CKCF Announces 2017 Charitable Grant Totals

Central Kansas Community Foundation (CKCF) announced their 2017 charitable grant totals. The charitable funds under their management support worldwide, state and local nonprofits in central Kansas, in turning hopes into realities.

  • 64 competitive grant cycle funds gave $382,984
  • 21 organizations & agency funds, gave $627, 212 (with one-time distribution of $500,000)
  • 76 designated funds gave $370,142
  • 27 donor advised funds gave $116,738
  • 50 scholarship funds gave $94,753
  • Charitable gift annuities gave $17,774
  • Grand total of grants given to charitable entities in 2017 = $1,609,605.45

CKCF’s mission is to Build Stronger Communities Through Charitable Giving. The projects/programs that were funded will open the future to many possibilities. Annually, more than a million dollars in community impact is provided in the following areas: Animal Welfare, Arts & Culture, Community Preservation & Revitalization, Emergency Disaster Needs, Health & Human Services, Science & Education, and other non-categorized areas, example being Operations.

Based in Newton, Kansas CKCF is a host foundation. They are a 501 (c) (3) not for profit organization with a Board of Directors. Serving in 2017-18 are Carrie Herman (Chairwoman), Tim Hodge (Immediate Past Chairman), Joel Gaeddert (Vice Chairman), Jennifer Vogts (Secretary), Todd Kasitz (Treasurer), Rod Kreie (Finance Committee Chairman), NM Patton, James Regier, Brad Bartel, Marge Warta, Linda Ogden, Dr. Colin Bailey, Linda Ewert, Amy Budde, Melvin Schadler, Delores Dalke, Jason High, Ron Lang, Jon Zerger, and Rachel Swartzendruber Miller. As a host the CKCF is the overarching governing board, however their affiliate foundations have local advisory boards that promote the local needs and interests of their mission and community.

Angie Tatro, Executive Director of CKCF said, “CKCF is dedicated to helping donors make a difference to causes that matter to them.”

Tatro went on to say that donors can be individuals, families or businesses.

“Donors are savvy these days, they have options for giving and we are delighted so many see the value in giving to and through the foundation to causes that are important to them.” she also shared. “Whether in life or as a bequest we are committed to managing the intent of our donors for the betterment of our Central Kansas Region.”


Brenda Sooter, CKCF Program Officer – Grants, sees firsthand the impact grants can have in meeting local needs.

“The rural communities served by CKCF and the affiliates are seeing the impact from grants made back into the community,” commented Sooter. “They are helping feed the hungry, educate our youth, offer recreation for health improvements, socialize our elders and so much more.”

For example, in 2017, Community Playschool, North Newton was funded for a “Healthy Eating: Fresh Whole Foods” project. With the funding Community Playschool could serve their children a variety of healthy fresh foods for their daily snack.

“Children love the fruit and vegetable snacks we serve, sometimes we have a hard time keeping enough around, the children choose fruit instead of crackers during snack time,” stated Director Jeanette Leary.

A grant was given to Main Street Ministries in Hillsboro to fund their “Food Bank” project. Director Mary Steketee was assisting a young woman and her baby who were new to the Hillsboro community, hoping to help her meet her food needs. As Mary assisted her, the young mother was thanking the staff for being willing to help when no one else could.

Stekette shared, “We get compliments all the time for great service, quality foods, and being so welcoming and non-judgmental.”

Another notable example of community impact can be found in the City of Peabody. Prior to 2017 funding, the Peabody swimming pool only had a picnic table for seating.  With the grant, 14 Adirondack chairs and nine chaise lounges were purchased, allowing a more comfortable and better place for children and families to relax.

Stories like these and so many more are what the foundation work is all about. Growing now to more than $22M in assets the Central Kansas Community Foundation has a mark in working with donors and charities on its future.

“Our growth can be viewed as a beam of light, casting a view for a bright future for generations to come,” said Tatro.

Community affiliates, currently hosted by CKCF with back office support and infrastructure as a nationally accredited community foundation, include; Augusta Community Foundation, Central Kansas Community Foundation -Butler,  Douglass Community Foundation, El Dorado Community Foundation, Elk County Community Foundation,  Florence Community Foundation, Fredonia Community Foundation,  Goessel Community Foundation, Halstead Community Foundation,  Hesston Community Foundation, Hillsboro Community Foundation,  Newton Community Foundation, North Newton Community Foundation, Peabody Community Foundation, Remington Area Community Foundation, and Valley Center Community Foundation.  CKCF is also host to non-community affiliate foundations: Franklin D. & Beverly J. Gaines Foundation, Second Century Library Foundation – Newton, Trinity Heights United Methodist Church Foundation, Walton Rural Life Center Charter School Foundation and the Women’s Community Foundation.

If you want to get involved or inquire about ways to give or receive, contact CKCF at 316-283-5474.


Central Kansas Community Foundation mission is “Building Stronger Communities Through Charitable Giving.” Founded in 1995 Central Kansas Community Foundation based in Newton, Kansas is an intermediary between donors and charities, the community foundation helps donors establish funds that financially support meaningful, charitable programs and services in their community. Central Kansas Community Foundation also host numerous affiliate community foundations throughout Central Kansas.

Tax Filing Season Opens Door to New Scam

As the tax filing season moves into high gear, tax scammers continue to develop new strategies.

In IR-2018-27, the Service explained the latest tax scam. Because it is difficult for IRS software to discover scams using actual taxpayer data, the tax scammers have developed a new concept.

The tax scammer starts by acquiring your normal tax return information — your name, Social Security Number, typical deductions, filing status and bank account numbers. In some cases, the tax scammer steals this information by hacking into your tax preparer’s computer network.

After stealing your information, the scammer files the return and claims a large refund. That refund is sent directly to your bank account.

To have a successful scam, the thief must then implement a creative plan to persuade you to send the refund to him or her. There are two basic ways the scammer will try to convince you to send him or her your refund.

First, the scammer contacts you and claims to be an IRS representative tasked to recover erroneous refunds. He or she demands that you send the money to his or her “refund recovery” account.

A second strategy is to use an automated phone call to threaten you with immediate arrest for criminal fraud because you received an improper refund. If you call the scammer’s number, he or she directs you to deposit the improper refund amount in a “recovery” account.

The IRS has specific procedures to follow if you receive a phony refund. You can contact your bank Automated Clearing House (ACH) and have the amount returned to the IRS.

If you have an amount returned to the IRS, you should call the Service at 800-829-1040 (Individual Returns) or 800-829-4933 (Business Returns). In your call, you will need to explain why the refund amount is being returned.

Published February 16, 2018

A Gift of Time Benefits Many

Front Row LtoR: Tammy Jackson, Marilyn Loganbill, Arlene Garrison, Judy Rittgers, Darla Wilken

Back Row LtoR: Valerie Garver, Natise Vogt, Jennifer Miles, Connie Rickard, Executive Director Respite Care;, Angie Tatro, Executive Director CKCF; Harlan Rittgers, Marge Warta, CKCF Board, Ron Lang, CKCF Board. 

Trinity Heights Respite Care accepted a grant check from Central Kansas Community Foundation (CKCF) during a board meeting October 17, 2017.

Trinity Heights Respite Care’s mission is to provide respite care to families in Harvey and Marion Counties who have special needs children, age birth through 16 years. Trinity Heights Respite Care is a ministry of Trinity Heights United Methodist Church.

The CKCF board had the opportunity to award designated grants from the Kansas Health Foundation – Newton Fund this Fall and awarded three special grants. Trinity Heights Respite Care was among them. “Over the years, CKCF has taken notice of the exceptional work Trinity Heights Respite Care is doing to care for the families and caregivers who have a loved one with special needs,” said Angie Tatro, Executive Director of the Foundation.

Trinity Heights Respite Care is a unique service that focuses on families of children with special needs.  Our service provides periods of relaxation to families to help them rejuvenate, attend to other responsibilities of daily living, and basically give a gift of time to the family.  “Respite care is a temporary rest from the daily challenge of caring for a family member who has special needs, a gift of time,” said Connie Rickard, Director of Trinity Heights Respite Care.

Regularly scheduled respite care allows the child with special needs opportunities to develop ongoing relationships and trust outside the family unit.  Additionally, respite care services, supporting the needs of these select families increases community awareness and acceptance of persons with special needs.  Overall these services are a life saver to families.  When parents/caretakers become stress, this effects the whole family, work, and their health. Richard went on to say, “Our service does more than just provide a short period of care.”

The program requires families pay part of the cost of care, based on a sliding scale. Grants like this one help off-set costs for the families utilizing services. Without the sliding scale, many families could not afford this valuable service.

The Newton community is rich with resources like Respite Care. If you need more information about local charities, please contact CKCF and ask for Brenda Sooter, Program Officer – Grants, at 316-283-5472.

PE Department Gets Grant for Monitors

The Sunset Elementary & Northridge Elementary Physical Education Department has received a $2300.00 grant from the Kansas Health Foundation-Newton Fund, funded through the Central Kansas Community Foundation. The funds will be used for individual heart rate monitors for students to use in physical education.

The PE department had previously hosted two events and received grants to assist in their efforts to raise the funds needed to purchase the monitors. With the  $7242.85 raised, roughly 250 students will benefit from the use of the heart rate monitors each year, while learning the importance of maintaining a health active lifestyle.

The heart rate monitor is a web based tracking and measurement system that uses a heart rate monitor that students will wear during PE class to help them better understand their own health. The student’s daily effort will be recorded, stored over time, and used to analyze the effectiveness of the activities. The data can also be delivered to both teacher and student as soon as class ends. The software provided will allow the teacher to track and correlate physical activity to academic performance and classroom behavior, develop student portfolios from K-12, document Fitnessgram results and attendance, and email daily heart rate activity directly to students and parent’s smart phones. With the purchase of the heart rate monitors, the district will own twenty-eight individual wrist heart rate monitors, a charging station, a classroom reader (transfer data device), and a three-year software license.

Jen Vogts, a committee member of the Central Kansas Community Foundation said it best. “We are excited to see your vision become a reality to incorporate heart rate monitors and the tracking software in PE classes!” This is truly a vision that our schools and community have rallied together to make this a reality for our students. With countless hours of planning, reaching out to the community, and writing on the part of PE staff, district students will now have to opportunity to start monitoring their heart rate throughout each physical education class.


Newton Schools PE Teacher, Mario Nava receives a check from Angie Tatro with the Central Kansas Community Foundation that will be used to purchase heart rate monitors for PE students in the district. 

Fredonia Area CF Grants $35,000 back to the Fredonia Community

On Saturday, September 16, 2017, the Fredonia Area Community Foundation held their annual “Appreciation and Awards Dinner” at Fredonia Junior / Senior High School.  The members of the advisory board of the Community Foundation recognized community members for their contributions to Fredonia and announced the 2017 grant winners.  The aim of the grant cycle is to support charitable organizations with projects or programs that directly impact communities across the Fredonia area.

The Fredonia Area Community Foundation was able to grant $35,000 during this competitive grant cycle!  This year’s recipients included the following:

Recipient and project

  • Fredonia Child Care Center – Relocation of the child care center
  • Fredonia Adopt A Family – Adopt a Family 2018
  • Shoes For Kids – Fredonia Shoes for Kids
  • Fredonia Regional Hospital – Ambulance Fund
  • Fredonia Public Library – Protect the Books Project
  • USD #484 School Health – Vital Sign machine
  • USD #484 – Composting Program
  • USD #484 – Greenhouse Program
  • Wilson County Health Department – Stroll and Read Family Night

Additionally, the Fredonia Seasonal Light Fund, the “I Am Fredonia campaign”, and an upcoming collaborative grant program with USD #484 were discussed as ways for community members to make tax-deductible gifts to benefit the community.

This is the third year that the Community Foundation has held a formal grant cycle and hopes to continue to give back to the community each year with the support of the Fredonia community.  Since its establishment in April 2012 as an affiliate of the Central Kansas Community Foundation, the Fredonia Area Community Foundation has distributed over $110,000 in local charitable grants.  Funding for these grants comes from donations, the Community Foundation’s annual Shamrockfest fundraising event held each year in March, and earnings and income from the Fredonia Area Community Impact Fund Endowment and Kansas Health Foundation Grow II Grant – Fredonia.  If you would like to contribute to the Impact Fund, you may send your tax deductible donation to P.O. Box 97, Fredonia, Kansas 66737.  You may also contact us at  You can find more information at .

GROW II Main Focus of CKCF Affiliate Summit

The impact of the GROW II matching grants has brought tremendous awareness and growth for those served by the Central Kansas Community Foundation (CKCF).  Building stronger communities through charitable giving was front and center at the recent annual Affiliate Summit this past week hosted at the Kansas Learning Center for Health, Halstead, Kansas.

The Kansas Health Foundation (KHF) GROW II matching grant program is about improving the lives of Kansans through both healthier people and stronger communities. It was designed to increase philanthropy in Kansas, to improve the health of Kansas children and to develop a network of local partners, including Foundations like CKCF.

CKCF Executive Director Angie Tatro reported the Foundation has grown from $8 Million under assets to $18.8 Million under assets since the award in 2011. She attributes the growth largely to the awareness generated from the matching grant opportunity.

Specifically, the CKCF and its affiliates, Halstead, Hesston, Peabody, Hillsboro and Butler County, raised more than $6 Million in eligible match during the grant, and Kansas Health Foundation then matched more than $1.7 Million for health initiatives in Kansas and Halstead still has a chance through the remainder of 2017 to meet their match.

Halstead Community Foundation was awarded in 2012 a $300,000 matching grant from KHF, to date they have approximately $120,000 in remaining matching opportunity. Tatro said, “Halstead is a community like all of ours that will benefit greatly by fulfilling this match opportunity.” In all participating GROW II communities a KHF Public Health Fund and a Foundation Operations Endowment are established by the matching funds.

Grant recipients are funding grants for playgrounds for kids to get exercise, better access to healthcare through clinics in rural areas and emergency kits with supplies for use by law enforcement during a crisis.

“Back in 2012 the Hesston EMT applied for a $250 grant to develop an emergency kit, complete with medical supplies, a tourniquet and keys to the school and other government buildings.” Susan Lamb, Hesston Community Foundation director shared. “During the Excel shooting February 25, 2016, the kit was employed and the tourniquet was used to save the life of at least one individual. This grant was funded through the KHF- Hesston Fund, established with matching funds.”

According to KHF President and CEO Steve Coen, GROW II has allowed the KHF to leverage more than $42 million across Kansas to meet the health needs of Kansans.

“When the Kansas Health Foundation started the Giving Resources to Our World (GROW) program in 1999, our goal was to help build the capacity of community foundations and encourage healthier communities,” said Coen.  “We are very proud of the Central Kansas Community Foundation (CKCF) and its affiliates who continue to grow their resources and help provide local grants for the unique, health needs of their residents.  We appreciate the generosity of individuals and families who give to the CKCF to support stronger, healthier communities across Kansas.”

If the health of Kansans is important to you, consider a donation to the Halstead Impact Fund, this fund will generate a 50% match, the highest available, for helping HCF meet their GROW II match opportunity. Please send your tax-deductible contribution to Halstead Community Foundation, P.O. Box 4, Halstead, KS 67056. If you have other interests for your charitable contributions, please contact CKCF at 316-283-5474 or

Pictured above L to R: Tim Hodge, CKCF Chair; Angie Tatro, CKCF Executive Director; JaLayna Carmichael, Halstead Director; Becky Nickel, Peabody Admin Assistant; Cynthia Fleming, Hillsboro Director; Susan Lamb, Hesston Director; Steve Coen, President and CEO Kansas Health Foundation.

About the Halstead Community Foundation (HCF)

The Halstead Community Foundation became an affiliate member of the Central Kansas Community Foundation in December 2010. Their mission is to enhance community well-being through expansion of educational opportunities, cultural enrichment, and improvement of human health and the physical environment. For more information please go to, .

About Central Kansas Community Foundation

Central Kansas Community Foundation mission is “Building Stronger Communities Through Charitable Giving.” Founded in 1995 Central Kansas Community Foundation based in Newton, Kansas is an intermediary between donors and charities, the community foundation helps donors establish funds that financially support meaningful, charitable programs and services in their community. Central Kansas Community Foundation also host numerous affiliate community foundations throughout Central Kansas.

Community Foundation Introduces New Funds

Read the Article on the Harvey County Independent 

Posted 8/17/2017

HALSTEAD—The Halstead Community Foundation has had a busy summer and is pleased to announce the addition of three new funds to benefit our community and schools.

The first, the USD 440 Endowment Fund, will be used to support the students, faculty and general district needs of USD 440.

“In the past, alumni have often contacted the district looking for ways to give back to the school that gave so much to them,” Superintendent Tom Alstrom said. “This fund will allow for an easy way to do that.”

A committee for the endowment fund will look at ways to enhance the school system, and together with the school board will fulfill needs or assist with projects otherwise not possible because of budget constraints.

The second, established with the Halstead Alumni Association, is the USD 440 Alumni Scholarship Fund. This scholarship aims to celebrate the tradition that many families share of having multiple generations of Dragons. Recipients must be graduating seniors who are the descendants of USD 440 Alumni, and they will have the opportunity to apply for this beginning in the spring.

Lastly, along with the family of Rex Fleetwood, the community foundation is proud to announce the Fleetwood Scholarship.  Fleetwood was a 1969 graduate of Halstead High School who loved debate class and math.  The Fleetwood family believes strongly in the support of education and that anyone should have a chance to take the next step, whether in college or trade school.

In setting up the fund, Donna, Rex’s wife, shared that even as he traveled around the world for business and pleasure, he never forgot his roots in Kansas and Halstead.  Rex’s sister, Ann Cuevas, said, “The family established this scholarship fund to give back to the community that helped us be successful in our own lives.”

Look for the Halstead Community Foundation at the Halstead Alumni Banquet on Saturday, Aug. 12, as well as at Riverside Park on Sunday, Aug. 13 when it will present this year’s grant recipients. To stay up to date on all the exciting opportunities from the Halstead Community Foundation, “like” us on Facebook.

For questions on these or any of our other funds, contact JaLayna Carmichael at 316-680-6271 or

Hesston Community Foundation Director

The quarter-time position for the director of the Hesston Community Foundation (HCF) is open.

Primary Responsibilities

Raising funds for the HCF endowment, managing grant opportunities and building relationships with grantees, engaging with HCF board of
directors and Hesston community and work as the liaison between HCF and host foundation-Central Kansas Community Foundation

Applicant must be a self-starter with strong written/oral communication skills and proficiency in the Microsoft Office Suite.


Please contact Angie Tatro at or call Central Kansas Community Foundation at 316-283-5474.