Naples Children & Education Foundation Invests Over $20 Million

Naples Children & Education Foundation Invests Over $20 Million to Support Underprivileged and At-Risk Children and Future Generations in Collier County

Over 40 local, non-profit organizations receive NCEF grant funding for 2020-21

The Naples Children & Education Foundation (NCEF) has invested more than $20 million in 43 local nonprofit agencies that improve the physical, emotional and educational lives of children in Collier County. When factoring in program efficiencies and savings from the prior year, the full impact of the NCEF support reaches nearly $22.2 million.

This investment in future generations includes individual funding grants of $7.1 million, plus $15.1 million for seven multi-year strategic initiatives that fill fundamental gaps in children’s services.

“The 2020 Naples Winter Wine Festival was a record-breaking event with our largest attendance ever and generating the highest proceeds in our 20-year history,” said Joe Masterson, 2020 NCEF Grant Committee Chair. “We are proud that every dollar raised under the tent of our live auction goes right back into the community, improving the lives of the county’s most vulnerable children.”

This year, the number of agencies receiving annual grants totaled 33, plus 10 other agencies that help fill critical needs in the community by taking part in NCEF’s seven multi-partner, multi-year strategic initiatives focusing on the well-being of the whole child. These include early learning, healthcare, hunger, mental health, oral health, out-of-school time and vision. The “Fund the Future,” supporting all seven of these initiatives, brought in contributions of more than $5 million.

NCEF’s unique approach, which emphasizes collaboration between organizations and bridges public and private resources, has become a blueprint for how to transform a community, one issue at a time. Each NCEF beneficiary is fully vetted and many utilize that process as a “Good Housekeeping Stamp of Approval.” The Blueprint Partner program builds upon that process.

“Our Blueprint Partner program is an endorsement of those strategic initiative partners who are able to have the greatest impact by leveraging resources, creating systems, aligning protocols and eliminating duplication of services,” said NCEF Chief Executive Officer Maria Jimenez-Lara.

This year’s Wine Festival also enabled NCEF to allocate $1.8 million into a fund for future projects and strategic initiatives. This funding will ensure NCEF has an adequate amount of funding should there be a year of additional needs and support that are not covered by the Festival proceeds.


The following is the full list of NCEF 2020 beneficiaries:

Organization 2020-2021 Award
ABLE Academy $180,000
Avow Hospice $102,950
Better Together $150,000
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast $100,000
Boys & Girls Club of Collier County $502,950
Brighter Bites $200,000
Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation $135,000
Catholic Charities $286,600
Champions for Learning $141,450
Children’s Advocacy Center $657,735
Collier Child Care Resources $150,000
Conservancy of Southwest Florida $120,425
Friends of Foster Children Forever $402,950
Fun Time Early Childhood Academy $157,000
Gargiulo Education Center $125,000
Grace Place for Children and Families $410,000
Guadalupe Center $600,000
Leadership Collier Foundation $50,000
Legal Aid Service of Collier County $517,820
Literacy Volunteers of Collier County $60,000
Music Scores! $50,000
Naples Therapeutic Riding Center $227,950
One by One Leadership Foundation – Taste of Immokalee $62,950
PACE Center for Girls $59,000
Pathways Early Education Center of Immokalee $250,000
Safe & Healthy Children’s Coalition of Collier County $50,000
Special Olympics $85,250
St. Matthews House $100,000
The Shelter for Abused Women & Children $270,000
United Arts Council $50,000
Valerie’s House $102,950
YMCA of South Collier (formerly known as The Greater Marco Family YMCA) $400,000
Youth Haven $300,000
Total Traditional Grant Amount $7,057,980
Strategic Initiative Partners  
Early Learning Initiative

o   ABLE Academy

o   Early Learning Coalition of SWFL

o   Early Literacy & Learning Model (ELLM)

o   Redlands Christian Migrant Association (RCMA)



Healthcare Initiative

o   FSU College of Medicine – SSTRIDE Program

o   University of Florida Foundation – Pediatric Endocrinology Telemedicine Clinic




Hunger Initiative

o   Harry Chapin Food Bank of SWFL

o   Meals of Hope

Mental Health

o   David Lawrence Center

o   Florida State University Center for Child Stress & Health

o   Golisano Children’s Hospital

o   Healthcare Network of SWFL

o   NAMI Collier County




Oral Health

o   Healthcare Network of SWFL

o   University of Florida, College of Dentistry

Out-of-School Time

o   Boys & Girls Club of Collier County

o   Guadalupe Center

o   Redlands Christian Migrant Association (RCMA)

o   Southwest Florida Workforce Development Board

o   The Immokalee Foundation



o   Bascom Palmer Eye Institute

o   Florida Lions Eye Clinic

o   Golisano Children’s Hospital

o   Lighthouse of Collier







Collier County Capacity Building

*Future Collier CARES App

Strategic Initiative Total $15,111,719


Total Raised 2020 $20,536,975
Total 2020-21 Contracts $22,169,699
Initiative Efficiencies ($3,459,804)
Total 2020-21 Allocations $18,709,895

About Naples Winter Wine Festival

The Naples Winter Wine Festival, one of the world’s most prestigious charity wine auctions, offers a weekend of unforgettable memories. Guests enjoy world-class food and wine during intimate dinners in private homes and are invited to bid on once-in-a-lifetime travel and wine experiences during an electrifying live auction. Since its inaugural event in 2001, the NWWF has raised more than $212 million, making a profound difference in the lives of hundreds of thousands of children.

 About Naples Children & Education Foundation

The Naples Children & Education Foundation, the founding organization of the Naples Winter Wine Festival, is improving the educational, emotional and health outcomes of underprivileged and at-risk children. Through its annual grants and strategic initiatives, NCEF has impacted over 45 of the most effective nonprofits in the community, providing 275,000 children with the services and resources they need to excel. NCEF’s unique approach, which emphasizes collaboration between organizations and bridges public and private resources, has become a blueprint for how to transform a community, one issue at a time.

For additional information on the Naples Children & Education Foundation or the Naples Winter Wine Festival, contact Lisa Juliano at or 239-514-2239.



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