Founded in 1994 by Beverly Flynn, the Horicon Principal-Superintendent, and by Bala Burton, a Sea Rancher and Horicon Board member, the Redwood Coast Educational Foundation (RCEF) is in its twenty-fifth year. The mission of RCEF is “to provide for the enrichment of public education in the coastal communities from Fort Ross to Manchester." The organization completed the Articles of Incorporation, State of California in 1999 and received Sate tax exemption March 9, 2001. It received Section 501 (c) (3) Federal non-profit approval on April 16, 2003.
Currently, RCEF consists of 12 board members elected to serve a three-year term, with four members elected annually on a rotating basis. Many have served multiple terms and one is a founding member. Most have extensive experience with public schools.
RCEF exists to raise funds for its grants program. Monies raised are dispersed primarily through the Teacher Mini-Grant program, with occasional grants for special one-time needs, such as field trip funding for a particularly needy student, supporting students in regional science fairs, or entering a student film in a film festival.
The Mini-Grant program distributes the bulk of our money through annual competitive grant applications primarily by classroom teachers, but also sometimes by other school programs. Awards up to $500 each are granted yearly for ideas that enrich student learning, are creative, have impact beyond the classroom, and do not supplant district obligations. For example, one teacher applied for a telescope to offer monthly star gazing parties for parents and children. A second teacher purchased recorders for a music enrichment program. A third coordinated a jewelry workshop for students with the Mendocino Art Center.
Money is primarily raised through an annual appeal to the community and then distributed to the nine public schools on the South Coast. Other funds come from individuals and corporations.
In its first year RCEF distributed $770. To date RCEF has distributed $273,939 in 577 grants.
RCEF Board of Directors
Robyn Cota Cann