May 30 was an especially rewarding day for both the Community Foundation of the North Okanagan and 30 local charities who received funding in the community foundation’s biggest spring grants cycle ever.
While more than $500,000 of designated and donor-directed funds are typically distributed throughout the year, spring brings the opportunity for the Foundation to distribute undesignated funds in response to community need.
Local charities working in the areas of arts & culture, education, environment, health and social services submit their grant applications each year. The Foundation’s volunteer granting committee then evaluates and recommends eligible applications for program-related or capital projects.
After seeing the amount available for undesignated funds climb incrementally from the $60,000-range from 2011 to 2013, larger gains have been realized in recent years as awareness grows about the impact these grants have, says Foundation executive director Leanne Hammond.
“Last year, we were thrilled to exceed the $100,000 mark, and this year, we blew that goal away by leveraging other funders and awarding over $200,000 worth of grants to local charities!”
Donors and funding partners are growing increasingly aware of the opportunity to be a part of collectively meeting needs identified by the community foundation’s Spring Grants program. By providing donations directly, or earmarking all or a portion of earnings on their endowment funds, donors, businesses, and even other foundations are helping the program to distribute more every year.
Diverse grants support a vibrant community
Here’s a look at the organizations funded this year: Abbeyfield Houses of Vernon; Allan Brooks Nature Centre; Archway Society for Domestic Peace (formerly Vernon Women’s Transition House Society); Brain Trust Canada Association; Canadian Mental Health Association; Cycling Without Age; Enderby & District Arts Council; Enderby & District Community Resource Centre; FASD Okanagan Valley Assessment and Support; HOPE Outreach; Hullcar & Deep Creek Hall Society; John Rudy Health Resource Centre; Junior Achievement BC; Kindale Development Association; Kingfisher Interpretive Centre; Learning Disabilities Association of BC; Literacy Society of the North Okanagan; Lumby Food Bank; Maven Lane (North Okanagan Childcare Society); Men’s Shed (project of CMHA); Okanagan Humane Society; Okanagan Quality Life Society; Okanagan Regional Library; O’Keefe Ranch & Interior Heritage Society; The People Place; The Bridge Educational Society; United Way; Vernon & District Association for Community Living; Vernon Public Art Gallery; and Vernon Restholm.
For more details on the projects funded or for more information about donating to the community grants program, visit the Foundation online at cfno.org or call today at 250-542-8655.