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Stoughton Area
Community Foundation

Stoughton, WI 53589
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The Stoughton Area Resource Team, Inc. (START) provides a safety net for those in crisis. Recently, a 30-year old single father of two struggled to find work, to pay for daycare for his children and to secure a home; so much time was spent homeless and hopeless.

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Host A Family

PO BOX 295

Phone: 6086588523
Contact Name: Kay Elmsley Weeden
Organization Profile
Grants Info
Its YOUR Day! Birthday Celebration Program - 2018 Amount Funded: $1,000.00
It’s hard for many of us to imagine celebrating a child’s birthday without a party or presents. But for many of the families we serve, finding the extra money to afford a child’s birthday celebration is a struggle at best, and frequently impossible. It’s YOUR Day! is a Host A Family project designed to help by providing the basics for a small birthday party, a gift, and a book. The local food pantries have agreed to distribute these packages on behalf of Host A Family, and since they see families in need on a monthly basis, and they also have criteria for determining eligibility for each family, this is a win-win proposition.
"Its YOUR Day! Birthday Celebration Program" People sign up to provide a complete birthday celebration package for a child in need. Packages include cake mix, frosting, a pan, candles, decorations, and other fun extras. In addition we want each child to have a new book (or used in good shape). The final element is a gift valued at $10-15. When someone signs up to make a package, they can choose the sex and age of the child and the gift and book included would be for that child. Our packages are being distributed at the Methodist Food Pantry in Stoughton. We opted to only supply one pantry since families can go to either and many go to both. We did not want to duplicate our efforts. The food pantry has criteria it uses to serves families and those are the families to whom these birthday packages are given if there is a child with a birthday that month. Because Host A Family is a non-profit organization, this is also a project that is a tax-deductible donation for those who contribute.

JUST STO STORIES - Stoughton Storytelling - 2018 Amount Funded: $1,550.00
The project’s purposes are to introduce the art of storytelling in a whole new light - and yet in an old and well-known but forgotten way. Currently when people hear “storytelling,” they often assume it’s a library storytime with someone reading books to them. But oral storytelling uses no books, few if any props, and the teller communicates and interacts directly with the audience. Each person mentally frames their own scenes, and each approaches the story listening from their own experiences. Due to the increased popularity in “The Moth Radio Hour” more people now understand personal storytelling, but this is only the tip of the iceberg. Stories are true and fictional, are healing and revealing, and they carry a message that makes each of us consider our own events in light of the story. This project will 1. Expose (and reintroduce) young and older alike to live storytelling and spoken word artists. 2. Encourage further use of storytelling in programming both in the schools and in the community. 3. Inspire people to find their own stories to tell. 4. Foster communication between people to move past adversity. 5. Help preserve culture and beliefs and share those with others.
Just Sto Stories project has several phases that I hope to achieve over several years. This first year, I plan to introduce great storytelling in the elementary schools by bringing in professional storytellers for performances Wednesday, November 14, 2018. Working with the literacy coaches in each school (Molly Grotenhuis, Sandhill; Jennifer Hopper, Kegonsa;Marilee Cronin, Fox Prairie), a different storyteller at each school would present three 45- minute programs to grade levels (3 or 4 classrooms) and the remainder of day in classrooms. These coaches are enthusiastic and willing to work with me to further storytelling in the curriculum. I am also working with Charlene Malueg, Volunteer and Program Coordinator at the Stoughton Senior Center, to offer a November 14 session with professional teller Andy Talley. Well known for historical character interpretation, his themes resonate with older listeners. In addition, Charlene and I are planning monthly storytelling sessions for seniors that I will offer and facilitate. In these sessions I will tell stories and also encourage seniors to tell their own tales. The second phase begins next year: Expand daytime TELLABRATION! activities to all schools, Senior Center and Library Continue monthly storytelling at the Senior Center Offer evening TELLABRATION! community event with student and local tellers, and professional talent. Introduce student storytelling programs in our schools. Elementary level - see and listen to live storytelling, then find and practice their own stories. Culminating event: showcase of young tellers. Collaborate with the SHS on program similar to "The Moth," but non-competitive nature. Culminating event: peer listening and recording stories. Include Livsreise as event space for Norwegian Heritage stories Continue discussions with Stoughton Opera House for professional story artist productions