Bona Vista has received an $80,000 grant through the Youth Program Resilience Fund of Lilly Endowment Inc. Bona Vista will use the grant to enhance the Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) program, which provides independent and employment preparatory services for students ages 14 to 22 in this program in the Kokomo community, including job exploration counseling and work-based learning experiences.
The goal is to repurpose programming space within Bona Vista’s facility to develop a Pre-ETS Training Center. This meets a community need to increase youth-based resources, while addressing the social, emotional, and vocational needs of local youth. The in-person service delivery that will occur at the Training Center prevents the loss of learning that may occur due to school closures within the special needs population. This new space will also allow students who have physical or developmental disabilities the opportunity to continue to receive one-on-one learning opportunities to build independence, increase community involvement, and promote self-advocacy.
In order to achieve this goal, Bona Vista will use the Lilly grant funds to make environmental improvements and safety enhancements to the Crossing building that will house the Pre-ETS Training Center. These renovations are necessary to accommodate the people that will be served by this program and will also expand the user base of the facility. With this support, Bona Vista will be able to continue its commitment to provide preparatory pre-employment training for the members of our workforce who have a physical or developmental disability.
The grant to Bona Vista is one of 297 that Lilly Endowment has made grants to through the Youth Program Resilience Fund to help youth-serving organizations across Indiana adapt their work to challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Grants from this fund are part of more than $170 million in grants Lilly Endowment has made to help organizations serve individuals and communities amid the pandemic.