Schuster Day Awards $52,258 to local nonprofits!

March 15, 2018

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In 1998, William Schuster, founder of Warren Radio, established an endowment fund to annually benefit 13 of his favorite nonprofits. Since then, The Erie Community Foundation has grown his fund, and this year, these nonprofits will receive grants totaling $52,258. Schuster Day is an annual event honoring Bill’s generosity and celebrating the grants made to his specified nonprofits.

“Bill is a great example of what thoughtful estate planning can lead to,” said Mike Batchelor, president of The Erie Community Foundation. “Every year, his favorite nonprofits receive a percentage of the endowment he established with us 20 years ago.”

Nonprofit                                                                     2018 Grant

American Red Cross                              


Community Country Day School


Erie Art Museum


Erie Playhouse


Erie Zoological Society


Hospice of Erie


Humane Society of Northwestern PA


Junior Philharmonic


Lake Erie Ballet/Erie Civic Ballet


Stairways Behavioral Health


The Sight Center of NWPA


United Way of Erie County


Visiting Nurse Association


More specifically, the grants will be used as follows:

American Red Cross, which relies on volunteers for 95% of its workforce, will host an Appreciation Dinner to recognize them for their efforts and commitment, and purchase an outdoor tent for future special and mission events.

Community Country Day School, which relies heavily on canvases, clay, paints and brushes in its art classroom on a routine basis, will purchase ample supplies and a digital camera in order to involve the entire school in a collaborative project to be displayed at the School’s 50th Anniversary Celebration in April.

Erie Art Museum, in response to the results of its consulting firm, Inter-Mission,  and to carry out as many evaluation recommendations as possible, plans to utilize membership and patron surveys, as well as focus groups, to determine membership satisfaction with and cost benefits of existing programs, as well as identify new programs to meet community needs.

Erie Playhouse, while continuing its art outreach program in Erie Community Schools and for other underserved populations, will also provide scholarships to youths desiring to attend summer camps and yearly classes.

Erie Zoological Society, concentrating on the Kindergarten through 4th grade age group, will develop animal-themed “teaching trunks.”  The trunks, which will be lent to educators throughout Erie County, will include lesson plans, activity stations, books and other materials to supplement the educators’ curriculums.

Hospice of Erie, which desires to circulate its Medical Director’s packets to a wider range of physician’s offices and family practices, intends to create a new grief pamphlet to assist hospice families and benefit interested groups.

Humane Society of Northwest PA, whose mission is to provide shelter, care, adoption services and good homes for animals, desires to expand outpatient procedures and continue to provide emergency surgeries for shelter pets.

Junior Philharmonic, under the guidance of its new Music Director Jonathan Moser, plans to introduce three new initiatives, including a summer music camp, expanding the number of annual concerts, and adding an intermediate level orchestra for younger students.

Lake Erie Ballet/Erie Civic Ballet, presenting an opportunity to students in grades K – 5, will support its new outreach initiative, Diversity Dance Project, with Pfieffer-Burleigh Elementary School.  In a familiar neighborhood environment, students will be introduced to classical ballet, tap, jazz and contemporary dance styles, enjoy a nutritious after-school snack and receive homework help.

Stairways Behavioral Health, which through BLOOM Collaborative and BLOSSOM’S Clay Studio employs art as a means of creative expression, social connectivity and as a vehicle for learning new skills, will purchase program supplies and equipment for  ongoing  art classes at both studios.

The Sight Center of NWPA, which provides an after school and summer program for blind children, will reinforce the skills and experience necessary to cope with blindness in a sighted world.

United Way of Erie County, which annually presents the Tocqueville Award, will help offset the cost of a recognition event to honor an individual for his/her extraordinary, long-time volunteer service to our community.

Visiting Nurse Association, a leading home health and hospice care provider in Erie County, will support ongoing operations of the Association.