Nine Upstate organizations receive Barbara Stone Foundation’s Community Innovation Grants to support programming for people with disabilities

May 16, 2023

The Barbara Stone Foundation, a non-profit organization focused on supporting visionary and creative programs and initiatives for individuals with disabilities, recently awarded nine Community Innovation Grants to Upstate non-profits. The Barbara Stone Foundation invests in innovative programs that directly support individuals with disabilities through their bi-annual Community Innovation Grants program.

The following nine non-profit organizations were presented with grants totaling nearly $32,000:

  • Applied Theatre Center – $5,000 grant to support a theatre program called Act It Out! for Greenville County Schools and YMCA’s RECESS participants.
  • Bridged – $3,000 grant to develop an online summer camp program for students with disabilities to help students maintain academic, social and behavioral gains over the summer months.
  • Carolina Dance Collaborative – $4,668 grant for a five-week Greenville County Schools Special Education Dance Residency.
  • Mary Sunshine House– $1,000 grant to support staff leading recreational programs for individuals living at a Mary Sunshine Home.
  • Meyer Center for Special Children – $1,000 grant to fund additional speech therapy services.
  • Project Hope – $1,500 grant for printing equipment for Project Hope Foundation’s shirt printing business and to expand job opportunities for individuals on the autism spectrum.
  • Thrive Upstate – $5,000 grant to continue a popular drumming program called DrumAbility for 35 individuals with disabilities who are served by Thrive Upstate.
  • Upstate-Carolina Adaptive Golf – $2,500 grant to support ambitious adaptive golf programming so that more individuals with disabilities and veterans have access to recreational programs.
  • The YMCA of Greenville – $7,500 grant for the Y’s RECESS (Recreation, Education, Community, Exercise, Social and Service) program, a signature program for post-high school adults with diverse abilities. The program focuses on learning about nutrition, fitness, social responsibility, community outreach, and independent living skills in adulthood.

“Project Hope has eight campuses across the Upstate and serves more than 250 clients ages two years old and into adulthood,” said Carrie Morningstar, Donor Development Coordinator of Project Hope Foundation “We are grateful and honored to be a recipient of a Barbara Stone Foundation’s Community Innovations Grant so we can continue to grow our shirt printing business, which provides individuals with autism meaningful employment opportunities.”

The 2023 Barbara Stone Foundation board members include Jimmy Kimbell, President, Michele Reeves, Vice President, Riku Oinonen, Treasurer, Amy Hallasy, Secretary, Dr. Lisa Castellani, Lee Sowell, Matthew Collins, Marion Elliott, Elizabeth Piper, Nick Skenteris, Brooke Schmidt, Harriet Pollitt Wallace, and the Honorable Nick Theodore, President Emeritus.

To learn more about Barbara Stone Foundation grants, visit The deadline to submit Fall grant applications is September 15, 2023. Details are online at For questions contact, Executive Director, Lara Ceisel at [email protected].


About The Barbara Stone Foundation

Since 1991, the Barbara Stone Foundation has provided funds to improve the quality of life for individuals with disabilities. The mission of the Barbara Stone Foundation is to raise funds to enhance the quality of life for citizens of Greenville County with developmental disabilities, head and spinal cord injuries, and autism. To learn more, visit or find the organization on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.