$500K in donations to benefit Tristate

Nearly half a million dollars is making its way to charities and people in need in the Tristate this summer.

Among the largest contributors to the amount is the Greater Cincinnati Foundation, which has launched a $100,000 challenge grant to support the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center’s “Be the Conductor” capital campaign. 

Another large donor is Duke Energy, which is providing $100,000 to support the hardest-hit areas around Goshen, where an EF2 tornado was confirmed last month. Altafiber, United Way of Greater Cincinnati, Meals on Wheels and Fox 19 teamed up to host a fundraiser for Goshen residents. So far 2022, Matthew 25: Ministries has shipped 590 truckloads of aid weighing 12.7 million pounds to partners throughout the U.S. and around the world, helping people in need due to extreme poverty or catastrophic disaster, including those affected by the Goshen tornado.

The GCF grant for the Freedom Center will match all 2022-2023 donations dollar-for-dollar up to $100,000 from supporters who have not previously contributed to the Freedom Center’s capital campaign. The grant will be used to support the addition of a new signature exhibit that tells the Black American story more completely, connecting past history with contemporary social justice issues. 

“GCF is committed to conversations about racial equity that build connections and move us forward with enhanced insights and shared purpose,” said Rasheda Cromwell, GCF’s vice president of community strategies. “The exhibition offers the community learning experience that constructively addresses social inequities and a call to action for visitors to play a vital role in ensuring social justice for all.” 

Rasheda Cromwell

Here’s a digest of a variety of recent grants – adding up to $300,000:

  • Santa Maria Community Services Inc. received a $35,000 grant from the Greater Cincinnati Foundation for its Promoting Our Preschoolers program and a $45,000 grant from the U.S. Bank Foundation for its workforce development program POP aims to address inequity in academic success in kindergartens in Price Hill by addressing the inequitable access to education among people of color and low socioeconomic status. The three-year U.S. Bank grant will be targeted toward individuals who face barriers to employment, financial and education goals, such as income instability, homelessness, and lack of skills, education or credentials. Santa Maria also said it has been awarded a one-year grant from the SC Ministry Foundation toward the POP program.
  • CancerFree Kids is receiving $7,454 thanks to the second Graham’s Bike Parade in Erlanger. The event, hosted by the Schroth family, was in recognition of the second anniversary of 6-year-old Graham Schroth’s cancer diagnosis. More than 150 friends and family joined the Schroth family for the event at Flagship Park. Graham was diagnosed with B-cell lymphoblastic leukemia on May 28, 2020. Two years later, he continues treatment at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Over the past two years, Graham’s Bike Parade has raised more than $19,500.
  • Reset Ministries recently received a $5,000 grant from the State Farm Foundation. Local agent and board member Traci Johnson facilitated the grant for Reset.
  • Wave Pool presented works by Vanessa German, Pedro Reyes and Terence Hammonds in May at the Independent Art Fair in New York City and raised $50,800 in art sales there. The organization also received its first National Endowment for the Arts grant, for $20,000 to continue the Welcome (M)Art program in 2023. Wave Pool calls Welcome (M)Art an opportunity for social discourse that blurs the lines between art gallery, grocery and dinner party. Artists can create immersive and interactive installations at the Welcome Project, a storefront at Wave Pool in Camp Washington focused on the immigrant and refugee experience that includes a small food market and teaching kitchen. Also in May, Wave Pool hosted its first “High Tide” “friendraiser” at Peterloon with live art-making by Joe Walsh and Jon Flannery, music by Preston Charles Bell III and food by Parts and Labor and Rose Che. In partnership with the Camp Washington Urban Revitalization Corp., Wave Pool is launching a farmers market to bring regular food access to Camp Washington. Every Thursday this summer and fall in Valley Park, farmers, bakers, crafters and other vendors will sell goods from 4-6 p.m. Funding for the Camp Washington Farmer’s Market is provided by the American Heart Association and Hamilton County Nonprofit Relief Funds.
  • Local nonprofit 55 North recently received two grants to support its services for seniors. The John Hauck Foundation, Fifth Third Bank, awarded 55 North $20,000, while the Marge & Charles J. Schott Foundation gave the organization $35,000. 55 North’s support services are available to anyone age 55 years or older that lives in Norwood or in Cincinnati’s East End, Hyde Park, Madisonville, Mt. Lookout, O’Bryonville and Oakley neighborhoods. 
  • Leadership Council for Nonprofits recently received grants from two local foundations in support of its BOLD, or Board Orientation + Leadership Development, program. The Elsa Heisel Sule Foundation approved a two-year grant totalling $13,000, and Greater Cincinnati Foundation gave $10,000. Both grants will enable the Leadership Council to help address racial discrepancy in nonprofit board leadership through strategic outreach, recruitment and partnerships with diverse organizations and individuals.
  • At least a dozen Northern Kentucky-based nonprofits have received funding from the Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels as part of the organization’s $3.1 million in awards to 314 nonprofits this year. Among local recipients: Behringer-Crawford Museum received $6,400 to purchase gun safes and archival boxes to preserve Civil War weaponry. Redwood, which provides educational, therapeutic, vocational and other services to children and adults with disabilities, received $7,785 to purchase and install a new clock system at its Fort Mitchell facility. A grant to the Girl Scouts of Kentucky’s Wilderness Road will pay for climbing harnesses and helmets for the Girl Scout Adventure Program, providing outdoor engagement to over 6,485 girl and adult members. More information can be found at www.kycolonels.org/awarded-grants-2022.
  • In the first half of 2022, Starfire received grants for community-building work from the Charles H. Dater Foundation, the Wohlgemuth Herschede Foundation, the John Hauck Foundation at Fifth Third Bank and the Daniel & Susan Pfau Foundation at the Greater Cincinnati Foundation. Investments from these charitable and visionary organizations help Starfire break down barriers of social isolation for people with developmental disabilities, like Down syndrome, autism and cerebral palsy.
  • Losantiville Country Club was host as 88 golfers teed off June 7 for the 20th annual O’Geop Memorial Golf Classic. Thanks to sponsors Mariner Wealth Advisors, Matlock Electric and Camargo Cadillac, the outing raised over $25,000 for the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick Foundation. The money continues to fund the Ulster Project, feeding the underprivileged in our area and supporting the promotion of Irish Culture through music, dance and theater.
  • The Ohio River Foundation received a $25,000 grant from the L&L Nippert Charitable Foundation to support invasive plant and tree removal by the Ohio River Valley Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area. ORV CISMA is a coalition of nonprofits, agencies and businesses working to share information and resources to coordinate efforts toward controlling and removing invasive species in a 22-county area in the Ohio River valley. The Ohio River Foundation originated the project in 2016 and coordinates its activities. Individuals can help by removing non-native, invasive plants and shrubs and trees from their property, as well as volunteering at a public park. A tool at www.orvcisma.org will be developed to help track the work.
  • North Fairmount Community Center received a $10,000 grant from the Elsa Heisel Sule Foundation for its free summer camps for children that live in North Fairmount. NFCC’s summer camps for children age 5 and older run weekdays through August.
  • People Working Cooperatively, a $12 million nonprofit that provides home repair, weatherization and accessibility modification services for low-income homeowners in 20 Greater Cincinnati counties, has received $10,000 in funding from the Elsa Heisel Sule Foundation. The average cost of a repair for PWC is $1,500. 
  • The Immigration & Refugee Law Center recently co-hosted an event that featured several critically-acclaimed musicians as well as a dance troupe and speakers, including executive director Julie Leftwich. The collaboration was focused on two vital actions: raising funds for direct aid and increasing awareness about its pro-bono legal services for those impacted by the Ukraine war. The event brought together over 250 people and raised $5,000 for Ukraine relief efforts. Over the last few months, the IRLC has partnered with several agencies to show support for the Russian-speaking community in Cincinnati. IRLC partnered with Jewish Family Service and hosted an informational meeting. IRLC also joined with Catholic Charities on a panel at Jewish Family Service to provide updated information about legal pathways available for those in Eastern Europe that have been forced to flee their homes.

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