BCF awards $200K in grants among local nonprofits

Bainbridge Community Foundation will award a record $269,887 to local nonprofit organizations through its 2017 Community Grants program, officials announced recently.

Sixty‐two organizations are being funded in sectors including arts and culture, animal welfare, education, environment, health and human services and recreation.

Six local organizations are being funded for the first time, as the grant program engaged a record number of funding partners and 20 new donors, officials said.

Over half of this year’s recipients — some 32 organizations — saw their fundraising requests fully achieved.

“We’re very gratified by the continued growth of the Community Grants program, and the generous support of so many new and longtime donors,” said Debbie Kuffel, program and finance officer for the foundation. “These grants make a real impact with the many nonprofit organizations that serve our community in so many ways.”

BCF has seen dramatic growth in its Community Grants program, doubling its annual grants by total dollars in just five years. In 2013, officials said, 49 local agencies received a total of $139,000 for an average grant of $2,800.

This year saw an average award of $4,353, even as BCF funded a record number of organizations. Approximately $1.84 million in local grants have been bestowed since the program began in 2005, providing support for specific programs, capital projects, as well as general operations of local nonprofit organizations. That brings the foundation’s overall giving to more than $11.1 million since 2001, officials said.

“The growth of our Community Grants program is fairly astonishing, even with the tremendous resources and goodwill in our island community,” Kuffel said.