Community Foundation Awards $455,000 in Grants
Six Local Organizations Receive Special Projects Funding
As part of its 2023 fall grants cycle, the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County has awarded $455,000 to local nonprofit organizations through Special Project Grants.
The Special Project Grant process encourages projects in community development and urban affairs; parks, recreation, and environment; health and human services, and youth and education. All nonprofit organizations serving the citizens of St. Joseph County are eligible to apply.
These Special Project Grant recipients include:
Center for the Homeless: $125,000
Approaching 35 years of service to the South Bend community, the Center for the Homeless is now requiring extensive renovations in order to fit guests’ changing needs, keeping guests and staff safe, and allowing them to continually improve their programming and services in order to meet their mission of ending the cycle of homelessness in our community. Funds will be used for renovation of the Community Partners Building (north building) which houses their Early Childhood Intervention and Jobs, Training and Education Centers, community fellowship space, classrooms and administrative offices.
Women’s Care Center: $125,000
Funds will be used to build a new Women’s Care Center in downtown Mishawaka. The City of Mishawaka is donating land and a parking lot at the corner of Lincolnway and Cedar. The new center will be double the size of their current small Mishawaka center, and will be located right next door to the potential One Roof St. Joseph County neighborhood center. With a dedicated classroom, more counseling and education rooms, and a large childcare space, the new center will allow for more classes and individual sessions, as well as for a new program in partnership with the health department to help women access prenatal care sooner. Women’s Care Center has a goal of 3,800 visits at the new center in 2025.
Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Joseph County: $75,000
Funds will be used to support the planning and implementation of a Pilot Program for Harrison Elementary School. In collaboration with Beacon Community Impact, University of Notre Dame researchers, and The Child Abuse Services Investigation & Education Center’s Truancy Prevention Program (CASIE), their team is implementing a Coordinated Action for Resilience through Early-intervention (CARE) Pilot Program to provide a preventative, multi-tiered system of student and family support, focused on reducing chronic absenteeism and improving academic outcomes for K-5 students.
Clubhouse of St. Joseph County: $55,000
Funds will be used to develop an Education and Employment Program to support Clubhouse members’ interests and goals in education and career development. The Education and Employment program is a signature program within the Clubhouse model, however Clubhouse SJC, who will be evaluated by Clubhouse International for consideration of accreditation in August 2024, does not currently have this program. Clubhouse SJC will use funding to help develop this program including supporting interested members’ participation in a professional peer support specialist training program.
Unity Gardens: $50,000
Funds will support the Educational Expansion Program, which utilizes new resources to broaden Unity Gardens’ impact and programming reach. The four Season Geodesic Learning Lab, the Edgy Veggie Mobile Classroom, and the Giving Grove Urban Orchards will help Unity Gardens reach more people with more food in more spaces while creating additional program revenue. Each of these educational tools targets underserved populations who have less access to safe green space, fresh healthy food, and meaningful hands-on learning opportunities.
Neighbor to Neighbor: $25,000
Funds will support expansion of Neighbor to Neighbor’s Welcome Project. Neighbor to Neighbor (N2N) trains volunteer teams to be paired with newly arrived refugees and asylum seekers in St. Joseph County through The Welcome Project. Through this project, volunteers practice welcoming newcomers through assistance with everyday needs, such as transportation assistance and education, employment assistance, meal sharing, and this program allows the newcomers to welcome volunteers into their homes and lives. N2N will be adding 100-150 new newcomers (clients) and a new cohort of volunteers, adding 50 new community members to the project. In total the organization will work with 150-200 new individuals through project expansion.