First Fed Community Foundation awards grants to 17 area nonprofits

Foundation gives $400,000 to organizations in Kitsap, Clallam, Jefferson and Whatcom counties

Seventeen nonprofit organizations in Kitsap, Jefferson, Clallam and Whatcom counties are the recipients of a total of $400,000 in funding from the First Federal Community Foundation.

“Having received 44 applications totaling more than $1.6 million in funding requests, and with great need in our communities, the awards process was challenging,” said Norman J. Tonina, president of the foundation’s board of directors.

“As our communities are still recovering from the toll of COVID, the foundation focused its giving on supporting youth, veterans, families and the uninsured in the face of devastating health and financial impacts of the pandemic,” Tonina said.

Recipients of First Federal Community Foundation’s spring 2022 grant awards include these organizations in Kitsap County:

Bainbridge Island Child Care Centers: $25,000 Community development grant to fund capital improvements, allowing the center to continue its programs at its current rates in a safe and secure facility.

College Success Foundation: $5,000 community support grant to provide emergency funding to low-income students in Port Angeles and Bremerton, helping to stabilize their families and supporting them to stay on track in school.

Housing Resources Bainbridge: $50,000 affordable housing grant to support 31 households with approximately 65 individuals to become owners of new, permanently affordable homes located on Bainbridge Island, near shopping, schools and parks.

Northwest Maritime Center: $80,000 economic development grant to help fund the pilot year of expanded fleet operations, supporting workforce development opportunities for Clallam, Jefferson and Kitsap County youth, and stimulating economic development and enhancing visitor experiences in Port Townsend’s business districts.

Northwest School of Wooden Boatbuilding: $30,000 economic development grant funding a dedicated financial aid officer to help incoming classes access federal student aid, veterans’ benefits, third-party scholarships, and other sources of tuition assistance, creating access to workforce skills for students from Clallam, Jefferson and Kitsap counties.

Olympic College Foundation: $35,000 economic development grant to expand the Promise Program to an additional Kitsap County high school so that 30 additional low-income students can complete their first year of college tuition-free.

The Coffee Oasis: $15,000 community support grant to respond to the Surgeon General’s December 2021 Advisory stating that “the effect of COVID on the mental health of America’s adolescents has been devastating,” by providing staff to reach out to and support 300 youth in crisis in Kitsap County.

First Fed and First Federal Community Foundation contributed over $1.1 million to nonprofits in 2021, according to the organization. Also in 2021, First Fed employees donated 4,400 hours of volunteer service in the communities First Fed serves.