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Posted on Feb 12, 2015

Microsoft lends a hand to 3 more local groups

The Quincy School District isn’t the only one feeling the generosity of Microsoft lately.

The following local organizations also recently received grant dollars from Microsoft:

— Serve Quincy Valley recently received a $5,000 donation for the Share the Warmth program. The money will be used to assist families in the George, Quincy and Ephrata areas with their electricity bills.

Of 35,547 Grant County PUD residential accounts, some 3,255 households meet federal low-income guidelines, according to the PUD and U.S. Census Bureau statistics. Since the contribution was given, the organization has helped a few single moms as well as families with a disabled family member, said Daniel Castillo, coordinator of Serve Quincy Valley.

“We are so grateful for this contribution from Microsoft,” Castillo said. “Serve Quincy Valley is a non-profit organization that depends on donations to operate. With this donation we will be able to help 20 families that would not receive assistance otherwise.”

The donation was requested by Grant PUD and Serve Quincy Valley and will be administered by Serve Quincy Valley. People must fill out paperwork and be interviewed by the organization to be considered for the Share the Warmth program.

— The Quincy Valley Library Foundation received a $3,000 contribution that was used to purchase child-scale furniture at the growing George Public Library.

The rural library has served the small town of about 720 people since 2012. When the library was expanded in 2014, it was in need of more children’s furniture to accommodate its expanded programming and space, said librarian Schiree Ybarra of the North Central Regional Library, which oversees both the Quincy and George library programs.

Microsoft in 2013 also provided funding for the Quincy Public Library’s children’s activities, Ybarra added. Both libraries “greatly appreciate” Microsoft’s support of the children’s library programs in the area, she said.

— The Quincy Senior Center received a $7,500 donation that will be used to purchase four Microsoft Surface tablet computers, as well as software and accessories. The computers will be used next month when the senior center, together with two high school seniors, puts on a computer class for the community, said Ruth Linscott, president of the senior center.

The class also will teach participants the ins and outs of using smartphones, the Internet and programs such as Skype, Linscott said.

“We are just so excited to be doing this,” she said.

Classes will be 10 a.m. to noon on March 7, March 14 and March 21.

The tablets then will be used by the center as it builds upon its plan to provide computer literacy classes to seniors and the community. The center aims to open the building up to visitors of all ages, Linscott said.


— By Jill FitzSimmons,