Walters Trust Grant Awards for the April 2021 Cycle

Out of 12 grant applicants, the Art Walters Grant funded 8 for a total of $48,000.00. The following are a sample of those grants.

An observation by the committee was that none of these grants were from UUCL congregants or committees. We hope in the future that individuals and committees of UUCL apply for grants. If you need help please reach out to any of the members of the Walters Grants Committee.

The Edible Classroom – Beth Horst. Awarded $6,770

The seed for The Edible Classroom was planted several years ago when founders, Grace Julian and Beth Horst, saw an opportunity for their respective elementary schools to create something beautiful from empty, unused pavement on school property. Both founding women are lovers of learning, gardening, and the outdoors. They saw the potential for underutilized blacktop to be repurposed into a productive learning environment.  

So Beth and Grace began bringing their dreams to life with the help of administration, staff, parents, and outside organizations. Years of volunteerism at their children’s schools solidified their love of using creative, hands-on education to engage children in the world around them.

Beth runs a summer program for school children in growing gardens. Students learn how to plant, care for, and eat their gardens. Recently highlighted in the LancasterNewspapers.

Diversifying Doulas Initiative. Cherise Hamblin. Doulas provide emotional support and education, to help women have memorable and empowering birthing experiences. Awarded $8,000.

Patients R Waiting is addressing the maternal mortality crisis by providing Lancaster Black and Latinx expectant moms with doula support. The health disparity experienced by women of color surrounding childbirth is heightened by COVID-19. Doulas can help to meet the emotional support needed by providing care and education, virtually and in person. The paucity of doulas of color in Lancaster is also being addressed by our doula training program.

Ambassadors for Hope, Supporting Children with Incarcerated Parents. Mary Glazier. This grant provides supplemental assistance to Family Services Advocate and expands the number of children who receive needed services. Awarded $5,000

Early intervention program for children who have an incarcerated parent. As soon as a parent enters Lancaster County Prison they contact the child and his/he caregiver. They provide whatever assistance is needed in living with the trauma of an arrested and incarcerated parent. We work with the schools and appropriate agencies to assure the child gets the best possible support during this time of uncertainty.

Saca’s Tec Centro. Carlos Grupera. Provide three scholarships to attend Tec Centros training programs in HVAC, Plumbing, Electrical etc. Awarded $10,500

Tec Centro is a multi-pronged services facility that is resolved to make an investment in the workforce development of the Latino community by nurturing a business model that integrates language, basic adult education, bilingual skills training, and job placement in a seamless system. Inaugurated on February 6, 2014, Tec Centro is a program under the umbrella of the Spanish American Civic Association (SACA).

Tec Centro collaborates with area community colleges and training programs to provide the skill training that will lead to careers in high-demand areas, including allied health occupations, construction trades, culinary arts, commercial and industrial building maintenance, and bank teller/customer service representatives. All participants receive career counseling and placement assistance. Graduates are placed in high-demand jobs and careers in our community, contributing to the economic well-being of Lancaster County.

Others include: Milagro House, Dana Myers awarded $8000; Arborplace, Derrick Burch awarded $5000; Welcome Mural Project, Lancaster City and Church World Services awarded $4000; Homeward Bound Delivery Service, Ephrata Public Library, Will Caverly, awarded $1000.

History of the Trust

It was all made possible by an endowment from the late Art and Selma Walters, longtime members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lancaster, who left the church $2 million for the Walters Trust upon his death in 2002, at the age of 94. Selma Walters died in 1992 at age 87.

Half the interest from the trust, up to $500,000, helps support the operation of the church. The rest of the interest is dedicated to grants, mostly for local nonprofits.

A recent exception was a grant for $15,000 to Chico Unitarian Universalist Church, in Paradise, California, for some of its members whose homes were destroyed in wild fires.

Kerekgyarto, a retired Millersville University professor who helped the school apply for grants, chaired the trust committee in 2016, when he saw the interest grow for more and bigger grants.

“We have quite a good nest egg now, he said.

Although Kerekgyarto didn’t know Walters personally, he describes him as “unique.”

“Art’s main priority was outreach to the community,” he said, which was based on the seven principles (see sidebar) of the Unitarian Universalist Association.

Walters was born in poverty, in a log house in Lansing, North Carolina. His father walked to work in West Virginia coal mines. His first business as a child was raising sheep and selling wool.

After graduating from high school, he worked at the Firestone Tire Co. in Akron, Ohio, and later in California. Eventually, he started a tire business in Lancaster, which evolved into a variety of other businesses, including automobile sales. In 1945, he helped found the Manheim Auto Auction.

Gene Homan, a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Lancaster, spoke at Walters’ memorial service.

“While Art had all the skills of a successful entrepreneur, I’d emphasize that the paramount attribute was his strong ethics and fair treatment of people. … He never was spoiled by his success and wealth — he remained an ordinary person. Art always identified with the underdog.”


Here’s how nonprofits can apply for a grant from the Walters Trust.

  • Access grant applications on the UUCL website. Download and complete the application and email it to
  • Be sure all requested information is included.
  • Make sure contact names and phone numbers are accurate and current.
  • Does the grant meet the purpose and mission of the UUCL
  • Include a narrative of how the project will be implemented.
  • Include a detailed budget. The grant does not support salaries.
  • Make sure the grant being submitted meets one of the four submission dates on time. They are March 15, June 15, Sept. 15 and Dec. 15.
  • The Walters Trust Program Committee requests a follow-up narrative report of the project funded and a brief budget summary.