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Heights Foundation Receives $10,000 Grant from Bank of America Charitable Foundation

Published: Nov 15, 2012 10:44 AM EST


Grant will support the Heights Center culinary program

Fort Myers, Florida (November 15, 2012) – The Heights Foundation received a $10,000 grant from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation to support the Heights Center culinary program.  The program will empower low-income adults to gain economic self-sufficiency through foodservice job training and social enterprise.

Once complete, the culinary center will be a 1,200 square foot commercial teaching kitchen, located within the Heights Center--a 14,000 square foot facility for education, opportunity, and enrichment in the Harlem Heights community. Trainees will receive progressive on-the-job and classroom training and support.

“At Bank of America, we focus on advancing economic opportunity in the communities we serve,” said Gerri Moll, Ft. Myers and Naples President for Bank of America.  “We are proud to partner with the Heights Foundation and create opportunities that lead to personal growth, independence, and ultimately economic vitality.”

“Our culinary program will allow individuals to learn and practice technical skills in an environment that fosters self-sufficiency, lifelong learning and personal growth,” said Julie Workman, Director of Programs and Community Relations at the Heights Center.  “The Bank of America Grant will allow us to partner with Catalyst Kitchens to provide training, certification and job readiness skills to 150 adults.”

In addition to the culinary program, the Heights Center provides holistic, family-centered support to promote self-sufficiency. The Foundation connects at-risk individuals with information, support, and assistance to participate in supportive educational, job development, and family stabilization resources. 

For more information about The Heights Foundation and The Heights Center please call 239.482.7706, email, or visit their website at 



About the Heights Foundation and the Heights Center

The Heights Center, supported by the Heights Foundation, is a place for Education, Opportunity, and Enrichment.  We work to build strong, self-sufficient families in the Harlem Heights neighborhood.  As a 501(c)3 grassroots organization, the Center’s mission is to promote family and community development, support education, health and wellness, and provide the benefits of enrichment, expressive and cultural arts.  The Heights Center is under construction and will be completed this December.

Harlem Heights was originally settled as a rural agricultural community.   Approximately 1,200 children live in a mixture of single-family homes and multi-family apartments. Demographically, the population is approximately 55% Hispanic, 36% African-American, and 9% Caucasian. The poverty rate for children in Harlem Heights is more than twice the county average, with family income 40% below the county average. Families are not able to easily access family support services located in downtown Fort Myers, and benefit greatly from programs located within the neighborhood.


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