CHAPEL HILL — Two grants from neighbors in the Research Triangle Park will help the N.C. Botanical Garden continue a science program for pediatric patients at UNC Hospitals.
A $121,000 grant from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund will support three years of Healing and Hope Through Science. The program involves hands-on, curriculum-correlated activities aimed at developing enthusiasm and interest for science careers in children ages 4 through 18, as well as increasing children’s knowledge of science and science-processing skills.
“We are so grateful to the Burroughs Wellcome Fund,” said Katie Stoudemire, program coordinator for Healing and Hope through Science. “This grant means we can provide many more science enrichment activities for pediatric patients, continuing the work we’ve done since 2006.”
In addition, a $25,000 Ribbon of Hope grant from the N.C. GlaxoSmithKline Foundation will enable the Healing and Hope Through Science program to strengthen and support a partnership with N.C. State University’s College of Design, which will create a garden-on-wheels to be used at the Children’s Hospital.
Currently, hospitalized children do not have access to live plant materials because of infection-control restrictions. The grant will be used to design a new project that allows the children to interact with living plant materials.
“This generous grant gives us an opportunity to create a powerful therapeutic and educational tool,” Stoudemire said. “Kids will have an opportunity to nurture plants and seeds, which will help their own growth, healing and education."
The Burroughs Wellcome Fund Student Science Enrichment Program supports projects that improve students’ competence in science and mathematics, nurture students’ enthusiasm for science and mathematics, and interest students in pursuing careers in research or other science-related areas. It provides more than $3 million annually in support of creative science education activities for primary and secondary students in North Carolina.
Engaging children in science has been a focus of the Burroughs Wellcome Fund since it became an independent, private foundation in 1993. It is dedicated to advancing the biomedical sciences by supporting research and other scientific and educational activities.
Since 2008, the N.C. GlaxoSmithKline Foundation has awarded 86 grants to nonprofits across the state under the Ribbon of Hope program. As part of the grant, recipients also receive customized consulting services and technical assistance from the N.C. Center for Nonprofits. The goal of the Ribbon of Hope program is to have a positive impact on the lives of North Carolina’s citizens in each of the state’s 100 counties by supporting programs that further health, science and education in local communities.