Last month, seven area nonprofit organizations participated in our latest Facebook Mini-Grant round. After 708 total votes, three were declared the winners. View all the entrants.

Congratulations to our winners!

1st Place: Hope House – $750 grant

This grant will help improve the current playset and area.
pictured: Matthew Lehr, Housing Director at Love in Action

Last year Hope House was home to 37 children ranging from newborn to teen. Homelessness can be traumatic to a child, causing them to suffer emotional, behavioral, and learning problems. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, play is essential for children’s cognitive, physical, and emotional well-being both at home and at school.

Play reduces the traumatic effects of homelessness on children who live in temporary housing programs like Hope House and promotes their physical and psychological development.

This grant will help us repaint and extend the life of our current playset, add playground woodchips, a border and a sandbox, along with other toys.

2nd Place: Lakeshore LifeWorks – $500 grant

This grant will help fund move-in kits for incoming LifeWorks youth.
pictured: Rick Mannes, Executive Director

Lakeshore LifeWorks is designed to provide transitional housing and loving relationships to our vulnerable youth ages 18-21. We believe that having a personal relationship with Jesus is the solid foundation on which to build up our youth so that they can reach their full potential.

With this grant we will put together move-in kits for incoming LifeWorks youth. Many of our youth, when moving into the LifeWorks home, have few to none of their own personal belongings to begin with. So having a full move-in basket with their name on it will make the LifeWorks facility feel a little more like home!

Move-in baskets have everything a youth would need to move into their own apartment at LifeWorks. From a journal to personal hygiene to bedding. These move-in baskets allow us to welcome our new youth into our LifeWorks home with essential items that will help them adjust to their new home and prepare them for their next steps to Independence.

3rd Place: R.E.A.D – $250 grant

This grant will help transform adults’ lives through improved reading and writing skills.
pictured: Susan Lowe, Executive Director; Suk Maya Tamang, student; and Eunice Petersen, tutor

Over 6500 adults in Northwest Ottawa County can’t read a newspaper, a grocery list, a prescription label or review their child’s homework. R.E.A.D. (Reading Enables Adult Development) is a local nonprofit that transforms an adult’s life through improved reading and writing skills.

More than half of our students are English as a Second Language learners. They long to improve their English skills so they can assimilate into their local community and adopted country. Suk Maya, a refugee from Nepal, has worked with her R.E.A.D. tutor for five years so she could improve her English reading, writing, and speaking skills in order to adapt to life in America. She recently achieved her goal of becoming a citizen and is proud to make the Tri-Cities and the United States her home!

Every person has a right to literacy. Strong adult literacy programs like R.E.A.D. bring a significant return on investment by improving the lives of adult learners, their families and the lakeshore community!

Thank you to all our entrants, and to everyone who voted. These organizations couldn’t do their good work without your support!

If you’d like to learn more about our grant process or how to apply, visit our Grants page.