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Community Foundation Awards Nearly $36K in Final Urgent Needs Fund Grants

[Photo credit: Benzie Area Christian Neighbors; Image description: A BACN volunteer is masked and is stocking the food pantry with canned goods.]

The Grand Traverse Regional Community Foundation has awarded a total of $35,883 in final grants from its Urgent Needs Fund to five nonprofit organizations serving Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, and Leelanau Counties respectively.

Launched in March 2020, the Urgent Needs Fund aimed to support organizations working with individuals and families who were disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic throughout 2020 and into 2021. Partners receiving grant support have included health and human services, arts, culture, and environmental organizations as well as governmental and Tribal entities.

“We have been fortunate to partner with many organizations to support individuals and families across our region,” said Steve Wade, Vice President of Community Impact for the Community Foundation. “We provided support for a variety of community needs, such as helping small businesses adapt to COVID-19 as well as supporting personal protective equipment for food pantry workers, funding outdoor art exhibit equipment, and providing emergency financial support for college students.”

For the final round of Urgent Needs Fund grantmaking, a grant of $7,176 went to a human services organization in each of the region’s five counties, including Benzie Area Christian Neighbors, Good Samaritan Family Services, Kalkaska Area Interfaith Resources, Leelanau Christian Neighbors, and Love Thy Neighbor.

Since the Urgent Needs Fund’s inception, the Community Foundation has supported 75 nonprofit, governmental, and Tribal entities across the five-county region with a total of $977,256 in grants. Funding for the Urgent Needs Fund came from many individual donor partners across the region and several philanthropic partners, including the Oleson Foundation, Rotary Charities of Traverse City, United Way of Northwest Michigan, DTE Energy Foundation, Herrington-Fitch Family Foundation, and the Huckle Family Foundation, among others.

“If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that we need to be prepared to respond quickly to our community and be flexible in how we do so,” said David Mengebier, President and CEO of the Community Foundation. “While our Urgent Needs Fund has closed, we continue to build and steward resources to meet areas of greatest need so that we can support our community when it’s needed most, now and in the years to come.”

To learn more about the impact of the Community Foundation’s Urgent Needs Fund, visit www.gtrcf.org/give/urgentneeds. To support the areas of greatest need across the five-county region, donations to the Community Foundation are welcome at https://www.gtrcf.org/give.