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Medina County Community Fund announces $33,700 in grants at annual meeting


Fund co-founders honored for their dedication to the community

The Medina County Community Fund of Akron Community Foundation announced grants totaling $33,700 to 15 local nonprofit organizations during the fund’s annual "Spark Hope" event on Thursday, June 23. This latest round of grants brings the Medina County Community Fund's cumulative grantmaking total to more than $680,000.

During the event, Medina County Community Fund leaders also presented the inaugural Founders Award to fund co-founders Norbert "Nobby" Lewandowski and Jack Holland.

"We're here tonight to celebrate not only our donors and our grantees, but to express our gratitude to two men whose generosity and caring permitted the Medina County Community Fund to provide for those less fortunate in the county," said outgoing advisory board Chair Barbara Dzur.

The Founders Award will be presented annually to community members who demonstrate a dedication to the fund's mission of enhancing the quality of life for everyone in Medina County.  

Grants this year were awarded to organizations that address at least one of the fund's four focus areas: arts and culture, community service, education and health.

Jane Back, president of Access the Arts, thanked the fund for supporting a new digital arts class for youth at the Medina County Juvenile Detention Center.

"This particular funding will really help us with a new program that we're offering this year to the juvenile detention center and to other at-risk kids in schools throughout Medina County," Back said. "We're a newer nonprofit and we rely on funds like this to get our programs going, so we’re very grateful."

Other grants awarded by the Medina County Community Fund will provide affordable housing for veterans and support services for individuals in recovery from substance use disorders. The following is a full list of organizations receiving grants in 2022:

Two artists work with an inmate at the Medina County Juvenile Detention Center
A $3,000 grant will allow Access the Arts to expand its programming at the Medina County Juvenile Detention Center to include digital arts.

Access the Arts, to provide digital arts classes for youth at the Medina County Juvenile Detention Center, $3,000

Discover Church, to provide food, clothing, personal health care items, cleaning supplies and paper products to families in Medina County, $1,000

Forever Amber Acres Animal Sanctuary, to expand equine therapy services for Medina County veterans and military spouses, $2,500

Habitat for Humanity of Medina County, to support the construction of affordable housing for families in Medina County, $1,000

Integrated Community Solutions, to provide social and educational enrichment programs for Medina County residents with developmental disabilities, $1,500

Leadership Medina County, to support an annual diversity and inclusion program that will build a culture of belonging within the Medina County community, $1,000

Live Inspired, to provide books and educational toys to economically and educationally disadvantaged Medina County families with young children, $1,000

Matthew 25 Coalition, to provide rent and mortgage assistance to asset-limited families in southwest Medina County, $4,000

Medina Cares Inc., to upgrade the organization’s answering system and expand financial assistance to more adults experiencing a medical crisis in Medina County, $2,500

Medina County Arts Council, to support performances, activities and classes during Arts Week 2022, $1,200

Newbridge Place, to provide safe and affordable housing for low-income veterans with disabilities at the Newbridge Veterans Place in Lodi, $3,500

Operation Homes, to provide shelter and food for homeless individuals in Medina County as they work toward permanent housing and independence, $5,000

Recovery Center of Medina County, to support individuals and families affected by substance abuse by creating equal access to recovery support services, $2,500

Stewart's Caring Place, to provide support services and wellness programs for Medina County residents impacted by cancer, $2,000

Tri-County Jobs for Ohio’s Graduates, to provide academic intervention and career pathway programming for at-risk and low-income Medina County students, $2,000

About the Medina County Community Fund
The Medina County Community Fund, an affiliate fund of Akron Community Foundation, serves as a permanent philanthropic endowment for Medina County. Its mission is to improve the quality of life for Medina County residents, now and in the future. The income from this fund is distributed annually to qualified nonprofit organizations that provide a wide range of cultural, educational, health and community services. To date, the fund has grown to more than $1.1 million and awarded more than $680,000 in grants. For more information, or to contribute to the Medina County Community Fund, visit

About Akron Community Foundation
Celebrating 67 years of building community philanthropy, Akron Community Foundation embraces and enhances the work of charitable people who make a permanent commitment to the good of the community. In 1955, a $1 million bequest from the estate of Edwin Shaw established the community foundation. It is a philanthropic endowment of nearly $280 million with a growing family of nearly 800 funds established by charitable people and organizations from all walks of life. The community foundation and its funds welcome gifts of all kinds, including cash, bequests, stock, real estate, life insurance and retirement assets, just to name a few. To date, the community foundation’s funds have awarded nearly $209 million in grants to qualified nonprofit organizations. For more information about Akron Community Foundation or to learn more about creating your own charitable fund, call 330-376-8522 or visit

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