Attorney General Hardy Myers today announced the names of 13 Oregon recipients that will share $120,000 in Children's Education Grants for support of their programs that benefit and advance the education of children. A five-member advisory committee reviewed 140 applications from non-profit, charitable and governmental groups.
"The caliber of these winners and their programs is very impressive," Myers said. "The advisory committee did an outstanding job of selecting a group of worthwhile programs, giving special consideration to counties that have not received assistance in the past."
The grants were available, due to Oregon's participation in national, multi-state antitrust settlements in 1998 and 1999 totaling $50 million in cash and toys with national retailer Toys "R" Us and toy manufacturers Mattel, Hasbro and The Little Tikes Company. This resulted in Oregon receiving over a period of four years, toys worth more than $389,000 and approximately $150,000 in cash for children's programs.
For the last four years, settlement money distribution has included toys being delivered during the holiday seasons throughout the state. The 2000 holiday toy distribution included the additional awarding of $20,000 grants to the Oregon Children's Foundation S.M.A.R.T. program of Portland and Libri Foundation of Eugene. Today's awarding of Children's Educational Grants will end the disbursement of settlement agreement monies.
The settlements filed in 1998 and 1999 resolved a lawsuit filed in 1997 by the Attorneys General of 44 states alleging that the defendants conspired for more than 10 years to withhold popular toys from low margin warehouse clubs that undercut Toys "R" Us prices. As a result of these illegal agreements between the manufacturers and the retailer, warehouse clubs could not compete in price with Toys "R" Us and consumers paid more for the toys.
Myers' Advisory Grant Committee members included Betsy Earls of the Associated Oregon Industries, Courtney Vanderstek of the Oregon Education Association, Mark Wilk of the Oregon Legal Services, the Honorable Patricia Sullivan of the Malheur County Circuit Court, and Melanie Curtis of the Oregon Commission on Children and Families.
Recipients receiving Children's Educational Grants include:
Oregon Child Development Coalition, Wilsonville. The OCDC provides childcare and other services to seasonal and migrant farm worker families around the State of Oregon. OCDC will purchase 2,416 culturally appropriate books for 1,208 children in Marion, Polk, Wasco, Hood River, and Malheur counties.
Dayton Public Schools, Dayton. This school district serves approximately 1,000 students. The district plans to use the grant to enhance their science curriculum at all levels.
Columbia Gorge Arts in Education, Hood River. CGAE is dedicated to providing arts education opportunities to children and adults in Hood River, Wasco and Sherman counties. CGAE will use its grant to fund their current project entitled, "Paints and Brushes," which will provide each of the 18, K-8 grade schools with an "art box."
Oregon Center for Career Development, Portland. OCCD, located at Portland State University, provides a career development system for childcare providers or "practitioners." OCCD will provide a voluntary, low-cost credentialing system for practitioners.
Rotary Foundation of Klamath County, Klamath Falls. The Foundation is the charitable arm of the Klamath County Rotary Club. The Foundation will buy books for the "Klamath Cares, Klamath Reads" program, which provides a hardcover book for 950 first-graders.
Umpqua Community Action Network Head Start, Roseburg. The UCAN branch of Head Start will buy three, high-quality, hardcover books for each of the 330 children enrolled in their Head Start programs. The books will go home with the children to keep and use.
Oregon Region III Shelter Programs, Salem. Five different agencies, all of which run domestic violence shelter and hotline programs, will use the grant to buy books, videos, written materials and toys for children residing in the shelters. Those participating include the Mid-Valley Women's Crisis Service, My Sisters' Place, SABLE House, Henderson House and the Center Against Rape and Domestic Violence.
Ontario Middle School, Ontario. This school serves 600 students, grades 6 through 8, in Malheur County. Many of the district's students have limited English proficiency and many are poverty-stricken. OMS will pay for educational, after-school activities that will be of interest to the students and attract a higher attendance rate.
Community Action Team, Inc., St. Helens. CAT has been serving proverty-stricken residents of Columbia County since 1966. CAT collaborated with several of its community partners, including Head Start, Even Start, local area preschools, childcare centers and libraries to provide 50 "theme packs" of educational materials for children's use.
Family Building Blocks, Salem. FBB is a child-abuse prevention center that targets at-risk families in Marion and Polk counties. The center will purchase the Second Step curriculum and supporting materials for use in reducing the cycle of abuse in at-risk families.
Klamath Lake Child Abuse Response and Evaluation Services, Klamath Falls. CARES is a child abuse center that provides medical assessments for victims of sexual or physical abuse. CARE teamed up with the Klamath County YMCA to provide new school supplies to low-income children.
Heppner Daycare/Preschool, Heppner. The daycare/preschool is the only state licensed nonprofit childcare facility in South Morrow County. Childcare services are provided for children, ages six weeks to 12 years. The school will provide a new computer activity with a number of children's programs.
Oregon Parent Center, Wolf Creek. OPC operates a center with the mission of "empowering families with knowledge and information to improve the academic achievement of their children." OPC will purchase 1,250 books to be used in its "Reading Buddies" program.
Twelve of the recipients received $10,000 grants with a 13th grant being evenly divided between Heppner Daycare/Preschool and Oregon Parent Center.
Consumers may access more information on grant recipients and their programs online at www.doj.state.or.us. The Attorney General's consumer hotline may be reached at (503) 378-4320 (Salem area only), (503) 229-5576 (Portland area only) or toll-free at 1-877-877-9392.