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Community Foundation Awards $10K in Grants to Support DEI Efforts across the Region

[Photo credit: Kids on the Go Traverse City // Image description: Four young children in Kids on the Go blue t-shirts sitting in a semi-circle around a KOTG staff member who is mid-clap and is wearing a blue polo and face mask.]

The Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation has awarded $10,000 total in grants to organizations across the five-county region to support diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) efforts. These grants were the first to be awarded from the Community Foundation’s recently established DEI Fund, which is dedicated to providing support for organizations led by BIPOC, LGBTQ+, immigrant, neurodiverse, and/or disability community members as well as other programs, initiatives, projects, and opportunities promoting equity and inclusion in Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, and Leelanau Counties.

“This grantmaking round was full of organizations that have been actively working in DEI systems and have been seeking ways of getting that last bit of funding needed to launch forward,” said Brett Sinclair, member of the DEI Fund Advisory Committee. “These are the leaders in our community.”

For the DEI Fund’s first grantmaking cycle, the Community Foundation supported eight organizations, including The Friendship Community Center, Kids on the Go Traverse City, Mashup Rock & Roll Musical, Mnamaadiziwin Inc, National Writers Series, Suttons Bay Public Schools, United Way of Northwest Michigan on behalf of Raven & Lotus, and Women’s Resource Center. The grants will fund a variety of DEI efforts, from community potlucks and a DEI training to general operating support and a youth program expansion.

“It’s vital that our area be welcoming and inclusive for everyone, regardless of race, sexual orientation, background, or beliefs,” said Meagan Warner-Alvarado, member of the Community Foundation’s DEI Fund Advisory Committee. “To help community groups boost their efforts in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion means we all reap the benefits of a more vibrant welcoming region.”

Community members interested in supporting organizations and efforts like those receiving funding from the DEI Fund are invited to visit www.gtrcf.org/supportDEI to make an online donation; single and recurring gifts are accepted.

The DEI Fund’s next grant application deadline is December 1. Nonprofit, governmental, and Tribal entities across Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska and Leelanau Counties are eligible to apply for grant requests up to $2,500. To learn more about the Community Foundation’s DEI Fund, visit: www.gtrcf.org/grants.