Medina Foundation awards capacity-building grants to Whatcom nonprofits

The Medina Foundation recently announced grant awards of $200,350 to nonprofit organizations in Whatcom and Skagit counties. These capacity-building grants are intended to further strengthen nonprofits by helping these organizations undertake activities such as purchasing a new database, hiring a grant writer, or engaging in a strategic planning process.

“By making this additional investment in these outstanding organizations, we hope to ensure that these organizations will continue to effectively serve Skagit and Whatcom residents for many years to come,” Carolyn Wall, who leads the Medina Foundation’s Capacity Building Initiative, said in a press release. These grants are in addition to other annual grants that the Medina Foundation has made to these organizations.

The 2011 Capacity Building Initiative in Whatcom and Skagit counties was launched by the Medina Foundation in response to its partners who identified this type of work as an urgent and often overlooked need.

“We are immensely grateful for the Medina Foundation’s support and confidence in the nonprofit organizations in our community,” Mauri Ingram, CEO of the Whatcom Community Foundation, said in the news release. “It is rare for foundations to invest in strengthening organizations and, with the downturn in the economy, many nonprofits simply don’t have the money or time to invest in things like a new database that helps them evaluate their work or a marketing plan that helps them reach clients and donors.”

Recipients and award amounts are:

• Assistance League of Bellingham, $20,000

• Bellingham Food Bank, $15,750

• Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northwest Washington, $20,000

• Boys & Girls Clubs of Whatcom County, $20,000

• Brigid Collins Family Support Center, $20,000

• Hope House, $16,000

• Northwest Youth Services, $18,600

• Opportunity Council, $20,000

• Whatcom Literacy Council, $10,000

• Anacortes Family Center, $20,000

• Skagit County Community Action Agency, $20,000

The Medina Foundation is a family foundation based in Seattle that makes grants in 14 Puget Sound counties. Established in 1947 by Norton Clapp, the Medina Foundation aspires to improve lives by funding human service organizations that provide direct support to Puget Sound residents. The Foundation awards approximately $3.5 million in grants each year.

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