Many of you may have received a letter from us in the mail for the 2021 Gambit Gala Fundraiser that we obviously were not able to hold in person this year - what a bummer, it was one of the days I looked forward to the most each year.
The Nashville Chess Center, as you can imagine, is in a big financial hole operating our school programs at 10% of what they use to be, having no chess camps or in person tournaments. Our team has tried our hardest to keep the community engaged and rolling, but we know the virtual setting is just not the same. All we can do is remain optimistic and plan for a brighter future ahead.
If you are able to give to your fundraiser this year, we would be most grateful. Of course, all donations are tax deductible as we are a 501-c3 charitable organization. We can accept donations of up to $1,000 via our website or to make it as convenient as possible, you can even Venmo me (Todd-Andrews-15) and please just put in the notes "Gambit Gala" and I will be sure 100% of those funds get to the club.
Below is a link to our web donations site and the letter we sent out. Again, we appreciate all of you and your children. We miss you all very much and are extremely grateful for the joy we get out of the members of the community we still get to see time-to-time.
October 29, 2020
Name/address Dear :
If this were a normal year, we would have been together last month at our Gambit Gala, our annual celebration of the Nashville Chess Center and our community friends and students of chess. Unfortunately, very little about this year can be described as normal.
Our chess home on Belmont Boulevard has been a soulless, empty building. This was our first summer without chess camps in over thirteen years. Thankfully, we reopened our building to the public four weeks ago for the first time since March. We began live chess classes at some schools last week, but we have continued to reach out and teach chess to children and hold tournaments for the last seven months. We just have had to do it differently. And please, don’t view this letter as an event cancelation letter; rather view it as an opportunity to continue to support NCC as we adapt our programs to bring Chess for Children classes and tournaments to Middle Tennessee children.
The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent closing of schools in Davidson County placed stress while creating an opportunity for us to step back and assess how we could best continue to serve our constituency. During the 2019-2020 academic year, Nashville Chess Center was teaching Chess for Children classes at twenty public schools, ten private schools and one public library. With stay at home mandates and school closures, we quickly transitioned to offering on-line instruction on our Facebook page and established an on-line club for our programs at Chess.com. We also launched the NCC Kids Grand Prix Series through our partnership with Chesskid.com. We have completed our second of three K-12 Scholastic Nashville City Championship Qualifying Tournaments online, and we hope that we will be able to hold small groups in person in January 2021 to determine our City Champion.
In the midst of learning how to best cope with the pandemic, Nashville Chess Center was pleased to be selected for a $6,000 grant from the University of Tennessee to implement two hours per week of chess instruction during the school day in a Metro Nashville Public School System Title 1 school for the 2020- 2021 academic year. This is part of a project UT is implementing aimed at establishing a Girls Achieving
In Mathematics, Engineering, Science program at UT to promote girls’ interest and self-efficacy in STEM using chess and other strategy games. UT has chosen to focus on strategy games because they are great examples of effective and entertaining tools to teach meta-cognition, computational thinking and problem solving as well as self-regulation. NCC has always been aware of the significant benefits to be gained by children studying and playing chess and is pleased to be selected as the sole agency to work with UT in this important study. This program is now in place virtually at Nashville Classical Charter School.
Nashville Chess Center was also instrumental in assuring that all MNPS elementary students are recipients of Gold membership accounts (a $49 value) from ChessKid.com for free. MNPS is one of only six school systems in the country to receive this grant from Chess.Kid.com.
We are currently offering virtual Chess for Children classes to children from eleven MNPS schools and three private schools in Davidson County. We have begun live classes at two private schools and hope to begin live programming in Davidson County public schools in January. We have expanded our presence in Middle Tennessee and are now offering classes at a private school in Maury County and to three groups of children in Williamson County.
We are updating and posting to our Facebook page and website regularly and invite you to follow our activities in these difficult times. We appreciate your support of our 2019 Gambit Gala and we invite you to:
· Lift a glass to celebrate virtually how much we have grown since our first Chess for Children classes at Ross Elementary School in 1998
· Make a gift in 2020 to ensure that the Nashville Chess Center can maintain and expand our Chess for Children programs this school year
· Plan to join us at our 2021 Gambit Gala
All the best,