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Bright Idea Fund Grants Fiscal Year 2020 – 2021

The Bright Idea Fund is focused on positioning nonprofits to successfully sustain and respond to their mission demands during this challenging time by providing planning grants, bridge grants and spark grants.

Click these categories to view the Bright Idea Fund grants awarded:                 

                                                                                                                              ← Back to the right Idea Fund Page

Purpose: To enhance appreciation of and participation in visual, musical, performing and literary arts, history and other cultural experiences.

  • PRIORITY 1: Increasing access and inclusion — Create thoughtful ways to include people who ordinarily do not or cannot participate.
  • PRIORITY 2: Educating children and youth — Develop opportunities for school-aged children and youth to understand the value of artistic or cultural experiences, especially those who ordinarily do not or cannot participate.

Grants in Fiscal 2020 – 2021

Paper Industry International Hall of Fame, Inc. – $25,000 to provide unrestricted general operating support to enable the organization to continue its important mission as a destination for life-long scientific exploration and discovery amidst the challenges of the COVID 19 crisis.
Priority: Increasing access and inclusion

Girl Scouts of the Northwestern Great Lakes – $5,000 to support Girl Scouts Hispanic Heritage Month Patch Program.
Priority: Increasing access and inclusion

The Building for Kids – $25,000 to provide general operating support to help the organization continue its important mission to empower children, engage parents, and energize the community.
Priority: Educating children and youth

Friends of the Endries Performing Arts Center – $2,000 to sponsor local, virtual National Philanthropy Day professional development opportunities for nonprofit staff members and the philanthropy awards presentation in fall of 2020.
Priority: 
Increasing access and inclusion

Purpose: Reduce the number of people in our community who are living in poverty by using innovative or collaborative approaches to address root causes.

  • PRIORITY 1: Self-sufficiency — Support affordable educational and training opportunities or programs that remove barriers to earning a family-sustaining income.
  • PRIORITY 2: Children and youth — Address barriers to future success, including risk-related behaviors, mental health challenges, bullying, abuse and neglect, and opportunity gaps for children and youth.
  • PRIORITY 3: Community Education and Awareness — Educate the community about critical issues or potential solutions related to root causes of poverty.

Grants in Fiscal 2020 – 2021

Foundations for Living – $25,000 to enable the organization to continue to provide vital services for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness amidst the continued challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
PRIORITY: Self-sufficiency

Hope Clinic and Care Center, Inc. $25,000 to help the organization weather the financial challenges of the COVID-19 crisis and to continue their critical mission to improve health and well-being for our most vulnerable community members.
PRIORITY: Self-sufficiency

N.E.W. Mental Health Connection, Inc. – $25,000 to support of a Co-Responder Community Response Team pilot effort.
Priority:
Community Education and Awareness

Rise Together – $5,000 to pilot an online digital training program to help teachers and youth workers better engage and connect with youth around issues of mental health and substance use through a series of 6 modules.
Priority: Children and youth

Life Tools Foundation Inc. – $5,000 to expand the Shoulders to Stand on program, which helps local high school girls overcome barriers to pursuing post-secondary education, to two additional high schools in the fall of 2020.
Priority: Children and youth

Purpose: Build strong communities by supporting government, business, philanthropic and/or nonprofit sectors, along with residents, to improve the places in which they live, work and play.

  • PRIORITY 1: Neighborhood Development — Enrich local neighborhoods by building connections and bringing people together to address local issues, with particular attention to neighborhoods with significant opportunities for improvement.
  • PRIORITY 2: Community Partnerships — Support communitywide projects or planning efforts involving partnerships between people and organizations in the private, public and nonprofit sectors.
  • PRIORITY 3: Community Education and Awareness — Educate the community about issues key to improving quality of life.

Grants in Fiscal 2020 – 2021

Fox Cities Book Festival, Inc. – $5,000 to Fox Cities Reads 2022.

Elisha D. Smith Public Library – $5,000 to the Learning Lab.

Casa Hispana – $5,000 to support costs associated with re-locating the Casa Hispana office to the LEAVEN Resource Center in Menasha.

Little Chute Public Library – $5,000 to the Book-a-bike program.

IndUS of Fox Valley – $2,500 to support the Rhythms of the World cultural performances on September 18, 2021, during the downtown Appleton Farm Market.

Celebrate Diversity Fox Cities – $1,500 to support the “We All Call This Home” event August 21, 2021 at Jefferson Park in Menasha. 

The Samaritan Counseling Center of the Fox Valley, Inc. – $1,500 to sponsor the Ethics in Business Summit, which fosters a culture of integrity at work and in our community.
Priority: Neighborhood Development

United Way Fox Cities – $4,400 to support the addition of a project coordinator to prepare, lead and follow-up with Fox Cities Covid-19 Community Solutions Team meeting participants through Dec. 2020.
Priority: Community partnerships

NeighborWorks Green Bay – $1,500 to support the videographers and videograhpy for the lemonade stands for the Jefferson Park Neighborhood: By Young People, for the Community.

Association of Fundraising Professionals-NE WI – $1,500 to support the AFP National Philanthropy Day Event as a Philanthropy Partnership Sponsor for the next three years ($1,500/year) in collaboration with the Greater Green Bay and Oshkosh Area Community Foundations.
Priority: Community Education and Awareness

WOMO – $15,000 to support the 2020 and 2021 Women’s Fund luncheon
Priority: Community Education and Awareness

Purpose: Support creative, economically feasible solutions that benefit broad segments of the population to improve the well-being of current and future generations.

Priority 1: Access and Inclusion — Provide opportunities and remove barriers so all people can experience nature and learn the importance of a healthy environment.

Priority 2: Community Education & Awareness — Improve environmental education and increase public awareness about environmental topics affecting our communities, homes and places of business.

Priority 3: Well-Being — Preserve, protect and enhance the region’s natural resources in ways that will improve the well-being of current and future residents.

Grants in Fiscal 2020-2021

Navarino Nature Center – $25,000 to provide unrestricted general operating support to enable the organization to continue its important mission of providing environmental education and wellness opportunities, as well as promoting renewable energy, amidst the challenges of the COVID 19 crisis.

Northeast Wisconsin Land Trust – $25,000 to support the “Conservation that Connects” campaign to be directed towards the staffing and communication tool aspects of the campaign and leveraged as a matching challenge. Not to be used for endowment building.

FC Environmental Learning Campus/Bubolz Nature Preserve – $25,000 to provide unrestricted general operating support to help the organization weather the COVID-19 crisis and continue to be a place where our community can come and spend time in nature, when they need it the most. 

Friends of the 1000 Islands, Inc. – $3,000 to hire a temporary Goat Project Manager (Goatherd) for 2-3 weeks, twice a year to take on goat maintenance responsibilities previously handled by volunteers and coordinate educational programs with Thousand Islands staff, community and schools.
Priority: Well being

Purpose: Strengthen the internal functioning of nonprofit organizations so that they can effectively serve our community.

  • PRIORITY 1: Organizational Planning — Encourage and support organizations to plan for change, expansion or partnerships to fulfill their missions more effectively.
  • PRIORITY 2: Capacity Building — Help organizations implement changes in leadership, management or outreach capacity arising from systematic planning.
  • PRIORITY 3: Education and Training — Provide opportunities for nonprofit leaders to become effective in fulfilling organizational missions.

Grants in Fiscal 2020 – 2021

Wild Ones Natural Landscapers, Ltd. – $3,600 to sponsor its upcoming conference.

World Relief Fox Valley – $25,000 designated to support the addition of an Afghan Refugee Resettlement Specialist position in anticipation of the 100+ Afghan refugees who will be resettled in the Appleton and Oshkosh areas.

Catalpa Health, Inc.– $25,000 to expand the care management team.

Fox Valley Memory Project – $15,000 to contribute to the local funding requirement that supports implementation of new programs focused on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services/Administration for Community Living’s Alzheimer’s Disease Programs Initiative.

NPLI – Non Profit Leadership Initiative – $50,000 to support the initiative’s efforts to provide Fox Valley nonprofit organizations with resources to develop strong executive leaders and board members to help the organizations achieve their missions. 

Fox Cities Performing Arts Center – $5,000 to support diversity, equity and inclusion trainings for staff and board members.

Bergstrom-Mahler Museum of Glass – $5,000 to help provide assistance with defining our organizational DEI strategy and goals, and bringing attention to strategic institutional change efforts and business practices that reflect an active commitment to diversity and inclusion. Also allowing them to prepare for reaccreditation by American Alliance of Museums.

The Building for Kids – $5,000 to support an EDI organization assessment through Us2 Behavioral Health. Us2 will conduct an EDI (Equity, Diversity & Inclusion) climate assessment primarily on the existing mindsets and skillsets of the Client’s Staff and Leadership teams across various sites and functions.

Association of Fundraising Professionals-NE WI – $1,310 for our sponsorship support of the May 2021 nonprofit staff and board training event.

Greater Fox Cities Area Habitat for Humanity – $25,000 to help close the financial gap tremendously, ensuring that we can continue to fulfill our mission and families can attain homeownership or safely stay in existing homes.

Foundations For Living – $500 to support Census outreach strategy in Waupaca.
Priority: Capacity building

Association of Fundraising Professionals, NE WI – $1,000 to support the 2020 NE Wisconsin National Philanthropy Day event.
Priority: Education and training

Foundations For Living – $150,000 multi-year grant to support the initiative’s efforts to provide Fox Valley nonprofit organizations with resources to develop strong executive leaders and board members to help the organizations achieve their missions.
Priority: Capacity building