02/20/12 Thursday afternoon Kailyn Weiss, President of BEAM (Bettering Every Aspect of Marshall County) and T.J. Mechling, Treasurer watched as Linda Yoder, Executive Director of the Marshall County Community Foundation signed a fund agreement for BEAM.
BEAM, a youth philanthropy group was spearheaded by Bruce Jennings and Stasha Dirrim along with the Board of Directors of the Marshall County Community Foundation. BEAM consists of students in grades 9 through 12 from Argos, Bremen, Culver, Grace Baptist, John Glenn, LaVille, Plymouth and Triton.
The fund was created with $50,000. Some of the money was interest money from the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship program and fundraisers the group has done since 2007. BEAM will use the endowment fund for annual granting purposed to support programs related to youth. The first grant is a Garden Grant. Fourth grade classes throughout Marshall County will apply for the grant funds to create classroom gardens. They expect to award four or five grants this year, which will allow them to meet their mission and give back to the community.
Members of BEAM have done projects throughout the county such as clean up of the Yellow River, cereal drive for food pantries, adopting families at Christmas, raking leaves, shoveling snow, and assisting with the Youth Leadership Marshall County program.