In The Media

Read the latest news to learn more about the Cornwall Foundation's involvement in the community.

Annual Appeal Letter, October 2014

Dear Cornwall Resident,

Following the principle “think globally, act locally,” the Cornwall Foundation makes grants exclusively to organizations based in Cornwall or which provide services to Cornwall residents. Contributions to the Cornwall Foundation are an efficient way to support these local organizations and services. Our volunteer directors are familiar with the community, its needs, and many of the people involved in meeting those needs, and we can evaluate grant applications with far less paperwork than would be required for a grant from a government agency or a large foundation.

All grant recipients must be recognized as nonprofit organizations by the Internal Revenue Service, must provide written applications detailing their financial needs and plans for using our grants, and certify that they do not discriminate based on race, religion, gender, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected by law. We require grant recipients to submit reports confirming that the money we give them is spent as intended.

Recent grants by the Cornwall Foundation included funding:

• To furnish an area for young teenagers at the Cornwall Library

For insurance and advertising for the West Cornwall farmers’ market

• For a new computer for the Chore Service

• To Fractured Atlas for the Next Festival of Emerging Artists, for a music education program at the Cornwall Consolidated School and a free concert at Music Mountain

• To Time Out Foundation, for providing wilderness-based therapeutic mentoring for Cornwall students.

Our website at has a complete list of past grants and our on-line grant application form.

Please help us continue to support these types of local community services by making a contribution, either by mailing a check in the enclosed envelope or by using a credit card at our website. Donations are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law, and are always confidential.

The Cornwall Foundation

Annual Appeal Letter, December 2012

Dear Friend and Cornwall Resident,

This year we are happy to announce and to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the Cornwall Foundation. Through the generosity of friends like you and a Board of thoughtful volunteers, the Foundation continues to strengthen its support to local non-profit organizations.

This year was not an easy one for many Cornwall residents. The combination of disruptive storms and the lingering effects of the economic downturn have continued to create hardships and funding difficulties for some of our fine organizations and institutions. In this environment, we have re-affirmed the validity of the Cornwall Foundation’s mission: to help support and expand the reach and effectiveness of charitable organizations that operate in, or for the benefit of Cornwall and its residents.

We are thrilled to announce that, thus far in 2012 the Cornwall Foundation has given grants to benefit the following seven non-profit organizations:

The Cornwall Chronicle, Cornwall Volunteer Fire Department, Greenwoods Counseling Referrals, Little Guild of St. Francis,
Upper Housatonic Valley Heritage Assoc. Bike Trail, Housatonic Youth Service Bureau, and the West Cornwall Improvement Association.

Whether the grant is for seed money to build on an idea or to fund an on-going project, the impact of grants from the Cornwall Foundation is more meaningful than ever. The Board of the Cornwall Foundation not only receives formal grant requests, but has been proactive in seeking out non-profit Cornwall organizations that may not have found us yet, but are in need of funding.

This past August, the Board was delighted to host a party in celebration of both donors and grant recipients, honoring all on a special evening that we hope you were able to attend. With a warm mid-summer breeze in the air, it was an occasion to highlight the many contributions citizens like you have made to the Cornwall Foundation, and the foundation, in turn, has spread throughout the town. With both donors and grant recipients in attendance, we heard from the representatives of several local non-profits regarding the practical difference the Cornwall Foundation grant made to their organization.

Please take a moment to become familiar with our new website at to find grant applications, or to learn more about the Cornwall Foundation. Consult our website or contact any of our dedicated Board Members to make a meaningful contribution that will benefit our beautiful town. Our goal is to continue to make grants to local organizations, while carefully structuring an endowment that will ensure a future of giving. We value and count on your support to do so, and ask that his year you consider a contribution that might include an annual gift by check or stock transfer, as well as a charitable bequest.

On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Cornwall Foundation and the hundreds of individuals and families who benefit from your generosity, I thank you for your continued support.

Andrea Geisser

Motherhouse Receives Grant 

October 2011

 The Cornwall-based non-profit organization Motherhouse has received a grant from The Cornwall Foundation, Inc. The grant will make it possible to write and implement a growth-oriented business plan with the help of Paul Thomas Schoenemann, of the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE).

 Motherhouse offers 3-hour weekend workshops in Old Style Life Skills (OSLS) such as caring for a family cow, raising chickens, keeping bees, pickling, canning and sewing. Community events sponsored by Motherhouse include contra dances, meditation, yoga and round singing.

 Motherhouse was founded in 2000 by Debra Tyler to foster the maternal instincts to nurture and protect. As the organization expands, it will add new programs - like a summer family farm camp - that cultivate patience, self-reliance, sustainability and kinship. For more information go to

A Letter Written By President Darilyn Woods

July 2011

Over the last year, the Cornwall Foundation, Inc. has continued its mission to give grants to not-for-profits that benefit Cornwall residents. Founded in 2002, we are a young foundation but have already made a mark in the community. Due to the generosity of all who give of their time and through donations, we have had the opportunity to give over 40 grants totaling more than $30,000. to organizations like the Cornwall Child Center, Chore Services, the Cornwall Library, the Food and Fuel Bank, Cornwall Housing Corporation and dozens more. The non-profits that benefit Cornwall residents are of vital importance to our town, our neighbors and ourselves. The Cornwall Foundation, Inc. is one of the many funding sources they depend on to stay viable, allowing a small village like Cornwall to thrive. One of our recent commitments was a matching grant of $1,000 to the Higher Order Writing (HOW) initiative of the Cornwall Consolidated School for the 2011-2012 year. In support of this grant it was written, "It is the mission of the Cornwall Foundation to enhance the quality of life in Cornwall, and to maintain it’s unique beauty and character. One of the ways we can help do this is to support the strong tradition of the arts, in its many forms, here in our town. A home and haven to writers, editors, publishers and illustrators, Cornwall has the ability to help create a new generation of these artists. Bringing the HOW program to Cornwall Consolidated School and supporting our children in the development of their writing skills from an early age is helping to do just that."

We encourage all Cornwallians to continue to give generously to local organizations and programs. Whether you give financial support or of your time, directly to your favorite organization or through the Cornwall Foundation, everyone benefits. Let your children know how you give! They will continue this great tradition.

Letter to the Editor, Printed in the Cornwall Chronicle

July 2011

I have just joined the Board of the Cornwall Foundation. After more than 35 years as a Cornwall "resident" that is I am still a weekender, I am happy to get to know better all the non-profit organizations that operate in Cornwall. This is because the mandate of the Foundation is to give grants to non-profits that will help to improve the lives of Cornwall residents. Last year the Foundation gave grants to entities like the Library, the Cornwall Child Center, HVA and several others. I am happy to be part of a similar effort this year. But the real question in my mind is: when I go to the Dump would I be viewed as a "real" resident now? Maybe in another 20 years?

Andrea Geisser

Annual Appeal Letter

December 2010

Dear Friends,

At this festive time of year, we hope that you are enjoying time with family and loved ones. As the New Year approaches, the board members of the Cornwall Foundation reflect upon what we have done to fulfill our mission to enhance the quality of life in Cornwall. In only seven years since the Foundation was established, our endowment has grown to over $175,000 with over 45 grants awarded to a broad spectrum of Cornwall organizations. These grants have allowed the Cornwall Consolidated School, the Fire Department, the Child Center, the Food and Fuel Bank, the Housing Corporation and others to undertake new projects and offer more services to the community than their budgets would have allowed.

We are proud of the support the Foundation has been able to give so far, but we want to do even better. As our endowment grows, we look forward to making a substantial impact in those important areas where funding may be insufficient. While continuing to respond to those organizations that request our help, we will make a concerted effort to identify and reach out to non-profit groups that assist Cornwall residents particularly hard-hit in these economic times.

To accomplish this, we need your continued help and hope that you will consider making a generous donation to the Cornwall Foundation, Inc. this year. By supporting the Foundation, your gift will benefit Cornwall groups and organizations today and in the years to come.

Please take a moment to read through our enclosed brochure that highlights some of our more recent grants, and explains a variety of ways in which you can contribute. We ask you to help spread the word of our grant program to area organizations who work benefits Cornwall residents and, one again, we would like to thank you for including the Cornwall Foundation, Inc. in your annual giving.

Thank you,

Darilyn F. Woods

Article for the Cornwall Chronicle written by Larry Zuckerman

December 2009

In mid-November, Howard Dean, chairman of the Helston Town Band, emailed the Cornwall Foundation inquiring whether we offer grants for the refurbishment of old buildings. We had contributed to the renovation of the Historical Society, but who exactly was Mr. Dean and what is the Helston Town Band? Nobody knew. It turned out that Mr. Dean (not the former presidential candidate) is from Helston, Cornwall, in the United Kingdom. He was in need of a large sum of money to refurbish the town band room there. We informed him that England is slightly out of the Foundation’s jurisdiction, but it is nice to know that our reputation is spreading internationally.
Indeed, the CF has good news to report. Thanks to generous contributions and a stock market rebound, its endowment has bounced back to $150,000, about where it was before the crash. On the Saturday following Thanksgiving we held our annual meeting, electing a new set of officers. Darilyn Woods is now president, taking over from Paul Baren.  Jim Fishman remains vice president while Stacey Marcin and Jon Old stepped in as treasurer and secretary, respectively. We also voted new grants to the Child Center and the Historical Society and a $2,000 grant to the town’s food and energy fund.

Though $150,000 may seem like a lot in these lean times, it pales in comparison to the multimillion-dollar assets of many other community foundations. However it allows the Foundation to give several grants a year, generally ranging from about $500 to $1,000. The Cornwall Foundation was established in 2003, but it’s asset base has substantially grown just in the last few years. Because of that growth, they have been able to distribute about $21,000 since inception. The more they receive in donations, the more they can give in grants to a variety of causes throughout the Cornwalls. The Cornwall Foundation would be a worthy addition to your Holiday giving list, and a way to remember the citizens of Cornwall through a bequest to the Foundation.

They will do the rest.

--Larry Zuckerman, outgoing secretary