News

Read about the John’s Island Foundation’s latest grants and grant recipients. Learn more about our donors and events. Check out how our work is being received in the community.

Learning Alliance bookmobile and kids posing with books

John's Island Foundation in the News

Vero Beach 32963 news logo
The 2020 John's Island Foundation board of directors

John’s Islanders’ generosity spreads far and wide

John’s Island residents have once again stepped up to the plate to support their less fortunate Indian River County neighbors, this time through the John’s Island Foundation. Through its annual appeal, the John’s Island Foundation has raised and distributed $903,563; granting $853,563 to 26 charitable agencies (10 of them in the $40,000 and up range) and providing $50,000 to the United Way of IRC COVID-19 Fund.

32963

May 7, 2020

by Mary Schenkel

Vero Beach magazine logo
Vero Beach magazine article title with photo of John's Island Foundation founder Ellie McCabe

Lifting Up Lives

It’s been 20 years since a hand- ful of John’s Island neighbors gathered around Ellie McCabe’s
dining room table, intent on forming a foundation that would fund the capital needs of agencies serving economically disadvantaged Indian River County residents. While other charitable organiza- tions were focused on programs and services, basic infrastructure needs were going unmet.

The philanthropic-minded founders were on a mission to change that. They consulted with an attorney, and, after dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s, filed the paperwork, hoping the newly formed John’s Island Foundation would make an impact.

Vero Beach Magazine

March 2020

by Ann Taylor

Vero Beach magazine logo
Screenshot of title page of Vero Beach magazine February 2014

Helping Out Where Help Is Needed Most

Fifteen years ago, five John’s Islanders gathered around Ellie McCabe’s dining room table to talk about forming a foundation. The idea behind it was to make grants to nonprofit agencies serving the basic human needs of Indian River County residents. The focus was to provide funds for capital improvements.

Vero Beach Magazine

February 2014

by Ann Taylor

The Oak Tree magazine logo over photo of beach with cabanas and people
Vero Beach magazine article title with photo of John's Island Foundation founder Ellie McCabe

20th Anniversary Reception

The John’s Island Foundation proudly celebrated its 20th Anniversary on January 27 in the JI Club Ballroom with over 350 loyal donors in attendance. The Foundation honored founder and first president Ellie McCabe by donating a special $50,000 grant to The Gifford Youth Achievement Center (GYAC) for their mental health and guidance counseling office.

The Oak Tree

March 2020

The Oak Tree magazine logo over photo of local art show
The Oak Tree John's Island Foundation article screenshot

Our Grants at Work

As we celebrate our 20th year of giving, the John’s Island Foundation wishes to express its gratitude to the many generous donors who allow us to achieve our mission of awarding grants for the capital needs of deserving non-profit agencies in Indian River County. We are dedicated to making lasting change in the lives of our less fortunate neighbors by focusing on things that are put to use everyday. Kitchen equipment, vans, playgrounds, and technology are among the items we have provided local non-profits. Eight grant review teams made up of 51 John’s Island members have begun visiting agencies and evaluating grant requests which will be awarded in the spring. We are proud to make an impact in our community.

The Oak Tree

February 2020

The Oak Tree magazine cover with logo over 1800s vintage image of John's Islanders
The Oak Tree John's Island Foundation article screenshot

ITALY CAME TO FLORIDA!

ITALY CAME TO FLORIDA! Leadership Circle members were treated to a festive wine-tasting reception on Nov. 13 in the JI Ballroom. The lively evening featured fine Tuscan wines provided by Banfi Vintners, donated by the ever-generous Mariani family, Floridian food specialties prepared by Chef John Farnsworth and his team, and breathtakingly beautiful flower displays created by Hutchinson’s Floral Artistry. Our Leadership Circle members are crucial to the fulfillment of our mission, and we are grateful for their continued generosity. A big thank you to our sponsors, JI Real Estate and Northern Trust, for supporting the event.

The Oak Tree

January 2020

The Oak Tree magazine cover with logo over image of Santa and Mrs. Claus holding children
The Oak Tree John's Island Foundation article screenshot

Happy Holidays to all!

Happy Holidays to all! ’Tis the season for giving, and the John’s Island Community is second to none in generosity. We would like to thank our many donors who support our mission to provide grants for capital needs for the nonprofit agencies that support the economically disadvantaged in Indian River County. Your generosity has allowed us to provide over
$11 million in grants over the past 20 years. Please help us continue our good work by supporting the Foundation. It’s easy! Return your pledge envelope or contact Emily Sherwood at sherwood06@gmail.com.

The Oak Tree

December 2019

Archive

SPOTLIGHT: INDIAN RIVER HEALTHY START COALITION

April 1, 2019

Johns Island Foundation

The John’s Island Foundation is proud to be a long-time supporter of Indian River Healthy Start Coalition, currently, the only agency in the county offering prenatal, childbirth, and new baby education. “We are basically the spot for mothers and babies,” states Executive Director Andrea Berry. “Our goal is to touch every mom at least three times – prenatally, at the hospital bedside, and through nurse visitation in the home following childbirth.” The Foundation recently supported Healthy Start with a remodeled community room that they use to provide educational training for their young mothers and hold meetings and conferences. We are justifiably proud of our role in helping to improve maternal health, birth outcomes, and early infant development in Indian River County!

WE THANK OUR DONORS!

March 1, 2019

Johns Island Foundation

In appreciation of our many generous donors who allow us to support the capital needs of Indian River County agencies serving those in need, the John’s Island Foundation held its annual Donor Reception on January 23rd in the JI Club Ballroom. Over 300 guests enjoyed cocktails and hors d’oeuvres as Foundation President Ken Wessel provided sincere thanks to our donors and showed a short video showcasing the Foundation’s support of Crossover Mission, one of 19 agencies to receive grant support last year.

Look Who’s Turning 20!

February 1, 2019

Johns Island Foundation

The John’s Island Foundation is fast approaching its 20th anniversary this May! Founded in 1999 by John’s Island residents Ellie McCabe, Don Macrae, and Jay McNamara, the Foundation was created specifically to make grants to fund the capital needs of local nonprofits, “which nobody was doing back then,” reflected Ellie McCabe, who stepped up to become the organization’s first President that year. The fledgling JI Foundation proved so successful that it was able to provide first-year grants in the amount of $278,270 to meet the bricks and mortar needs of 22 local agencies serving the economically disadvantaged! Two decades later, the Foundation is justifiably proud of its well-established role in supporting the capital needs of local agencies, a niche that seamlessly complements the work of the United Way and JI Community Service League, both of which fund operating and program expenses. We are enduringly grateful to the efforts of our many volunteers over the years who have served on our site review teams, rigorously evaluating all agencies who apply for grants, and to the outpouring of generosity from our John’s Island donors, who understand the importance of our work and respond so philanthropically.

WE ARE MAKING A DIFFERENCE!

January 1, 2019

Johns Island Foundation

Borne of a partnership between Gifford native and former gang member Antoine Jennings and MBA import-export entrepreneur Cathy De Schouwer, Crossover Mission reaches across cultural boundaries to offer at-risk youth one-to-one academic mentoring, academic support, and basketball training, redirecting them on a path toward successful adulthood. Since the John’s Island Foundation first provided grant support to the newly formed Crossover Mission in 2014, we have donated an array of capital equipment and resources to help this unique nonprofit to grow and thrive, from vans to transport students to computers and laptops to facilitate their learning.

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

December 1, 2018

Johns Island Foundation

As we enter the holiday season, all of us here at the John’s Island Foundation want to express our deepest gratitude to our many generous donors who so selflessly support the needy within Indian River County! Over 630 individuals and families in John’s Island continue to believe in our targeted mission of funding the long-term capital needs of local nonprofit agencies. Your support literally changes lives!

In 2017-18, we provided grants to 19 agencies that support basic human needs such as education, food, shelter, health care and assistance with disabilities.

We could not do this without you!

November 1, 2018

Johns Island Foundation

The John’s Island Foundation welcomes everyone back for another exciting season! Thanks to the spirit and generosity of our community, we are changing the lives of our neighbors in Indian River County by directly funding the long-term capital needs of local nonprofit agencies. With tremendous gratitude for the overwhelming support of John’s Island residents, we awarded $608,619 in grant monies to 19 agencies last year. Our capital grants funded a mobile classroom for a pre-k class, new flooring and building renovations for a homeless soup kitchen, low-income senior housing, and much more. Since our inception in 1999, the Foundation has contributed $10.5 million to the community!

Pleased to Support St. Francis Manor

April 1, 2018

Johns Island Foundation

JI member Dennis Longwell has proved that you can go home again. Formerly a board member of the JI Foundation where he served as Grant Review Chair and ultimately President from 2006-2008, Dennis has recently returned as a Site Review Team Captain, evaluating Striving for Success (providing laptops for a Gifford Middle School after school program) and St. Francis Manor (offering affordable, efficiency apartments for low-income seniors who are able to live independently). The St. Francis grant will help the center to build 18 new housing units, so critically needed because “the availability of such housing in our county is very limited, with long waiting lists before openings actually occur,” according to Dennis.

Generous Donors Filled the Ballroom

March 1, 2018

Johns Island Foundation

Thank you to our many generous donors who filled the John’s Island Golf Club ballroom on January 29th for our annual JI Foundation donor reception! As over 300 guests enjoyed cocktails and hors-d’oeuvres, Foundation President Ken Wessel explained the vital role the Foundation plays in supporting the capital needs of Indian River County agencies serving the disadvantaged. Guests also viewed an inspirational video about the Foundation’s support of the Wabasso School which is meeting the needs of special education students who are learning to live independently.

Our donors are an essential part of the JI Village!

February 2, 2018

Johns Island Foundation

It takes a village to provide caring philanthropy to meet the capital needs of agencies serving the disadvantaged in Indian River County. This year, the John’s Island Foundation is blessed to have a village comprised of nine site captains and 35 team members. These teams are currently visiting 23 local, nonprofit agencies to review grant requests totaling almost $800,000.

18 years of philanthropy

January 2, 2018

Johns Island Foundation

As we celebrate our 18th year of philanthropy, The John’s Island Foundation is thankful for the many generous donors who make it possible for us to achieve our mission of making grants for the capital needs of nonprofit agencies serving the disadvantaged in Indian River County.  Nine site review teams made up of 36 John’s Island members have already begun visiting agencies and evaluating our grant requests, so we are off and running!

We Want to Express Our Thanks and Gratitude

December 2, 2017

Johns Island Foundation

As we enter the holiday season, all of us here at the John’s Island Foundation want to express our thanks and gratitude to our many generous donors who have supported the needy in our community while creating lasting change for the future.

On November 8, Emily and Ned Sherwood opened their home to host a special Foundation reception, sponsored by Northern Trust, for Leadership Circle donors (those whose gifts were $5,000 or more).

Wabasso School R.E.A.L. Lab

November 14, 2017

Johns Island Foundation

The R.E.A.L. Lab at Wabasso School, which was funded by a grant from the John’s Island Foundation, was officially dedicated during a ceremony at the school November 14, 2017.

Directly Funding Long-term Capital Needs

November 1, 2017

Johns Island Foundation

We create lasting change. The John’s Island Foundation changes the lives of our neighbors in Indian River County by directly funding the long-term capital needs of over 20 deserving agencies in our community. Last year, we provided computer programs for seniors with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, equipped preschool classrooms with SMART boards, supplied housing for veterans, and so much more.

Be Part Of The Process

April 6, 2017

Johns Island Foundation

Although you may not be planning that far ahead, please give some thought to contributing a small amount of your time and talents by joining one of the John’s Island Foundation’s Site Review teams next year. In January, each team usually visits three charitable agencies in Indian River County who have requested a Foundation grant to meet their capital needs. This year we have scheduled team visits to twenty-eight of these agencies. The purpose of each visit is to evaluate the request and to report to the Foundation Board how much of the grant, if any, should be given.

Transforming Learning for Students at the wabasso school

March 1, 2017

Johns Island Foundation

This month we are reviewing requests from 27 non-profit organizations in Indian River County, totaling more than $850,00 to fund their various capital projects. Since we don’t have the funds to support all these requests, we will need to make some difficult choices. A final determination on funding decisions will be announced by the Board at the end of March.

Unique in its Mission to Provide Grants for Capital Improvement of Deserving Charities

February 1, 2017

Johns Island Foundation

This year there are twenty-seven non-profit organizations from Indian River County requesting funding from the John’s Island Foundation totaling $840,165. These requests are for a variety of capital needs and improvements. According to Jay Anglada, Grant Review Chair, site review teams are in the process of conducting comprehensive agency visits, determining which organizations will receive funding. There are nine teams consisting of a Captain and three to four team members. This year’s Captains are: Carol Critchell, Don Dussing, Rob Elliott, John Hessian, Lou Hoynes, Don Kittel, Julie Parker, Bill Saylor and Steve Trooboff. In order to get a complete understanding of how each non-profit serves the neediest of our population within our community, they will meet and visit with the leadership of the assigned organization and thoroughly review the appropriateness of each request in detail. Once completed, the teams will then present their recommendations to the John’s Island Foundation Board. If you would be interested in joining a site review team next year, please contact Jay Anglada or Jennifer Jones, Executive Director, at 772-234-0992.

The John’s Island Foundation Begins A
New Year Of Philanthropy

January 1, 2017

Johns Island Foundation

We are thankful for the many generous donors who make it possible to achieve the Foundation’s mission which is to make capital grants to non-profit organizations who serve the disadvantaged. To evaluate the agency needs and abilities, 9 site review teams made up of 36 John’s Island community members are now engaged in visiting and evaluating 25 agencies such as the Alzheimer/Parkinson Association, the Education Foundation and the Source. Need based requests for this year total more than $800,000 for capital items such as computer equipment, classroom furniture, cooking equipment, passenger vans and trucks, and building repairs. Capital grants address the infrastructure required to enable organizations to assist the individuals they serve. Our nine teams have the responsibility of evaluating the requests and presenting their recommendations to the JIF Board for action. Those who have served on site teams have graciously given their time and talents while experiencing the good feeling that comes from helping others. Please consider volunteering for one of these teams next year. call Jennifer Jones, Executive Director, at 772-234-0992.

We Would Like To Express Our Gratitude.

December 1, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

As the holiday season gets underway, The John’s Island Foundation would like to express our gratitude to all the donors in our community who have made our work possible. On December first, Foundation President Jim Johnson and his wife Sandy hosted a reception for Leadership Circle donors (those whose gifts were $5,000 or more). On January 30th, the Annual Donor Reception will be held at the Golf Club starting at 6pm. The reception is funded by our generous sponsors to date: The Hill Group; The Law Offices of John E. Moore, III; and Mercedes Benz, Porsche, Audi of Melbourne. All current donors (those who have contributed between 6/1/15 and 12/31/16 will be invited to attend.

Wabasso School Speak Up Program

November 1, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

2016 2017 Officers Announced

November 1, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

The John’s Island Foundation is proud to announce the officers for the 2016-2017 season. Each of these board members brings substantial experience and proven commitment to the Executive Committee.

Jim Johnson, President
Jim Poole, Vice President
Art Scutro, Treasurer
Carole Parks, Secretary
Ken Wessel, Development & Marketing Chairman
Jay Anglada, Grant Review Chairman

Many thanks to the preceding officers for their hard work and accomplishments over the past three years.

a generous outpouring of support!

May 2, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

The past fiscal year again proved the generosity of the members of the John’s Island Community.  The John’s Island Foundation received $733, 975 in contributions from 558 donors, compared with $686,600 from 546 donors the previous year. This represents a 6.9% increase in donations. To those who donated last year, please accept our most sincere thanks.

Join a Team

April 2, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

Although you may not be planning this far ahead, please give some thought to joining one of the John’s Island Foundation’s Site Review Teams next year. In January, each team usually visits three charitable agencies in Indian River County who have requested a grant for capital needs from the Foundation. The purpose of the visit is to evaluate the request and report to the Foundation Board how much of the grant, if any, should be given. You meet the principals of the charity and see firsthand what they do and who benefits from their work. It only takes a couple of hours for each visit. The John’s Island Foundation provides for only capital needs of charitable agencies in Indian River County and complements the work of the John’s Island Community Service League and United Way who provide funding for operations.

Review Process In Full Swing

March 2, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

This month we are reviewing requests from 26 non-profit organizations in Indian River County totaling $800,532 to fund their various capital projects. Since we don’t have the funds to support all these requests, we will need to make some hard choices this month. A final determination on funding decisions will be announced by the board on March 18th.

twenty-six organizations are requesting funding

February 2, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

This year there are twenty-six non-profit organizations from Indian River County requesting funding from the John’s Island Foundation totaling $800,532. These requests are for a variety of capital needs and improvements. According to Jay Anglada, Grant Review Chair, site review teams are in the process of conducting comprehensive agency visits, determining which organizations will receive funding. There are ten teams consisting of a Captain and three to four team members. This year’s Captains are: Judy Anglada, Jerry Babicka, Carol Critchell, Charlie Dill, Rob Elliott, Lou Hoynes, Jim Poole, Bill Sayler, Jim Smith and Steve Trooboff. In order to get a complete understanding of how each non-profit serves the needing population of our community, they will meet and visit with the leadership of the assigned organization and thoroughly review the appropriateness of each request in detail. Once completed, the teams will then present their recommendations to the John’s Island Foundation Board.

A great group of returning officers and directors

January 15, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

John’s Island Foundation (JIF) has begun its 16th year of philanthropy with a great group of returning officers and directors.

Consider Joining A Site Review Team

January 5, 2016

Johns Island Foundation

Ten teams made up of JIF board members and volunteers from the John’s Island community are now visiting 26 agencies to evaluate their requests of more than $800,000 to fund various capital projects. Some of the requests include: classroom furniture, and equipment, passenger vehicles and trucks, sports and fitness equipment, kitchen renovation and building repairs.

Two Unique Charitable Funders

December 2, 2015

Johns Island Foundation

The John’s Island Foundation is unique in that we provide funding to charitable agencies in Indian River County specifically for their capital needs: housing, cars and trucks, air conditioning, farm equipment, etc. We do not compete with the good work of the John’s Island Community Service League; instead, we complement their providing operating funds for many of the same agencies.

Leadership Circle

November 30, 2015

Johns Island Foundation

Beginning this year, The John’s Island Foundation has established a new category for giving designated the Leadership Circle, which gives special recognition to donors who have shown extraordinary generosity over the previous 12 months.

2015 2016 Officers Announced

November 30, 2015

Johns Island Foundation

The John’s Island Foundation is proud to announce new officers for the 2015/16 season. Each of these board members brings substantial experience and proven commitment to the Executive Committee.

Jim Johnson, President
Jim Poole, Vice President
Ken Wessel, Development Chairman
Carole Parks, Secretary
Art Scutro, Treasurer
Jay Anglada, Grants Chairman

Many thanks to the preceding officers for their hard work and accomplishments over the past two years.

Charitable Gifts

Yes, we (I) would like to support your effort. Enclosed is a check payable to John’s Island Foundation

Personal Check – Can be mailed to: 75 Remittance Drive Dept #92072 Chicago, IL 60675-2072

Securities – Contact Diana Brennan phone: 772.234.0992 for bank/transfer information.

John’s Island Club Account – Please use the form below

Open lock icon for login popup
Login to the Board Portal