CreArte Latino Cultural Center Launches 'Fortifying CreArte' Initiative With Grant From Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation

The bilingual arts and education nonprofit is poised for exponential growth thanks to a $126,000 grant.

By: Dec. 09, 2023
CreArte Latino Cultural Center Launches 'Fortifying CreArte' Initiative With Grant From Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation

More than a decade after its founding as a creative hub for the Latino communities of Sarasota and Manatee counties, CreArte Latino Cultural Center is poised for a leap of exponential growth. A $126,000 grant from Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation will provide the funds to launch the center's “Fortifying CreArte” initiative, which will elevate the organization with paid professional staff, an accounting service, and more.

“CreArte Latino Cultural Center delivers outstanding performances and educational programming and is a wonderful collaborator with other organizations,” said Teri A Hansen, president and CEO of Barancik Foundation. “Our investment aims to help the CreArte Latino team elevate and grow their vital, inclusive work, which connects our Latino communities and the wider community.”

CreArte Latino was created in 2012 and became a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization in 2016. That year, it also increased its performance schedule to four full-length plays annually, one children's theater production, and added its first “Spanglish” improv comedy show. In 2017, CreArte Latino elected Carolina Franco as its non-paid president and artistic director. Under her guidance, the organization has continued to expand its programming and youth and adult education options, collaborating with artists from Sarasota and throughout Latin America for ongoing events and programs.

The seed money from Barancik Foundation will support a full-time salary as producing artistic director for Franco, who before this grant had volunteered her time. The initiative also includes hiring a part-time grants writer and donor database administrator, a part-time fundraising professional, and an accounting service. Franco adds that the organization is also looking for a new space.

“This grant makes a monumental difference for CreArte Latino,” says Franco. “It paves the way to a brighter future—one with a strong foundation and support system. We've accomplished a great deal as a mostly volunteer-staffed organization—just imagine what we can accomplish with a paid staff and a dedicated operations budget. Barancik Foundation's grant will allow us to do far more for our community. I am so grateful for their trust, guidance and support. A dream is now coming true for me. I can finally say I work at CreArte Latino Cultural Center.”

To find out more about CreArte Latino Cultural Center, to donate or register for programs and events, visit  or CreArte Latino on Facebook.

About Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation

The Charles and Margery Barancik family has long believed in the power of philanthropy to shape our world and enrich the lives of all people.  It was the expression of this belief that led them in 2014 to establish Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation—a private, family foundation located in Sarasota, Florida.  Barancik Foundation creates initiatives and awards grants in Sarasota and beyond in the areas of education, humanitarian causes, arts and culture, the environment, and medical research.  For more information, visit

About CreArte Latino Cultural Center

CreArte Latino Cultural Center was founded in 2012 as a creative hub for the Latino/Hispanic community in Sarasota and Manatee Counties. The nonprofit organization seeks to forge a bilingual cultural exchange between Latinos/Hispanics and the community at large through the arts and education, including theater productions, book clubs, classes, workshops and collaborations with artists from the area and throughout Latin America. CreArte Latino Cultural Center is located at 8251 15th St. East, Sarasota. Visit and CreArte Latino on Facebook.