Throughout our 49-year history, our Greatest Needs Fund has existed to provide support for the future needs that we can’t always anticipate. No year has demonstrated this more than 2020. While we have all been challenged by the upheaval that our world has faced since March, the response from our community has been—and continues to be—inspiring.

Gifts to the Greatest Needs Fund make it possible for us to care for and impact critical programs that support health and human services, arts and culture, diversity and inclusion, economic and community betterment, education, and the environment. We’ve continued to award grants from this fund during the pandemic and created a new fund—the Community Relief & Recovery Fund—­to respond to the increased need brought on by COVID-19.

Your support of the Community Relief & Recovery Fund enables the foundation, fund holders, and donors to pool resources to collectively support the ongoing relief and recovery of for-impact organizations that have been adversely affected by COVID-19, and that continue to play a critical role in caring for individuals and families. We’re awarding another round of grants from this fund at the end of this month, so your gift today will help right away.

Every contribution to the Greatest Needs Fund and Community Relief & Recovery Fund helps make a difference right here in Northern Ottawa County. Whether it’s $25 or $25,000, your support helps to ensure that as our community’s needs evolve, we continue to focus on improving the quality of life for all.

Community support allows us to continue to invest in our community in a flexible and impactful way that addresses a range of critical needs, including future needs that cannot be anticipated.

Below are a few highlights of how gifts to the foundation have made it possible to impact our local communities this past year.


Spring Lake Public Schools

$58,898 to support the adoption and implementation of Social-Emotional curricula

The Social-Emotional Learning curricula will provide sustainable training and tools to the students and staff of Spring Lake Public Schools regarding the development of healthy social-emotional life skills. The project will allow both students and staff of the elementary and intermediate schools to manage and respond to stress, anxiety, and general emotional distress. It includes two components:

›› Mindful Schools, a nationally researched-based curriculum, for all K-6 students. Studies have shown that Mindful Schools can improve attention and emotional regulation among students, including decreased feelings of stress and anxiety.

›› Trauma-Informed Classroom training for all K-4 staff. A trauma-informed school is not only informed of, but sensitive to, trauma and provides a safe, stable, and understanding environment.

Photo credit Grand Haven Tribune


Love in Action

$31,500 to renovate Love in Action’s health and dental clinic

The Health and Dental Clinic at Love in Action provides accessible care for uninsured, or underinsured residents, 18 years and older, of Northwest Ottawa County. Just last year, the clinics provided over 500 members of our community with more than 1,200 on-site health and dental visits. The critical renovations will increase space for staff, medical volunteers, and patients while improving patient and client privacy and confidentiality. Renovations include the creation of two reception areas – one for general programming clients and another for clinic patients; new office and clinic space; new filing room, and updated flooring.

Photo credit Becky Vargo/Grand Haven Tribune


The Momentum Center

$13,000 for “Community Conversations on Race and Racism”

The Momentum Center launched The Town Hall Series on Racism, virtual community conversations, for residents of the local and neighboring communities. The monthly series serves as a platform for conversation between community leaders and members of our community that highlights various aspects of race and racism, while providing educational information and resources, as well as opportunities for action. To date topics have included “Talking About Racism,” “Racism and the Media,” and “Ethnic Intimidation.”

Gifts to the Greatest Needs Fund and Community Relief & Recovery Fund helped make a positive impact this past year, and as we continue to raise awareness of critical issues facing our community, we’re asking you to please give generously to one or both of these funds.

Thank you in advance for your support.