The playground at Most Holy Trinity School is more than 50 years old, but hopefully by this time next year the school will have a safe and upgraded playground, thanks to a $20,000 grant from the Catholic Community Foundation, Phoenix Catholic Leadership Circle.
The grant will not only help upgrade the playground, but pay for professional development for physical education, an outdoor hand-washing station, and programs to encourage exercise.
Most Holy Trinity is one of four CLC grant recipients. In its first year of giving grants, the CLC gave $60,000 in a ceremony at Mount Claret Retreat Center May 14.
“We were surprised with what we were able to do in the first year,” said CLC co-chair Janine Campo. “$60,000 is more than we anticipated.”
The Catholic Leadership Circle began as a brainstorm in 2013 as a way to invite younger Catholics to participate in philanthropy. The average age of the members is between 35 and 45, Campo said. Membership in the circle requires an annual $1,000 donation, and each family in the Circle is allowed to vote on what organizations receive grants. Members are accepted at any time, and the $1,000 gift can be paid in installments.
“It’s a group of young people working together to find solutions for this diocese,” said Campo. “I think this generation wants to become more involved in helping.”
Nonprofit organizations whose values align with Church teachings and primarily serve in the Diocese of Phoenix can apply for grants. In February, members of the Circle were able to meet applicants and ask questions about their programs.
“We not only hear from the organizations directly, but there are opportunities to be able to go directly to help that organization,” Campo said.
MacCleary expressed her gratitude for the CLC grant.
“As our enrollment grows, our needs grow,” she said. “We’re really grateful and excited because they see and understand our need and that is a blessing.”