LPEF grant-writing initiative bringing new funds to District

Students in the School District of La Crosse are benefiting from a range of opportunities – including family nights, classroom library books, choral risers, wireless microphones and adaptive sports equipment – due to a new fundraising effort by the La Crosse Public Education Foundation.

Since Spring 2018, LPEF has obtained outside private grant funding totaling more than $125,000 to support a variety of District projects.

Denise Vujnovich, a retired vice president for student development and success at Western Technical College, was hired in April 2018 as a part-time grants coordinator for LPEF. She works with teachers and administtrators to identify needs and seek out grant funding from a variety of local, regional and national sources.

Native American artist and singer-songwriter Bill Miller worked with students at Northside Elementary school, with part of his visit funded through a La Crosse Community Foundation June Kjome Fund grant obtained by LPEF. In one day, Miller worked with students to create a beautiful work of art for the school to hang as a reminder of his visit.

Through early October, Vujnovich has helped District staff obtain about 20 grants from various sources, totaling more than $125,000. Here is a partial list of grants received:

  • $36,657 total from the La Crosse Community Foundation and Rotary Works Foundation toward purchase of a portable wireless microphone system for theater arts. A $5,000 LPEF Gold Star Grant also was awarded for the system.
  • $28,788 from the Mayo Clinic Health System Inclusive Health and Recreation Funding for the purchase of 12 sport wheelchairs for the middle and high school unified PE classes.
  • $10,000 from the La Crosse Public Library Give-a-Gift partnership for 5th grade classroom libraries throughout the district.
  • $10,000 from the Cleary-Kumm Foundation to purchase fitness equipment for the Central High School athletic program.
  • $10,000 from the Cleary-Kumm Foundation for the purchase of performance risers at Lincoln Middle School.
  • $8,750 total over two years from the Fowler and Hammer Fund of the La Crosse Community Foundation and Rotary Works Foundation to fund Amity Interns at North Woods International Elementary School.
  • $7,500 from the Mary Grace Sieber Fund of the La Crosse Community Foundation toward buying two inclusive recumbent cardio trainers for students and community members who have chronic pain, disabilities or are rehabbing.
  • $5,000 from the Charles F. Mathy Fund of the La Crosse Community Foundation toward classroom libraries.
  • $3,000 from the Onalaska Sam’s Club and the Walmart Foundation for the Helping Readers program and Family Nights at Northside Elementary Coulee Montessori School.
  • $2,000 from the Marck Family Foundation for performance risers at Longfellow Middle School. Longfellow also received a $5,000 LPEF Gold Star Grant for risers.
  • $1,650 from the June Kjome Justice & Peace Fund of the La Crosse Community Foundation for the Teaching Through the Lens of Social Justice project. A $4,000 Gold Star Grant also went to the project.
  • $1,050 from the June Kjome Justice & Peace Fund of the La Crosse Community Foundation to bring Native American artist and performer Bill Miller to Northside Elementary to promote awareness of the contributions of the Native American culture with students and their families.

To discuss grant opportunities, contact Denise Vujnovich at 789-8954 or email: denise@lacrosseeducationfoundation.org