The Kansas Children’s Discovery Center has received a $7,942 grant from The Women's Fund. The grant supports STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) outreach education from KCDC. The grant will facilitate the purchase of portable STEAM tools for KCDC educators to bring to area schools, community centers and events. Outreach STEAM education furthers KCDC's goal of providing rich, diverse museum experiences for all children, including those with barriers to visiting KCDC.
In part, the Women's Fund grant will purchase a more portable Imagination Playground set. Imagination Playground blocks include bricks and cylinders, accented with chutes, channels and parts that suggest motion or connectivity. They inspire children to design their own inventions, environments and activities for child-directed free play.
Funds will also purchase Rigamajig building kits, a collection of durable wooden planks, wheels, pulleys, nuts, bolts, and rope that allows children to engineer simple machines. The kits promote playful cooperative learning and the development of problem-solving skills.
The grant is a part of the Women's Fund 2018 initiative to support STEAM education across the community. The Women's Fund website explains the organization is donor-advised fund of the Topeka Community Foundation designed to create a new pool of resources from women interested in becoming philanthropists through the power of collective giving. Its mission is to promote women’s leadership in philanthropy, increase charitable contributions and strengthen their value through collective giving, and encourage a new generation of philanthropists.
Grants were awarded at the annual Women's Fund Luncheon held on April 25 in Topeka. KCDC staff and board members attended the event with Imagination Playground blocks (pictured).