Foundation has established since the hurricanes, from energy independence, and nonprofit capacity building to workforce development and community self-sufficiency.”  “The Project is also a demonstration of the power of Civic Leadership in driving strategic public-private partnerships,” James continued.

The Foundation extends its sincere gratitude to all of its community partners for their support and collaboration in making this project a reality including the Department of Labor, Commissioner Gary Molloy and his Team on the Workforce Development Board, Sustainable System and Design International, Lions Den, and of course our instructors.

The Foundation also wishes to invite local solar installation companies to support this project by offering long-term employment opportunities to qualified participants upon successful attainment of NCCER certification in order to achieve the ultimate outcome of this venture, which is gainful employment for our skilled youth.

The Foundation invites media to meet our participants, Monday, July 8, 2019, from 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM at the St. Croix Foundation Headquarters located at 1023 Market St. Christiansted, VI 00820. For more information about how to support this and other St. Croix Foundation initiatives, please visit www.stxfoundation.org or contact the Foundation directly at 340.773.9898.

St. Croix Foundation Hosts Community-Building Activities with World Renowned Systems Change Agent

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, PRESIDENT
(TEL) 340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
JUNE 14, 2019

St. Croix – The St. Croix Foundation is pleased to announce that on June 20th and 21st, it will once again host Tuesday Ryan-Hart for a three-day community training grounded in systems change. Ms. Ryan-Hart is an internationally renowned systems change strategist who has worked with global organizations and stakeholders engaged in community building. Last summer, Ms. Ryan-Hart introduced local nonprofits and community stakeholders to a new concept of community engagement, entitled “The Art of Hosting,” to help build capacity in our community through conversations and training around high impact collaborations and leadership development. This summer, Ms. Ryan-Hart along with fellow practitioner, Kelly McGowan, will take a deeper dive into the concepts surrounding the Art of Hosting and provide fully-immersive trainings in the practice. Nonprofits in our community are invited to RSVP with Jonathan Williams at jwilliams@stxfoundation.org by Tuesday, June 18, 2019, for the trainings which will take place on Thursday & Friday, June 20th and 21st at the Company House Hotel Conference Room in historic downtown Christiansted. Ryan-Hart will be holding a closed workshop on June 19th.

The Art of Hosting supports dynamic and diverse community stakeholders in exploring and unpacking barriers to effective collaborations to include; acknowledging perceptions of where and how Power sits in a room; mutual agreements around shared work and shared values; how stakeholders Host themselves as Individual Leaders vs. Organizational Leaders in collaborative spaces;  and how to find balance between Chaos and Order in complex systems.

Today, the Foundation is acutely sensitized to the fact that Systemic Change in our Civic Sector (and in our community on a whole) must happen in order for our entire Territory to not only survive but to thrive. As such, the Foundation has committed to drilling down deeper.

Defined as, “a highly effective way of harnessing the collective wisdom and self-organizing capacity of groups based on the assumption that people give their energy and lend their resources to what matters most to them – in work as in life – the Art of Hosting blends a suite of powerful conversational processes to invite people to step in and take charge of the challenges facing them and their communities.”

According to St. Croix Foundation President, Deanna James: “Because many of those challenges are grounded in patterns of thinking; and patterns of practice that no longer serve the advancement and innovation of our Territory, changing some of our thought patterns and rooted inter-personal practices will require heavy lifting.”

“Over the course of the past year, the Foundation has been sponsoring convenings around the issues of civic leadership, collaboration, and community vision building. Ms. Ryan-Hart and Ms. McGowan’s engagement represent the deepening of our commitment to sustained capacity building in our civic sector.” James continued.

St. Croix Foundation extends its deepest appreciation to Tuesday Ryan-Hart, Kelly McGowan, and to St. Croix’s nonprofits who continue to provide vital services to our community while also moving the needle on entrenched social issues. Special thanks also goes out to the many corporate, foundation, and individual contributors who make St. Croix Foundation Nonprofit Consortium and CARE Fund possible.

For more information on the Foundation’s upcoming convenings, or to RSVP for attendance, please call the St. Croix Foundation at 340-773-9898 or email: jwilliams@stxfoundation.org.

St. Croix Opens Farm-Tienda Grant Application to Support Agribusiness Development and Recovery

The St. Croix Foundation, in partnership with The Coca Cola Company, announces the opening of the Farm-Tienda Grant Application.

The project supports the recovery and development of agribusiness on St. Croix by granting eligible farmers a durable and moveable “farm stand” for the expansion of their local business and to serve as community hubs in the face of future storms.

Read the full press release

Review application guidelines

Visit the online application portal

SCF OPENS SECOND CYCLE OF THE PATRICK AND AMELIA WILLIAMS OPPORTUNITY FUND

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
(TEL) 340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 1, 2019

ST. CROIX, U.S.V.I., April 1, 2019 — St. Croix Foundation is pleased to announce that the second cycle of the Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund for St. Croix youth opens April 1, 2019. Geared towards providing opportunities for St. Croix students to pursue their career goals through colleges or universities, scholarships not to exceed $5000 will be awarded to successful applicants. All applications will be reviewed on the basis of residency, school attendance, and GPA.

Graduates from a St. Croix public high school who have also attended a public junior high school and reside on St. Croix are eligible to apply. All applicants must provide proof of acceptance to an accredited college or university and must indicate and maintain a GPA of 2.0 or higher. Applications will be reviewed by the St. Croix Foundation Grants Review Committee and must be received no later than May 10.

The Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund was established in 2018 by Junior Gaspard, a native of St. Croix and graduate of Central High School and John H Woodson Junior High School, who wished to honor his grandparents, Patrick and Amelia Williams. The Williams’ hard work, determination, and resilience is a legacy that Junior Gaspard and his family are committed to passing down to further generations, providing opportunities for St. Croix youth to overcome any obstacle with strength and perseverance.

After visiting St. Croix post-Hurricane Maria and Irma, Gaspard wanted to do something that could have a long-term impact. Knowing the challenges high-school students face preparing for and getting resources for college in a post-hurricane environment, this seemed to be most impactful way to help. “I remember going to double sessions and doing homework by kerosene lantern after Hurricane Hugo,” said Gaspard. “If this helps a few students who can persevere to get and stay in college, it will be a success.” He has seen firsthand the drive and ability St. Croix youth and knows many of them just need the resources to seize the opportunity of higher education.

President of St. Croix Foundation, Deanna James, stated, “The Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund and the commitment of the Gaspard family to support St. Croix youth is an example of active, hands-on philanthropy that the Foundation is nurturing throughout our direct services and grantmaking. While the Territory continues to rebuild after the 2017 hurricanes, encouraging and providing opportunities to students is a critical piece of empowering our young people to become fully engaged in sound community development.”

In its first cycle, the Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund awarded three St. Croix students scholarships totaling over $10,000 to defray tuition expenses for awardees to attend Monroe College in New York, Houston Community College in Texas, and the University of the Virgin Islands. Today, the Gaspard family is building awareness and mobilizing community both on and off the island to increase opportunities and availability of resources for more local youth.

In reflection of the spirit of Patrick and Amelia Williams, the scholarship Fund also gives priority to young people who are involved in meaningful community service and who participate in extra-curricular activities. The Fund acknowledges the challenges that many young people face in becoming more involved in civics, however, and invites students to demonstrate in essays the reality of their socioeconomic issues to allow the Review Committee to better assess applications.

The Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund will provide up to two scholarships a year with all scholarship recipients required to report on their successes and challenges throughout the year. This process will ensure that the Fund continues to meet current needs and to provide students with additional support if needed. Applications are due by May 10 and applicants will be informed by decisions by June 1. The full application guidelines can be found on the Foundation’s website at www.stxfoundation.org. Applicants are encouraged to apply online; however, applications may also be mailed/delivered to St. Croix Foundation’s office at 1023 Market Street, Christiansted, VI 00820.

St. Croix Foundation wishes to extend its sincerest appreciation to Junior Gaspard, who is strategically giving back to the community and honoring those that provided him further opportunities that have led to his success! For more information about how to support the Patrick and Amelia Williams Opportunity Fund, please visit the Foundation online or call at 340.773.9898.

Foundation Hosts StoryCorps “Crucian Conversations” with 30 St. Croix Culture Bearers

CONTACT: DEANNA JAMES, PRESIDENT
(TEL)340.773.9898, (EMAIL) DJAMES@STXFOUNDATION.ORG
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
April 1, 2019

St. Croix Foundation for Community Development will be hosting StoryCorps, a national organization dedicated to the preservation of community voices and cultures representing diverse American experiences, from Monday April 1st through Wednesday April 3rd. Working in partnership with StoryCorps, the Foundation will engage 30 Crucian residents and cultural bearers to record and share conversations about resilience, about culture, and about the power of the human spirit through this legacy project entitled, “Crucian Conversations.”

During their visit StoryCorps will record 15 conversations between 30 participants who will share experiences of Caribbean identity and cultural heritage with local residents, including doctors, musicians, chefs, and community activists. Through each recording, St. Croix Foundation and StoryCorps seeks to bring further awareness to the diverse landscape of the Virgin Islands while honoring participants by preserving their stories as a part of the Crucian cultural history and fostering a deeper understanding of the unique social fabric of the St. Croix community.

Crucian Conversations will follow the StoryCorps model and consist of two people who know each other having an intimate 40-minute conversation. A trained StoryCorps facilitator will sit in the room during the interview. StoryCorps conversations are not rehearsed or read from notes and participants are encouraged to incorporate their own questions, while maintaining spontaneity and flexibility during conversations. By telling actual stories, these conversations will be an opportunity for participants to record the essence and vast array of the Crucian experience from their personal perspectives.

The genesis of Crucian Conversations first came about when the Urban Land Institute (ULI) visited St. Croix in (month and date) and St. Croix Foundation was invited to participate in interviews, meeting with artist Amie MacPhee and cultural anthropologist, Sandra Kulli, among other community development representatives from ULI. In subsequent months, Ms. Kulli and Ms. MacPhee collaborated with the Foundation and members of StoryCorps to make the project a reality. Through Storycorps’ close partnership with National Public Radio (NPR), some of the recorded conversations may be aired on NPR and, with permission, archived at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. The ultimate aim is to capture and amplify voices of everyday people least heard in the media.

The timing of Crucian Conversations was specifically designed by the Foundation and StoryCorps to coincide with the Foundation’s benefit, St. Croix Food & Wine Experience, to achieve the Foundation’s goal to celebrate the people, land and culture of St. Croix. This year’s annual event series, themed “Feel St. Croix,” and StoryCorps’ work will underscore the Foundation’s holistic approach to community development and rebuilding efforts in the aftermath of the 2017 hurricanes.

Crucian Conversations is made possible by a grant through Enterprise Community Partners and the Urban Land Institute which provided funding support and coordination. The Foundation wishes to extend its sincerest appreciation to the 30 culture bearers who have generously committed their time and stories to the process, to Sandra Kulli and Amie MacPhee, and to the team and facilitators of StoryCorps.

For more information about Crucian Conversations, StoryCorps, and the work of the Foundation, please contact St. Croix Foundation directly at 340.773.9898.

ABOUT STORYCORPS StoryCorps is an independent nonprofit whose mission is to preserve and share humanity’s stories in order to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world. Since 2003, StoryCorps has recorded and archived more than 70,000 conversations from more than 400,000 participants. Each conversation is preserved at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress with the participants’ permission.