Arundel Habitat for Humanity has been awarded a $500,000 grant from the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, a contribution that is funding the construction of 10 houses in the Brooklyn and Curtis Bay sections of Baltimore.
The grant, announced last week, is going toward the nonprofit's $10 million capital campaign to build 80 houses in Anne Arundel County and Baltimore.
"Weinberg was one of the local foundations that stepped up," said Anne Rouse, deputy director of the Arundel Habitat group. The $500,000 grant spans five years, giving Arundel Habitat $100,000 each year.
The group usually builds about seven houses each year but in the past year built a record 12. By 2010, it hopes to build 20 houses each year.
The effort in Brooklyn and Curtis Bay is a partnership between the Arundel group and the Chesapeake Habitat organization in Baltimore County. In this roughly five-block area, they are also working to acquire and renovate 60 abandoned houses for low-income families from the community, relying on donations of cash, labor and materials. Habitat home recipients are also expected to work on the houses.
Rouse said the Weinberg grant is helping them meet their goals. On Saturday, two houses built with Weinberg investments will be dedicated.
"The value goes way beyond the dollars -- it's incalculable," she said.
More than 70 grants were awarded this year by the Weinberg Foundation, founded with the goal of achieving social justice for the Jewish community and society as a whole. The foundation has $2 billion in assets and distributes about $100 million annually to nonprofit organizations.
Inmates pick up roadside litter
Inmates at the Ordnance Road Correctional Center are being sent to pick up roadside litter every weekend, under an expansion of the program announced Friday by Anne Arundel County Executive John R. Leopold.
Yesterday staff from the Department of Detention Facilities began transporting four inmate work crews, consisting of up to four inmates each, to sites throughout the county.
This new weekend pickup will be in addition to the services that inmate crews perform during the week.
"Unsightly litter and illegal signage sprawled across our county roads and sidewalks is a nuisance and detracts from the quality of life," Leopold said.
Nuisance crimes, he added, can become a breeding ground of more serious crimes.
To the extent practicable, inmate crews will separate recyclables from trash.
In addition, two Ordnance Road Correctional Center inmates will be assigned to an Inspection and Permits inspector to remove illegal signs attached to poles or placed in the ground within the right-of-way.
Woman's Club gives four scholarships
The GFWC Woman's Club of Linthicum Heights has awarded $500 scholarships to four North County High School seniors.
Brian McCracken, Tabitha Boone, Brittany Sherbert and Chad Lucas were selected based on academic performance and community involvement. In addition, as the 2007 recipients of the club's outstanding boy and girl awards, McCracken and Boone will have their names engraved on the club's Outstanding Students Plaque at the school.
For their creative writing skills, Jessie Orton and Kayla Zinn of Brooklyn Park Middle School, along with Lindale Middle students Matthew Chamberlain and Alyssa Vance, received $100 bonds.
Dictionaries were presented to outstanding students at six elementary schools: North Glen, Cromwell, Hilltop, Overlook, Linthicum and Belle Grove.
The club's annual Adopt-A-Teacher Award went to Ellen Kerney at Overlook Elementary School.
The club's annual fundraisers provide the money for the annual education awards.