Every contribution to the Greatest Needs Fund—whether it’s $5 or $25,000—means one more program can teach mindfulness to fifth and seventh graders, or give capacity support to local for-impact organizations, or promote collaborative relationships between local schools and the business community.

Your contribution makes a difference – right here in Northwest Ottawa County

As our community’s needs evolve, we remain committed to improving the quality of life for all because we all benefit from a healthy and vibrant community.

Below are three of our recent grants that benefitted from this fund. With your gifts we can continue to impact critical programs that support health and human services, arts and culture, diversity and inclusion, economic and community betterment, education, and the environment.

Transforming Lives

Imagine not being able to speak the language where you live. How would you run errands? Get a job? Communicate with your children’s teachers? R.E.A.D. is the only local, free, one-on-one tutoring program for adults seeking to improve their literacy skills, and over 80% of the participants are ESL (English as a Second Language) students. Their mission is to provide Northwest Ottawa County adults with an opportunity to improve and transform their lives by strengthening their reading and language skills.

“It helps me a lot to know my alphabet, to learn to write my name, to know where signs are to find my way,” said Binita Gurung. “Now I am learning to be able to do things and function everyday with the help of my R.E.A.D. tutor, Jane, and ESL classes.”

Encouraging Play

Imagination Station has been a landmark in our community for almost thirty years, and, while it carries fond memories for a lot of people, its antiquated wooden structure was an obstacle for many.

The goal of the community-led Project Reimagine committee was “a playspace that’s fully accessible and made of durable materials,” said Chris Streng, committee co-chair. “We wanted this project to be built by the community from concept design to construction.”

In October 2018, over 2,000 volunteers helped build Imagination Station 2.0, an accessible playspace designed by area children that will make all children and families feel welcome.

Exploring Our Backyard

When the 345-acre former Ottawa Sands property in Ferrysburg became available, the Ottawa County Parks Department and the Land Conservancy of West Michigan joined forces to secure funding to purchase the land. Because of their partnership, the site is well on its way to being permanently protected and preserved.

The park will be the final link in a 2,000-acre chain of parks and natural areas stretching from Hoffmaster Park to the Grand River. It will give residents and visitors to our community access to trails and an 80-acre lake for hiking, camping, swimming, fishing, and kayaking—all along the north bank of the Grand River.

Your gift to the Greatest Needs Fund makes this possible.

Together we can continue making a positive impact in our community—today and in the future. Your generous contribution to the Greatest Needs Fund today allows us to invest in our community in a flexible and impactful way that addresses a broad range of critical needs, including future needs that cannot be anticipated.

We consider it our duty to raise awareness of critical issues facing our community, like providing education to students of all ages and preserving our natural resources. We work to connect you to the causes you care about, and we partner with local for-impact organizations to do the most good and positively impact our community.

Your gift to the Greatest Needs Fund helps us continue to do good work in our community. Our future is what we envision and work together to achieve. Our legacy will be what we accomplish together. 

We ask you to please give generously.



Thank you for your support.