The Rotary Club of Gonzales’ annual Stake in Education raised $14,000 for the Ascension Fund.

Stake in Education Coordinator and Rotarian Fritz Englade Jr. presented the donation to Ascension Fund Executive Director Jennifer deFrances during a recent meeting.

“The Gonzales Rotary Club has been a longtime supporter of the Ascension Fund,” Rotary President Tim Pujol said. “In fact, the Ascension Fund was established as a project of the Gonzales Rotary in 1991. Since then, the Gonzales Rotary has endeavored to provide ongoing support through fundraisers such as Stake in Education.”

In thanking Rotarians for the donation, deFrances said it is particularly needed and appreciated since the organization no longer receives the matching state funds that it once did.

Original pledges of $800,000 for the creation of the Ascension Fund were placed in an endowment, the income from which funds the grants. The Fund provided its first grant in 1992, and since that time has given more than 1,100 grants representing $1.25 million in awards to area public schools and teachers. The Ascension Fund is guided by a board of directors and the invested funds are overseen by the Baton Rouge Area Foundation.

The Fund operates two programs: Grants for Teachers fund grant proposals of $500 and $1,000 for teacher projects for individual classrooms; while School Impact Grants provide $2,500 for creative programs that have a schoolwide academic impact.