Norton County Community Foundation Awards $5,000 in July Grant Cycle

Norton, Kansas, July 2023 – Norton County Community Foundation (NCCF) awarded $5,000 in the July grant cycle. Funds were part of the Dane G. Hansen Community Grant Fund, which offers financial support to qualifying and deserving projects and programs in Northwest Kansas. Grant funds supported the following project:
  • Crayons for Classrooms received $5,000 for their “2023/2024 School Supplies” project.
Crayons for Classrooms is a group of community members, parents, grandparents, teachers, and school administration whose mission is to provide basic supplies for students attending school at USD 211. The group formed in 2022 and provided school supplies to every student at Eisenhower Elementary School.
USD 211 teachers provide the committee with a list of supplies needed for each child. The committee compiles the lists and places the order through the school district office during the summer. The committee aims to purchase as much locally as possible, which benefits Norton County businesses. In an effort to stretch every dollar, they also take advantage of the discounts and ability to order in bulk through the school’s resources. The committee then sorts the items and distributes them to the teachers/students at the open house prior to the new school year.
These grant funds, along with other various fundraising initiatives, have enabled Crayons for Classrooms to provide all of the supplies for EES students (except PE shoes, headphones, & book bags) and $25 of the tech fees for JH and HS students for the 2023-2024 school year.
The guidelines and application for the Hansen Community Grant can be found on NCCF’s website at Applications are due the last day of the month to be considered for the next month’s funding. For more information, please contact Bethany Shirk at 785.874.5106,, or visit the NCCF office at the Heaton Building in Downtown Norton, KS, located at 112 S. Kansas Street.
About Norton County Community Foundation
The Norton County Community Foundation was established in 1994 for the purpose of supporting local charitable activities in Norton County through endowments made to the foundation. Dedicated to serving today for tomorrow, to make our community a better place in which to live. Connect with the Norton County Community Foundation at
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Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2020 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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