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Foundation’s affiliates assist private foundation to speed up grantmaking

Waupaca Area Food Pantry received a $3,000 grant from The Rhoades Sanford Foundation for equipment.


The Community Foundation’s five regional affiliates were established to tap into local expertise about community needs in the Brillion, Chilton, Clintonville, Waupaca and Shawano areas. As it turns out, that knowledge is valuable to other grantmakers as well.

The most recent example is the Shawano Area Community Foundation and the Waupaca Area Community Foundation, both regional affiliates of the Community Foundation for the Fox Valley Region, being called upon by the Neenah-based Rhoades Sanford Foundation to help nonprofits and their clients suffering the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Family Health La Clinica received a $3,000 grant for school-based dental care.

Director Tom Remley of Rhoades Sanford says it is the philanthropic equivalent of the 100-year storm. Nonprofits are suffering significant revenue reductions because of COVID-19 concerns making it impossible for them to provide much of their programming, while lost jobs and health care expenses are making life tougher on the people they serve.

Remley explained that Rhoades Sanford normally does one grant cycle per year at year-end.

“We felt we were compelled to step back this year and dig deeper than we ever have,” he says. They looked for a partner that knew the needs of the Waupaca and Shawano Areas and had “boots on the ground” to get the grants out quickly to nonprofits successful at addressing basic needs, like food, shelter, health, transportation and childcare.

“The Community Foundation was closer to the issues,” Remley says.

Rhoades Sanford awarded a grant of $25,000 to the Shawano Area Community Foundation and $50,000 to the Waupaca Area Community Foundation, asking that the money be re-granted to charities the grants committee and board members of the affiliates knew to be hurt by COVID-19. It took less than two months for them to get the money back out assisting residents of the Waupaca and Shawano areas.

The extra grant money definitely was happy news at the Waupaca County Senior Nutrition Program. “The three of us in the office were jumping up and down and crying tears of gratitude,” Volunteer Coordinator Denise Roman says.

“The Waupaca Area Community Foundation,” Board member Christine Anthony says “is grateful to the Rhoades Sanford Foundation for the opportunity to provide grants to Waupaca area organizations who are challenged by the demands presented because of the COVID pandemic. These are groups that have been very creative to meet the needs of the people they serve.”

Shawano Area Community Foundation Board Chair Jon Meyers says the extra grant money from Rhoades Sanford “dramatically” increases the grant support the Shawano Foundation can provide to the community.

“As a representative of the Shawano Area Community Foundation I want to express our gratitude for the generosity displayed by the Rhoades Sanford Foundation toward the Shawano area,” he says.

“I was extremely pleased with the follow-through,” Remley says, enough so that he expects this arrangement to happen again. “We would certainly now feel very confident using the Community Foundation as a conduit.”

The grants awarded on behalf of the Rhoades Sanford Foundation are as follows.

In the Shawano area:

Flo’ing with Kindness: $5,000 to supplement food purchases for residents of Gresham and families with children at Gresham schools.

Loaves and Fishes Food Pantry: $1,200 to supplement paper and personal care items and cleaning supplies for clients.

Reaching Out About Suicide and Depression Inc: $5,000 to develop creative ways to engage and educate farm communities about mental health.

Salvation Army of Shawano County: $5,800 to provide rental and utility assistance.

Tigerton Food Pantry: $4,000 to purchase food for distribution.

Trinity Family Conference of St. Vincent’s: $4,000 for financial assistance to individuals and families in need in the Wittenberg, Marion and Tigerton areas.

In the Waupaca area:

The Bread Basket: $5,000 for food and supplies.

CAP Services Inc.: $5,000 to assist people in crisis.

Catalpa Health: $3,000 to assist with mental health services for young people.

Family Health la Clinica: $3,000 for school-based dental care.

Foundations for Living: $3,000 for food and hotel stays for homeless families.

Mission Hope House of Wisconsin: $6,000 for operating support and transportation and hotel stays for clients.

Sunny Day Preschool: $2,000 for staff training.

Waupaca Area Food Pantry: $3,000 for equipment.

Waupaca County Senior Nutrition Program: $20,000 for home-delivered meals.

This the second time the Rhoades Sanford Foundation has distributed grant money through the Community Foundation affiliates. It added $20,000 to Waupaca Area Community Foundation’s and $15,000 to Shawano Area Community Foundation’s annual grantmaking in October.


The Rhoades Sanford Foundation is private foundation supports projects or programs in the areas of basic needs, culture, history and education in Door, Brown, Winnebago, Shawano, Waupaca and Outagamie counties. It formerly was the Albert and Mary Rhoades Foundation and Museum based in Waupaca. It is now stewarded by Charles and Lorinda Sanford and named to honor her parents.

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