In 2001, John and Helen Villaume established the John and Helen Villaume Foundation.
The goal of the Foundation was to provide substantial funds to make grants fostering assistance to worthy Wayne County nonprofit organizations – charitable humanitarian, cultural, environmental and educational. Mrs. Villaume died in 2001 and Mr. Villaume passed in 2004.
In November 2012, the Board of Directors of the John and Helen Villaume Foundation reached a “milestone” in its philanthropy by awarding a total of $1 million in grants in its 11 years of existence.
The Foundation has awarded single or multiple grants to 51 nonprofit organizations in the county for a total of $907,752.00. Sixty-three percent of the funding went to organizations promoting humanitarian causes, such as health care, emergency services, assistance to and protection of children, and assistance to individuals with special needs.
Twenty-four percent of the funding went to help cultural affiliated organizations such as libraries, concerts, and historical societies. Six percent of the giving focused on environmental causes.
The balance of the $1 million was awarded in Educational Enrichment Grants to 22 Wayne County public school teachers and administrators. These grants provide summer sabbatical enrichment travel learning opportunities.
It should be noted that because the Villaume Foundation is a private foundation it can only give to organizations that have 501c (3) nonprofit status.