Cade Museum partnerships and co-sponsored events redefine outreach

Press release from the Cade Museum

Connectivity and collaboration are crucial for innovation. The Cade Museum for Creativity and Invention prioritizes community connections, reaching beyond the museum’s walls to engage curious minds of all backgrounds. The museum’s ongoing partnerships testify to the museum’s mission to transform communities through inspiring and equipping future inventors, entrepreneurs, and visionaries. Joint efforts and events coordinated with the Gainesville Housing Authority and 1,000 Voices of Florida, INC. demonstrate the Cade’s increasingly multifaceted outreach.

Invent Possible: One of the museum’s latest ground-breaking endeavors, The Invent Possible Project: Community Connectivity and Education, takes its inspiration from the museum’s pioneering namesake Dr. James Robert Cade, the inventor of Gatorade and a lifelong educator. In keeping with Dr. Cade’s legacy of community involvement, the project provides widespread Internet connectivity through a partnership with COX and the Gainesville Housing Authority (GHA), with support from the Community Foundation of North Central Florida.

Cox Communications’ Connect2Compete program provides internet access for $9.99 per month to households with school-aged children. The current Invent Possible pilot project comprises homes in Woodland Park, where, for one year, the Cade will pay for residents’ Connect2Compete service.  For just under $15,000 per year, the Cade can help provide this internet service at no cost for 136 households. If successful, the museum will expand the program to other households.

“The Gainesville Housing Authority believes in the power and impact of public and private partnerships and collective collaborations,” said Pamela E. Davis, GHA’s CEO. “The Cade Museum has rallied to support the technology needs of our residents and has cultivated an amazing partnership.”

The Cade on the Road: The museum’s collaboration with the GHA has sparked young minds since 2019, when the Cade Museum opened a Maker Space in the Lake Terrace Community. The Maker Space hosts science activities one week, followed by Cade Tech Educators teaching tech skills the following week. In 2020, the museum expanded its work with the housing authority to a traveling program.

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The Cade leads hands-on activities at the GHA’s Health and Wealth Pop Up Expo, which takes place every Thursday at different GHA communities. The expo includes HIV testing, health screenings and resources, job opportunities, credit repair services, tax filing, and other social services resources. The Cade Museum travels with the pop-up expo from site to site providing fun experiments for children while they wait for their parents. The activities have elicited oohs and ahhs aplenty, sparking young imaginations. Cade Educators have helped children make rainbow viewers while talking about light wavelengths, gravity kaleidoscopes while explaining gravity and light, and sun putty (goo that changes color in the sun) to demonstrate chemical reactions. The Cade’s participation is sponsored by Infotech.

“GHA’s children and youth truly have had a blast over the past year exploring the world through science,” said GHA’s Resident Services Manager, Tina Folston-Hayes. “GHA is extremely grateful to the Cade for the opportunities that they have provided our families. COVID-19 posed so many obstacles, but leave it to the Cade to continuously develop innovative ways to provide creative learning experiences!”

Putting the ‘A’ in STEAM: Dr. Cade, a Renaissance man as well as a man of faith, advocated for creative growth in the arts and music along with science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Following in his footsteps, the Cade Museum is working with 1,000 Voices of Florida, INC. on a benefit concert. 1,000 Voices is a not-for-profit corporation whose mission is to encourage bridges between the diverse members of the Faith Community through music education and fellowship, as well as assist in providing core necessities for individuals in the community.

“During the height of the pandemic, it became evident that many of our community’s children were falling behind in their academics because they lacked access to the internet – something many of us take for granted,” said Joy Banks, President of 1,000 Voices of Florida, INC. “One definition for the word community is ‘kinship.’ We are all family. Family members support one another.”

1,000 Voices will be presenting Duke Ellington Songs from the Heart: Sacred Music Benefit Concert on Sunday, April 25, at 4 p.m. on the lawn of the Cade Museum to help raise funds for the Invent Possible Project. Admission is free, and visitors must bring their own chairs or blankets. Donations are encouraged. Proceeds will go to the Community Foundation of North Central Florida’s Connectivity Fund, which is supporting the Invent Possible Project.

For more information on how to donate to the Cade’s impactful programs, visit cademuseum.org/impact. For more information on the Gainesville Housing Authority, visit gainesvillehousingauthority.org, and for 1,000 Voices of Florida, INC. visit 1000voicesofflorida.com.