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Grants provide services, culture, help for area groups

Guadalupe Clinic director of development Jodi Guillemette shows off the dispensary at the clinic on St. Francis South. The clinic relies on grants for nearly a third of its budget. (Feb. 13, 2017)
Guadalupe Clinic director of development Jodi Guillemette shows off the dispensary at the clinic on St. Francis South. The clinic relies on grants for nearly a third of its budget. (Feb. 13, 2017) File photo

Wichita has a variety of grant resources available to area organizations and individuals to help improve the region’s quality of life.

The grants are often vital in keeping key area nonprofits going, now and into the future.

“If it was not for our grantors, we would not be able to do what we do,” said David Gear, executive director of the Guadalupe Clinic. “The Riverside Health Foundation is a grantor that provides money for our everyday operational costs.

“We exist year to year on these grants, and it is why we employe a full-time grant writer and full-time director of development.”

In recent years, when there has been significant reductions in state and federal funding, grants keep the services going.

“Our community grants have helped continue to focus on public health needs, like physical activity and access to healthy food,” said Steve Coen, president and CEO of the Kansas Health Foundation. “Communities all over the state have created walking and bike paths, provided summer meals for children and leveraged resources for school and community activities.”

Coen said it makes sense for the Kansas Health Foundation to provide some of those grants.

“Even small grants can make significant differences and often give coalitions more energy to work on bigger ideas,” he said.

Local funding organizations help Wichita in the arts, health and business, said Shelly Prichard, president and CEO of the Wichita Community Foundation.

“Funding organizations and donors add to the arts, opera, the symphony, music theater, art galleries – they have a huge impact on social services and education,” Prichard said.

And, Prichard said, there is an added impact the grant money can provide: leadership.

“Many of the people on nonprofits provide volunteer service on boards throughout Wichita,” Prichard said. “It’s not just about the dollars but about leadership and vision and advocacy. It is about making sure the things we have are still there.”

The following is a partial list of grant resources available in the Wichita area.

Kansas Health Foundation (kansashealth.org)

Supporting Tobacco-Free Campuses – A Request for Proposal process to fund institutions of higher education to support planning for and implementation of policy strategies that strengthen wellness and create a comprehensive tobacco-free environment. Contact: Carolyn Williams, Kansas Health Foundation senior program officer, at 316-491-8420 or cwilliams@khf.org.

The Impact and Capacity Grants Initiative – Aligns with the KHF goal of reducing health disparities. The Impact and Capacity Grants Initiative is focused on two categories: impact grants (work in key health impact areas) or capacity-building grants (to build nonprofit capacity to address health disparities). Grants are limited to a maximum of $25,000 and one grant award per year. Contact Blair Weibert, KHF program assistant, at 316-262-7676 or bweibert@khf.org.

Wichita Community Foundation (wichitacf.org)

The foundation has competitive grant rounds that are distributed monthly. They totaled $3.2 million in 2015. These grants are recommended to nonprofit agencies in Wichita, other parts of Kansas and several other locations throughout the United States.

Some of the grants include:

DonorCentral – Requests cannot exceed $5,000, and only one submission per organization may be posted at one time. Recommended for nonprofit agencies in Wichita.

Knight Foundation Fund – Supports Wichita’s work in revitalizing downtown in attracting and retaining talent, increasing Wichita’s population and investing in core city vibrancy through projects in smart design, arts and entrepreneurship. The grants are awarded bi-annually in April and October. A total of approximately $200,000 to $300,000 is granted on an annual basis.

Wichita Wagonmasters Fund – The Good Life Grants are committed to benefiting the quality of life for people in the Wichita area. The programs must serve Wichita, avoid duplication of existing services, collaborate with or facilitate collaboration among other nonprofit organizations, suggest creative and practical approaches to community problems and include prevention and remediation suggestions; they can include capital equipment, improvements and construction. The fund will consider requests beginning at $250 with a maximum of $1,000. The average grant awarded is $500.

Many of the grant applications are available online at wichitacf.org. For questions, call the foundation at 316-264-4880.

Koch Industries Cultural Trust

Since 1986, the Koch Cultural Trust has awarded more than $2.3 million in grants to Kansas artists through the Fred and Mary Koch Foundation. The recipients have been in the areas of the dramatic arts, vocal, dance, fine arts, visual arts and instrumental music. Grants are awarded quarterly. Applicants must have a connection to Kansas and be involved with performing or visual arts; maximum amount is $5,000.

For more information, contact the Koch Cultural Trust at 316-706-7805.

Beccy Tanner: 316-268-6336, @beccytanner

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