Hadley receives $10,000 Grant from Lions Clubs International for Forsythe Center for Entrepreneurship
Last week, The Hadley School for the Blind received a $10,000 seed grant from the leadership of Lions Clubs International, based in Oakbrook, Ill. The funds will be used to further the development of the school’s new Forsythe Center for Entrepreneurship, which was developed to address the deplorable 70-80 percent un- and underemployment rate among people who are blind or visually impaired.
Officially launching in September 2011, the Forsythe Center for Entrepreneurship will provide individuals who are blind or visually impaired with the knowledge, resources and networking opportunities enabling them to advance in their careers or to successfully launch and grow their own businesses.
The gift was made during a visit by Lions leadership to the Hadley School. That meeting included representatives at the highest level of the Lions Clubs International organization, including the incoming president who is from China, where Hadley has a school serving more than 1,000 students each year.
“We are honored that leaders from Lions Clubs International were able to tour the Hadley School and learn about our latest initiatives, including our new focus on self-employment and entrepreneurship,” said Hadley President Chuck Young. “We are also pleased that Lions leadership recognized the important work that we are doing to support individuals who are visually impaired looking to start or grow their own businesses. It’s indicative of the important relationship we have had with Lions members.”
Hadley has had a longstanding relationship with Lions clubs in Illinois, dating back more than 70 years. In 1935, the Lions State of Illinois Convention adopted a resolution endorsing Hadley’s work and recommending that Lions clubs in the state assist the school and its students. Hadley was the beneficiary of a variety of fundraising projects by the Lions of Illinois Blind Activities Committee and continues to receive contributions from Lions clubs around the state. In 2003, Hadley and Lions Clubs International formalized a referral program whereby Lions members who recruited new students to Hadley were recognized by the two organizations. Hadley will be participating in the Lions Clubs International Convention in Seattle this summer.
Founded in 1920, The Hadley School for the Blind is the largest provider of distance education for people who are blind or visually impaired, their families and blindness service providers. Hadley serves 10,000 students over the age of 14 in more than 100 countries each year. The school relies on the contributions of individuals, corporations and foundations to fund its award-winning programs. For more information, visit www.hadley.edu.