Investing in Community
The Annual Community Grants Cycle is the heart of the Bainbridge Community Foundation (BCF) grants program. Each year since its inception in 2005, BCF staff and dozens of well-trained community volunteers have spent hundreds of hours reviewing applications, conducting site visits, and setting priorities. BCF discretionary funds provide initial proposal funding; then Fund Advisors and the community at large are invited to partner with BCF to support these important programs. This community-based approach to grant-making ensures that community needs are met — by our own informed and engaged community members.
In addition to BCF discretionary grant-making funds, we partner with Charitable Fund Advisors, private foundations, and the public through Bainbridge Gives to fulfill the rest of the funding requests. The BCF Shel Klasky Award (the BCF Trustees' Award) is given to nonprofits with applications promoting collaboration between organizations or creating innovative programs, and is funded by donations from board, staff, and Community Grants Cycle team members. In 2021, BCF launched its first Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Social Justice (IDEAS) Award that honors proposed projects focused on equitable access to programs and services for everyone.
2021 Grants Cycle: In It Together
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we all operate. The importance of COVID-19 support remained a priority during this year's grants cycle.
Application questions were similar to last year, with new questions on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) within each organization and in programs, reflecting the importance the foundation places on this issue. Questions regarding the effects of COVID-19 on the organization are also included. BCF encouraged all sectors of our nonprofit community serving greater Bainbridge Island to apply.
This year, 47 volunteers from the community reviewed 56 applications to the CGC, and 52 of those proposed projects were vetted and approved. BCF provided $50,000 in initial funding, and the rest of the support came from generous donors who gave at all levels. BCF was able to fund all approved applications, for a total of $422,589. The Shel Klasky Award was given to Fishline for its strong partnerships during the pandemic, and the IDEAS Award was given to the Bainbridge Island Historical Museum for its exhibit on Bainbridge Island's diverse history.
In total, BCF has granted more than $17.5 million back to the community since inception. To read the full article on this year's grants cycle, click here.
A reminder that final reports from grants awarded during the 2020 Community Grants Cycle are due August 31, 2021.
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