“Help Wanted” banners ripple in the winds along Seacoast streets and shopping plazas, urging workers to apply, while some of the hardest to fill openings remain vacant due to a lack of training or the skills necessary to meet job requirements. In some cases, lacking the tools of the trade may prohibit earnest workers from employment. To acquire or upgrade skills in a chosen vocation, the Rotary Club of Dover, NH, developed a Vocational Training & Tools (VT&T) financial assistance grant program for individuals who live or work in Dover, NH. 

The first recipient of the grant, Victor Steinberg, expressed his gratitude recently in a note to Jim Munro, President of Dover, NH’s Rotary:  

Thank you for the grant to purchase tools as I “retool” as an auto mechanic and expand my ability to service vehicles and learn a new skill. The grant for the support of tradesmen is much appreciated. A special thank you to Ron Richard for establishing this grant and his understanding of these challenges.

According to Ron Richard, Chairman of Rotary’s VT&T Committee, the effort is the result of a collaboration with Dover Adult Learning Center, Dover H.S.’s Career & Technical program and Community Action Partnership of Strafford County.


“For years our Rotary Club has offered scholarships for high school students to attend a 4-year college and we will continue this,” Richard said. “However, we were missing a way to support students and adults in our community seeking additional education or training to learn trades and get the certifications necessary for employment. We also knew some of the tools to be a mechanic, a plumber, or an electrician, as examples, were expensive and, in some cases, prohibitive. Our VT&T program offers a solution.”

Grants may be awarded for training resulting in a license, certification, or degree in a vocational program and/or the purchase of tools and necessary equipment to continue in the vocation of choice. Grants may cover up to 80% of the cost of tuition/fees or tools and are paid to the individual upon proof of acceptance to the program, or the submission of receipt(s) for tools.

VT&T grant applications are accepted without regard to age, race, gender, sexual orientation, or any disability. Applicants must meet requirements of the desired training program. Applications for a VT&T Grant are reviewed monthly and may be submitted at any time during the year but should be at least six (6) weeks in advance of the training program’s start. To apply, complete the VT&T Grant Application form, available at doverrotary.com and submit via email, or print, complete and mail to: V T&T Grants Committee, Rotary Club of Dover, NH, P.O. Box 1801, Dover, NH 03821.

An email receipt will be sent following the submission. The committee reserves the right to interview or request more information as it sees fit. Both recipients and the program teacher/administrator will be notified when the grant is approved.