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Women’s Endowment Fund seeks grant proposals for financial, safety, health programs

The Women’s Endowment Fund of Akron Community Foundation is accepting grant proposals for programs that enrich the lives of local women and girls in the following areas:

  1. Economic Empowerment, including entrepreneurship, asset-building and financial literacy programs; programs that create better jobs, better access to jobs, and quality, affordable child care for women; and programs that enable women with children to work more productively.
  2. Safety from Violence, including programs that raise awareness about violence through education; programs that prevent the occurrence and reoccurrence of violence against women and girls; and programs that develop a consistent and coordinated response to violence against women and girls.
  3. Health and Wellness, including programs that raise awareness about healthy lifestyles through education and prevention; programs that support reproductive health and prevent teen pregnancies; and programs that help women and girls address depression and other mental health issues.

Results from the Women’s Endowment Fund’s biennial forum will also help guide the fund’s 2020 grantmaking decisions. On Sept. 19, the fund convened a group of nearly 100 community members to discuss issues related to economic empowerment for women in Summit County. The forum focused on several industries including education, criminal justice, health care, housing, and transportation. 

“Since our founding, the Women’s Endowment Fund has awarded more than $1.3 million in grants to programs that uplift and empower women and girls throughout Summit County,” said Laura DiCola, co-chair of the fund’s grants committee. “We’re proud to support these essential nonprofits in a direct effort to move the needle for females in our community.”

Last year, the fund awarded grants totaling $180,000 to provide transitional housing to homeless women recovering from addiction and mental health disorders, career readiness preparation for women with developmental disabilities, and stress intervention for expectant and postpartum African-American mothers, among other critical initiatives.

Qualified 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations should apply for a grant online from Oct. 15 - Nov. 15, 2019. A link to the grant application is available at www.akroncf.org/applyWEF

A committee of Women’s Endowment Fund advisory board members, donors and community leaders will review the grant requests. The committee may require a site visit or in-person applicant interview during the grantmaking process. 

Grants will be announced in March. Preference is given to programs that involve collaboration with other agencies, and efforts to obtain matching funds are encouraged. Requests for trips, general operating expenses, computers and office equipment are not generally considered unless they are program related. Funds are not to be used for endowment purposes or to support scholarships, individuals, religious organizations for religious purposes, or organizations outside of Summit County.

For more information about the application process, contact John Garofalo, Akron Community Foundation’s vice president of community investment, at 330-436-5624 or jgarofalo@akroncf.org.