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U.S. Venture Open Adds $4.13 Million to Fight Poverty

The annual U.S. Venture Open — the nation’s single largest one-day charitable event dedicated to ending poverty — raised a record $4.13 million for the Basic Needs Giving Partnership on Aug. 8. An Olympic-gold cheer goes out to U.S. Venture and the many volunteers, sponsors and golfers.

The Basic Needs Giving Partnership is supported by the U.S. Venture Fund for Basic Needs within the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, the  J. J. Keller Foundation, Inc., and other community partners. Grants are awarded through the community foundations in the Fox Valley, Oshkosh and Green Bay. The money is invested at the three community foundations to keep growing and funding efforts to get people out of poverty and prevent them from entering into poverty in northeast Wisconsin.

This is the 33rd annual U.S. Venture Open and, in three decades, the event has raised more than $42.45 million with more than $5.56 million in new grant commitments last year alone to 200 organizations nonprofits in northeast Wisconsin, including $3.5 million in the Fox Valley Region. The Basic Needs Giving Partnership is getting results.

This is also the first year every dollar raised will go directly to grant-making within the next year. In past years, grant-making was done from a percentage of the endowment as it grew to create long-term sustainability.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the J. J. Keller Foundation’s participation as a giving partner, making donations totaling $8 million over the last decade. The J. J. Keller Foundation matches the grant-making budget of the fund, annually donating up to $800,000.

More than 1,100 attendees, including 861 golfers, teed off at six regional golf courses to raise money. This year’s celebrity guest of honor was the most decorated Olympian of all time, Michael Phelps. When he retired from competitive swimming at the age of 31, Phelps had collected a total of 23 gold, three silver and two bronze medals.

Those seeking grants can learn more.

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