Community Fund surpasses $69 million mark in giving

03.17.2016 Dean Rhodes Spirit Mountain Community Fund

The 39 grants totaling $1.336 million distributed by Spirit Mountain Community Fund during its first quarterly check presentation of 2016 on Wednesday, March 16, leapfrogged the Tribe’s philanthropic entity past the $69 million mark in giving.

At its last presentation in December, the Community Fund sat just shy of the $68 million mark.

The Community Fund receives 6 percent of Spirit Mountain Casino profits as part of the Tribe’s gaming compact with the state of Oregon and distributes the funds to nonprofit organizations in 11 northwestern Oregon counties, as well as once a year to the state’s nine federally recognized Tribes.

Granting categories include education, health, arts and culture, environment, historic preservation and public safety.

On March 16, the Community Fund distributed 27 large grants, 11 small grants and one Tribal grant. The largest single grant stayed close to home with $322,500 being awarded to the Grand Ronde Tribal Police Project as part of the Oregon Tribal Grants program.

Spirit Mountain Community Fund Board of Trustees Chairman Sho Dozono and Tribal Council member Ed Pearsall, who also serves on the fund’s Board of Trustees, welcomed grant recipients to Grand Ronde.

“Community fund program days are the four best days of the year,” said Kathleen George, Community Fund director. “We get to invite our friends and partners out to our homelands.”

George said the Community Fund cherishes the opportunity to empower organizations in accomplishing the work they do in their respective communities.

Dozono, who has served 18 years on the Board of Trustees, said board members appreciate what the organizations do to make western Oregon a better place to live.

Before the grants were awarded, recipients watched a video that recounted the Grand Ronde Tribe’s history, as well as explained how the Community Fund helps various organizations in its granting area.

After the video, Community Fund Program Coordinator Louis King and Dozono distributed the checks.

Other grant recipients were:

  • Beyond Toxics of Portland, $5,000, for its Cosecha Hermosa (Beautiful Bounty) Neighborhood Gardening for Food Security program;

  • Carlton Police Department, $5,000, for its Speed Reduction & Traffic Safety Enhancement Project;

  • Center for Hope and Safety of Salem, $75,000, for its shelter for victims of domestic and sexual violence;

  • Chehalem Youth & Family Services of Newberg, $20,000, for its Family Advocacy and Support Team;

  • Community Sharing Program of Cottage Grove, $4,000, for its Latino Food Box Project;

  • Constructing Hope Pre-apprenticeship Program of Portland, $25,000, for its Skill Trades Training Program;

  • Corvallis Multicultural Literacy Center, $5,000, for its Community Beginner English for Survival, Work and Citizenship program;

  • Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon of Portland, $30,000, for breast and cervical health education and support;

  • Gleaners of Clackamas County Inc. of Oregon City, $5,000, to acquire a forklift;

  • Greater Yamhill Watershed Council of McMinnville, $4,700, for its Watershed Education Adventures Youth Stewardship Program;

  • HIV Alliance of Eugene, $25,000, for reducing injection-related HIV infections in Lane County;

  • I Have a Dream Foundation of Oregon of Portland, $40,000, for its Dreamer School Engagement Project;

  • Japanese Garden Society of Oregon of Portland, $75,000, for its Cultural Crossing expansion project;

  • Johnson Creek Watershed Council of Milwaukie, $10,000, for its Citizen Science 2016 project;

  • Juliette’s House of McMinnville, $40,000, to support its clinical services;

  • Ka Ana Ike Aka Ohana Foundation of Tualatin, $2,000, for its Ho’omoana Hawaiian Cultural Immersion Camp;

  • Kukatonon African Children’s Dance Troupe of Portland, $5,000, for its Elele (Joy!) Dance, Culture and Heritage project;

  • Mental Health for Children Inc. of Springfield, $100,000, for a building to house wellness and community-based treatment programs;

  • Northwest Catholic Counseling Center of Portland, $23,500, for mental health care for lower-income older women;

  • Northwest Human Services of Salem, $50,000, for its QuickCare capital project;

  • Northwest Zen Sangha Center of Portland, $20,000, for its Siskiyou Square Community Garden;

  • OPAL Environmental Justice of Portland, $20,000, for its Youth Environmental Justice Alliance capacity building project;

  • Oregon Center for Public Policy of Silverton, $5,000, for its Great Schools, Great Communities project;

  • Oregon Coast Children’s Theatre of Lincoln City, $5,000, for its Arts in Education and Community Arts Initiative;

  • Oregon Environmental Council Inc. of Portland, $50,000, for reducing toxic air pollution in disadvantaged communities;

  • Oregon Latino Health Coalition of Portland, $50,000, for prenatal care outreach and education;

  • Pacific Rivers Council of Portland, $25,000, to protect rivers and water on Oregon’s private and state timberlands;

  • Pacific University of Forest Grove, $50,000, for its Vision Care community outreach;

  • Pathfinders of Oregon of Portland, $30,000, to help children of incarcerated parents break the cycle and build family strength;

  • Portland Community ToolBank, $5,000, for building better communities;

  • Rebuilding Together of Portland, $25,000, to rebuild homes for low income, elderly and disabled people;

  • ROSE Community Development of Portland, $32,590, for its Lents Youth Initiative;

  • Sauvie Island Center of Portland, $10,000, for its Farm to Kitchen: Engaging the Next Generation program;

  • Tillamook Bay Community College, $75,000, to create a Partners for Rural Innovation Center to serve Tillamook County;

  • Triangle Productions of Portland, $2,000, for its co-production of “Heathers: The Musical.”

  • Tryon Life Community Farm of Portland, $5,000, for its Beyond Nature As Backdrop hands-on ethnobotany education project;

  • Willamette Valley Cancer Foundation of McMinnville, $5,000, for its Kids on the Block Tobacco Awareness Program’s interactive materials update.

  • YWCA of Greater Portland, $50,000, for its Family Preservation Project.

The Community Fund also drew for door prizes of Tribal vests and Oregon photo books. Winners were Chehalem Youth & Family Services, Northwest Zen Sangha, Portland Community ToolBank, Constructing Hope Pre-apprenticeship Program and the Pacific Rivers Council.

Since its inception, the Community Fund has awarded 2,283 grants totaling almost $69.2 million since it was founded in 1997.