The Arizona Community Foundation and its donors have announced grant, scholarship, and loan distributions for the calendar year.
Between Jan. 1 and Dece. 31, 2020, a record total of $183,125,928 was awarded from funds of the Arizona Community Foundation and its six statewide Affiliates in Cochise, Flagstaff, the Gila Valley, Sedona, Yavapai County, and Yuma.
Over $94 million of the year’s total was dedicated to supporting 7,173 small businesses and nonprofit organizations impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a press release.
These grants were funded through ACF’s ongoing partnerships with Maricopa County, the Phoenix IDA, and the cities of Phoenix, Peoria, Chandler, Surprise, Gilbert, Yuma, and Tempe.
The remaining $89 million in grants, scholarships, and nonprofit distributions were awarded in five strategic priority areas: Health Innovations, Community Improvement & Development, Environment & Sustainability, Arts & Culture, and Quality Education.
A total of $41 million was awarded to 3,228 organizations and programs in the areas of health, health care, medical research, and a variety of human services. Among the distributions were: $60,000 from the David R. Sellers Foundation to the Arizona Cancer Foundation for Children for general support and $212,500 from the Werner Family Charitable Fund to support Crohn’s Disease research.
Community Improvement & Development
A total of $8.8 million was awarded to 811 organizations and programs in this category, which includes housing, community and neighborhood development, financial literacy training, legal assistance, and crime prevention programs. Among the grants awarded were: two grants totaling $22,000 from the L & M Sky Fund to Verde Valley Wheel Fun supporting Sedona Trail Keepers and Mountainview School Bike Park; $6,250 from the Fine Family Fund in support of DigDeep’s Navajo Water Project; and $500 to both Workers Circle and Southern Poverty Law Center from the Dilly Dally Fund to provide general support in response to recent public protests, law enforcement actions, and racial issues occurring in communities across the country.
Environment & Sustainability
A total of $2.3 million was awarded to 440 organizations and programs in the areas of environmental education, renewable resources, conservation, and animal welfare. Among the distributions were: $100,000 to the Desert Botanical Garden for general operating support; $7,500 from The Two Worlds Community Foundation to Lucky Paws Shelter for general support; and $2,500 from the Goddard Family Fund to the Grand Canyon Trust for general use.
Arts & Culture
A total of $4.9 million was awarded to 499 artistic and cultural organizations across Arizona. Among the grants were: $27,000 from the MERI Foundation to the Phoenix Symphony Association for general support; $5,000 from For the Love of Conor Foundation to The UBU Project for general support; and $101,599 from the Burton Family Foundation and other funds in support of Rosie’s House capital campaign for its new Digital Creativity Center.
During 2020, a total of $18 million was awarded in scholarships and education-related grants. Among the grants were: $25,000 from the Eternal Now Fund to Mindfulness First for general support; $5,000 of unrestricted support from the Nancy and David Weeks Fund to the Literacy Volunteers of Coconino County; and five grants totaling $20,000 from Real Engagement Through Active Philanthropy to Black Mother’s Forum, Inc., Strong Ties, Hustle USA, TigerMountain Foundation, and SOUNDS Academy through the giving circle’s 2020 grant cycle.
College scholarships accounted for $4.9 million of the year’s total and were awarded for the benefit of 1,646 students pursuing higher education. College scholarships are awarded to Arizona students to attend a wide range of colleges, universities, and technical schools in Arizona and across the United States.
In addition to these grants, 121 nonprofit organizations with agency endowments managed by the Arizona Community Foundation received their annual distributions, accounting for the remaining $8.3 million distributed during the year.
The Arizona Community Foundation invested an additional $375,000 through its Affordable Housing Predevelopment Loan Fund. Trellis, UMOM, and ArtSpace received interest-free loans to help jump-start their affordable housing projects.
The $183 million awarded across all categories represents 15,285 grants, scholarships, loans, and nonprofit distributions, the largest dollar amount and number of grants over any single year in ACF’s 43-year history.
Some grants are awarded at the discretion of the Arizona Community Foundation with input from board committees and diverse community panels, while others are awarded through donor advice and municipal authority guidance.
All grants are approved or ratified by ACF’s Philanthropic Services Committee whose members include ACF board representatives and other community leaders.