nameplate
From the left: Robert Keller, Executive Director and Drew Hershkowitz, President of the Community Chest. (Photo from the Community Chest of Port Washington)

Community Chest Announces Grants For Port Washington Non-Profits In 2024

The Community Chest of Port Washington (CCPW) announced the selection of 28 nonprofit organizations that were awarded grants in 2024. This year, the Community Chest gave out grants totaling $385,000.

The funded organizations provide a variety of services to Port Washington residents, including quality childcare, serving hot meals to seniors, teen mental health counseling, and programs that feed the hungry and care for the environment.

“We selected these deserving organizations for funding based on the continued impact and services they are providing to members of the Port Washington community,” said Michael Cooperman, co-chair of the Community Chest of Port Washington Budget and Allocations Committee. “We are proud to support these organizations, enabling them to provide these much-needed programs to the people of Port.”

According to a press release from the Community Chest, “The funding from the Community Chest enables local non-profits to provide vital programs such as Littig House Community Center’s tutorial assistance for pre-teens and teens to ensure they remain on-track for middle school promotion and high school graduation. In addition, the Community Chest funds scholarships for kids to participate in the Port Washington Soccer Club, Port Rowing, PYA, PAL and for childcare at the Children’s Center. The support from the Community Chest also enables the North Shore Child & Family Guidance Center to provide critical mental health services to Port Washington children and families.” Visit portchest.org/funded-organizations for the full list.

This year, the Community Chest has awarded grant funding for the first time to The Art Guild and Be The Rainbow, Inc.

“Both [nonprofits] have very interesting programming. And I think one of the great things about the Chest is our board and our grant committee members live here, so they know what’s going on and they are in touch with organizations that are important to the community,” said Bobby Keller, Community Chest Executive Director. “When we hear about an organization that’s looking for support we reach out, we begin a conversation and we put them through our grant evaluation process. They both did such a great job. We were thrilled at the opportunity to fund them.”


The Art Guild of Port Washington is dedicated to creating an inclusive and enriching home for visual arts education, exploration and exhibition. This grant from the community chest will go toward a new program that supports art education for children at the Littig House.

Executive Director of The Art Guild Lisa Grossman shared that when COVID started, more people realized how important art is to people and how there isn’t enough access to it, especially for children.

“[Children] get an hour or two a week in school and that’s it. And we’ve been trying to go out into the community and give it to different community members. We do art experiences with different community members and organizations,” said Grossman.
The Art Guild contacted the Littig House with the idea of bringing an art program to the children who attend the after-school program there. After working out the logistics, The Art Guild decided to send two dedicated art instructors to the Littig House to give art lessons to children.

“The instructors have a curriculum, and the idea is to teach them about artists who look like themselves,” said Grossman. “So many of the artists they have learned about are Black, Latino or Asian, so they see that anyone can be an artist. They split them up between the younger and the older kids and they go through an art lesson, and learn the style of these arts.”

The program began in the Fall of 2023 and the instructors are there from about 3 to 5:30 p.m. to ensure that each kid gets about an hour to attend the art class before being picked up. The Littig House’s after-school program has about 50 to 60 kids there at any time and the new program has seen about 40 kids participate in their classes so far.

“With the Community Chest grant, they’re paying for the instructors and all the supplies,” said Grossman. “In the beginning, we brought all of our supplies over there and brought them back. Now we were able to purchase over a thousand dollars worth of supplies that they can keep there all year and go back to work on their projects or do things independently.”

Visit theartguild.org for more information.

The other nonprofit receiving a Community Chest grant for the first time this year is Be The Rainbow, which focuses on bringing our community together to celebrate and support LGBTQ+ visibility, equality and pride.

“We feel so lucky and honored to be recognized by the Community Chest and to have received a 2024 Grant,” said Be The Rainbow. “The Community Chest’s motto is, “We are The People of Port Helping the People of Port.” This is also why Be The Rainbow was first created. We wanted to help make Port a welcoming and accepting town for its LGBTQ+ community. By being recognized by such an important pillar of Port, The Community Chest, it shows that Be The Rainbow and the LGBTQ+ community and allies are a valued part of this town.”

Be The Rainbow hosts the annual Pride Walk and Festival through Port Washington and is responsible for hanging the pride flags throughout Port during Pride month in June. They also host events and support groups for the LGBTQ+ community.

“The Community Chest grant will help fund our Annual Pride Walk and Festival. The walk takes place along Bay Walk Park and ends at The Bandshell,” said Be The Rainbow. “Hundreds of our residents come together decorated in rainbows to show their pride and support. Our festival gets bigger and better every year, and the grant will allow us to continue to grow and put on a spectacular event.”

This year, Be The Rainbow’s Pride Walk and Festival will be held on Saturday, June 15th at 1:00 p.m. Visit betherainbowinc.org for more information.

“It’s a special time for us,” said Keller. “We’re so excited about our 75th anniversary this year and this year we have given out the most grants we’ve ever done for the most money. So we’re very excited.”

For 2025 Community Chest funding, local non-profit organizations are encouraged to submit proposals no later than March 30. To support and learn more about the Community Chest call 516-767-2121 or visit www.portchest.org.

Just Getting Started

Kevin James Thornton’s super second act

By Amanda Olsen • May 10, 2024

THIS WEEK'S
SPECIAL SECTIONS

Dining guide-spring
UPCOMING EVENTS
  • No events