AWS Foundation Awards $250,000 to Benefit Erskine Green Training Institute

AWS FoundationThe AWS Foundation has awarded a $250,000 grant to the Erskine Green Training Institute to be used for student scholarships, commissions to artists for artwork that will be displayed at the institute’s adjoining Courtyard Muncie at Horizon Convention Center, and research and data collection on the impact the training institute has on its graduates.

The Erskine Green Training Institute, scheduled to open in January, 2016 in Muncie, Indiana will provide vocational training to individuals with disabilities for jobs in the hotel, food service, and healthcare environments.

The mission of the AWS Foundation is to help children and adults with enduring intellectual, developmental and physical disabilities live as independently as possible, be included in the community and function at their highest potential.

Patti Hays, AWS Foundation Interim CEO said, “We’re pleased to award this grant to provide scholarships for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. This training offers real-life job skills that will help individuals compete in the job market and increase employment opportunities.”

“Having a job leads to higher self-esteem, an opportunity for independence, and greater community inclusion.  For employers, studies show there are business benefits of employing people with intellectual and developmental disabilities as well. It’s a win for everyone involved,” Hays said.

Kim Dodson, The Arc of Indiana Foundation Executive Director said, “We are extremely grateful for the support of the AWS Foundation.  With their generous support, we will be able to offer scholarships to students to attend the Erskine Green Training Institute. In addition, the grant will provide commissions to artists with disabilities whose art work will grace rooms at the Courtyard Muncie at Horizon Convention Center.  And finally, thanks to their support, funding will be available for ongoing research and data collection to follow students after they leave the institute and enter the job market.”

“We are deeply honored by the AWS Foundation’s support of this truly unique venture that will change the lives of people with disabilities throughout Indiana,” Dodson concluded.

For more information about the AWS Foundation, please visit or contact 206-207-5728.

For more information about the Erskine Green Training Institute, please visit or contact 317-977-2375 or 800-382-9100.

White Orchid“White Orchid,” by Than Boutelle, Columbia City, Indiana, is one of the works of art
that will grace the Courtyard Muncie at Horizon Convention Center.