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Local projects to receive grant funding from community foundation

The Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation Board of Directors announced the grant recipients of its 2017-18 grant round. Six local projects, plus four performing arts organizations, will be receiving funding totaling $85,000. Programs focusing ...

The Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation Board of Directors announced the grant recipients of its 2017-18 grant round.

Six local projects, plus four performing arts organizations, will be receiving funding totaling $85,000. Programs focusing on workforce issues were targeted. Eligible organizations were 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations, schools or government entities serving Crow Wing and southern Cass counties.

"Our board of directors made a strategic decision to focus on workforce development projects for our grants," stated Karl Samp, executive director of the BLACF, in a news release. "These projects will help develop, attract and retain a quality workforce for our area, which is critical to the overall health and vitality of our community. We are excited to support these projects and see their impact."

The following grants were awarded:

• $30,000 for a full-time project coordinator at Bridges of Hope, whom will lead research and implementation of the Self-Healing Communities model to increase workforce and community resiliency.

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• $15,000 to support the expansion of the Career Depot program by providing additional staff support through the Brainerd Lakes Chamber of Commerce to connect area job openings with high school-age students..

• $15,000 to support the creation and delivery of four new customized training programs that meet workforce development needs through Central Lakes College.

• $6,000 for the continued implementation and growth of the Students Taking a Renewed Interest in the Value of Education (STRIVE) program at Brainerd and Pillage high schools through the Brainerd Rotary Foundation.

• $5,000 to support after-school programming at the Warehouse in Pine River, which provides youths with food, a safe place to go and positive social connections to the community.

• $5,000 to support after-school and summer programming through Cuyuna Range Youth Center Inc. in Crosby to teach resistance to violence, bullying and drug abuse as well as teach work-related skills.

• BLACF also supports several performing arts organizations enhancing the quality of life and attractiveness to potential workers, the release stated. These include: Lakes Area Music Festival, Legacy Chorale, The Center's Music in the Park and the Vocal Essence Performance at CLC.

The Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation, in affiliation with CommunityGiving, is a public charity attracting and administering charitable funds for the benefit of the local community. Since 1998, BLACF has grown to over $10.3 million in assets and awarded over $4.3 million in grants to nonprofits. CommunityGiving is a collaboration of community foundations united under a single framework to create efficiencies that maximize the impact of our donors.

The core foundations working with CommunityGiving include the Alexandria Area Community Foundation, the Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation, the Central Minnesota Community Foundation and the Willmar Area Community Foundation. Collectively, CommunityGiving administers more than 700 funds totaling more than $129 million. Learn more at www.communitygiving.org/Brainerd .

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