Back to Basics Campaign to Help Struggling Students and Families

The Community Foundation of NCW is partnering with School Districts in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties to host an online fundraising campaign September 1st – 30th called “Back to Basics” to support students and families who are struggling as they navigate remote schooling during the pandemic.

“When schools had to close in the spring due to Covid, we learned that many students and their families were struggling with a wide variety of needs” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director. “Some students had to care for their younger siblings while their parents worked and couldn’t even think about online school, other students had parents lose jobs and couldn’t put food on the table. We knew we had to step in and help these families with basic needs to get them through the school year and help those kids continue to learn.”

The Community Foundation has kick started the campaign with $55,000 that will be allocated to each district based on the number of low-income students served.

Donations from the public will be accepted throughout September at, and 100% will go to the school district(s) of choice. School counselors, teachers, and family advocates will help identify students in need and work with their districts to distribute the funds directly to families for food, clothing, personal hygiene, sanitary products, and other basic needs.

“If these students and families don’t have to worry about basics, they can put more energy toward adapting to this new online learning environment” said Stipe. “If the community comes together, we can help our neighbors get through this hard time. A little bit goes a long way if we all give what we can.”

For more information and to donate, visit Check donations can be mailed to: CFNCW 9 S Wenatchee Ave, Wenatchee WA 98801.

Community Foundation of NCW Awards $734,852 in Scholarships

The Community Foundation of NCW has awarded $734,852 in scholarships to 204 students across North Central Washington – the largest distribution of scholarships to date.

The Community Foundation manages over 110 scholarships established by individuals, families, and businesses who are passionate about helping students achieve their college and career goals. Each scholarship is unique, with varying criteria set by the donor.

“We have scholarship opportunities for all types of students” said Julie Mott, the foundation’s scholarship program specialist. “Some support students going into a specific field, some support students who have overcome obstacles, others support students who demonstrate exceptional character and community service. Most of our scholarships want to help students who have significant financial need.”

This year, the foundation received 3,277 applications that were reviewed by over 250 volunteers who serve on scholarships committees. “Our volunteers do an amazing service to the foundation and these students, as they read dozens or sometimes hundreds of applications and thoughtfully determine the award finalist” said Mott. “We are so grateful for their time and commitment to help our local students.”

Since 2003, over $6 million in scholarships from the foundation have been awarded, and annual award disbursements continue to grow each year. Contributing to this growth are new scholarship funds being established each year as well as the investment returns on the funds, which are endowed to enable disbursement of scholarship awards in perpetuity.

$50,000 Endowment Grant Awarded, New Grants Support Nonprofit Recovery


The Community Foundation of NCW has awarded a $50,000 Endowment Grant to Upper Valley MEND (Meeting Each Need with Dignity), a nonprofit dedicated to meeting the housing, hunger, and healthcare needs in the Upper Wenatchee Valley.

The Endowment Grant is awarded to a well-established nonprofit organization that has strong leadership and are positioned to grow the endowment. The grant establishes an Endowment Fund at the foundation, providing long-term sustainability for a nonprofit by dispersing a portion of the fund annually while the principal is invested for growth. Through investment and additional donations to the fund, the annual payout increases, creating a dependable stream of income.

“Over the last 30 years, our community has built a wonderful organization to support basic needs and community connection in the Upper Valley” said UVMEND Executive Director, Kaylin Bettinger. “This endowment grant will ensure Upper Valley MEND services will be available for those in need long into the future.”

The foundation was faced with the tough task to narrow down the many impressive grant applications to 3 strong finalists, including Chelan-Douglas CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) and the Women’s Resource Center. Each finalist had an opportunity to present to the Endowment Grant Committee over Zoom.

“Each of the finalists are truly extraordinary organizations doing critical work in our communities” said Claire Oatey, the foundation’s director of community grants. “This is always one of the hardest decisions for our Board to make, but UVMEND was chosen because of their strong board and staff leadership, their readiness to grow the endowment, and clear vision for how this opportunity will take the organization to the next level.”


In response to the effects Covid-19 has had on our nonprofit partners, the Community Foundation has retooled its regular grant-making programs to better serve their needs. Grants are open to 501c3 nonprofit organizations in Chelan, Douglas and Okanogan counties.

Helping Hands 2.0 Grant

  • Supports 501(c)3 nonprofits and public agencies in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties providing critical safety-net needs for community members(including food security, housing support, physical and mental health, safety, and pre-K childcare) due to the socio-economic and health impacts of the pandemic in our region.
  • There is no cap on funding requests.
  • Awarded monthly.
  • Applications received by the 1st of the month will reviewed and awarded by the 31st until fund run out.

Nonprofit Reemergence Grant

  • Temporary grant program to support 501(c)3 charitable organizations located in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties as they recover from the current public health crisis and adapt their operations for future viability.
  • Organizations may request funding for up to 10% of their current organizational budget with a maximum grant request of $20,000.
  • Awards will be made quarterly through July 2021.

Woods Family Music and Arts Fund

  • Temporarily shifting its focus this year to support general operating grants for nonprofit arts organizations in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties (excluding the Methow Valley).
  • Schools or fiscally sponsored programs are ineligible.
  • Special consideration will be given to organizations that have creatively adapted their programs and services to foster the local music and arts culture during the public health crisis.
  • Organizations may request funding for up to $5,000 in general operating support.
  • Application deadline is September 30.

NPI Goes Virtual with Nonprofit Reemergence Series

The Nonprofit Practices Institute (NPI), a partnership of the Community Foundation of NCW and the Icicle Fund, offers training and professional development throughout the year to nonprofit organizations across North Central Washington. With gatherings now on hold, NPI has gone virtual, and is offering a free, virtual learning series to nonprofits on reemergence strategies.

The Nonprofit Reemergence Learning Series is designed to provide insight and practical tools for an organization’s strength and resilience during challenging times. The series will be delivered via Zoom once a month from July to October and will cover:

  • Leading in Times of Uncertainty (July)
  • Nonprofit Financial Strategy in Response to Crisis (August)
  • Six Superpowers of a Small Nonprofit Fundraiser (September)
  • Network leadership: Collaboration for Greater Impact (October)
  • Next steps Community Conversation (October)

The series will be moderated by Nancy Bacon, a nonprofit educator who led Washington Nonprofits’ learning program for eight years. Nancy will build connections and engage you in the conversation, so you complete the series ready to lead your organization in new and powerful ways.

“We are really excited to offer this virtual alternative for our region’s nonprofits” said Claire Oatey, the foundation’s director of community grants and NPI program developer. “We customized this series with Nancy based on many conversations with our nonprofit partners over the last few months on their needs and struggles. This series will give them practical tools, resources, strategies, and perhaps a little hope for staying strong and viable during these trying times.”

Participants are invited to attend the full series, as they will build upon another, but will register for each part of the series separately. All presentations begin at 9:00am and are 2-3 hours in length.


Statewide “All in WA” Campaign for Matches Donations for NCW Covid Relief

The Community Foundation of NCW announces its participation is the All in WA statewide fundraising campaign for Covid relief.

The campaign launched on Wednesday May 27th with six All in WA flags raised across the state, including one at Pybus Public Market representing all of North Central Washington that was raised by Jesus Hernandez, board trustee with the Community Foundation of NCW.

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos will match individual donations under $1 million to All in WA donations, up to $25 million. Donations through All in WA support selected Cause and Community Funds, including the Community Foundation of NCW. These donations will be directed to the Helping Hands Grant Fund, providing emergency relief to nonprofits across the NCW region. Over $92,000 has been awarded in Covid relief grants across NCW and will continue until funds are expended.

“This is a great opportunity for us to join our friends and partners across the state in a huge initiative to bring people together and leverage matching funds for our region” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director. “We are so grateful the effort includes Community Foundations so donations can go directly to our communities.”

To promote the effort and raise funds, All in WA is hosting a live-streaming benefit concert on Wednesday, June 10th at 7:00pm that includes Pearl Jam, Macklemore, Brandi Carlile, Ciara, Russell Wilson, The Black Tones, Dave Matthews, Sir Mix-A-Lot, Pete Carroll, Mary Lambert, Joel McHale, Ben Gibbard, and Allen Stone with the full lineup to be announced at a later date.


Community Foundation of NCW Awards 3rd Round of Covid Relief

The Community Foundation of NCW has awarded $21,692 in its third round of Helping Hands Grants to nonprofits struggling with the effects of Covid-19.

The Helping Hands Grant provides emergent funding to nonprofits in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties and has expanded its criteria to those impacted by Covid. Awards are disbursed every other week until funds are expended.

Over $286,000 has been donated to the Helping Hands Grant since March 1st, including contributions by Microsoft, MJ Murdock Charitable Trust, the Seattle Foundation, Perteet, Inc., Cairdeas Winery, and Icicle Brewing Company.

“We are so grateful to the generous individuals and businesses that are contributing to these emergency funding efforts right now” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director.

“We’re continuing to talk with our nonprofit partners and leaders across the region about what recovery will look like as well, and having this funding is crucial to keeping many organizations afloat as we start to plan for that next phase.”


  1. Chelan Community Nurse Program – $3,000 Adapting services for social distancing and preparing for an increase of in-home services as shelter in place eases
  2. Entiat Food Bank – $3,000 Food security improvements
  3. Ingalls Creek Enrichment Center – $1,230 Commercial freezer to store food for Upper Valley MEND’s gleaning program, which provides fresh produce for food bank
  4. Methow Arts Alliance – $3,000 resources for NCW art teachers and home delivery kits; recouping direct costs from cancelled events
  5. Okanogan Behavioral Health Care – $3,000 Mental illness/substance abuse recovery program delivery adaptations during Covid and recouping direct costs from cancelled event
  6. Okanogan Valley Orchestra and Chorus – $2,462 Recoup direct costs from cancelled concert
  7. Tonasket Food Bank – $3,000 Serving 58% more individuals/families needing food
  8. Wenatchee Valley Museum and Cultural Center – $3,000 Recoup direct costs from cancelled events

For more information on how to apply, donate, and other resources, visit

Community Foundation of NCW Awards 2nd Round of Covid Relief

The Community Foundation of NCW has awarded $15,927 in its second round of Helping Hands Grants to nonprofits struggling with the effects of Covid-19.

The Helping Hands Grant provides emergent funding to nonprofits in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties and has expanded its criteria to those impacted by Covid. Awards are disbursed every other week until funds are expended.

Over $245,000 has been donated to the Helping Hands Grant since March 1st. These donations are imperative for the foundation to continue awarding funds.

“We cannot thank these donors enough for their generosity during this time” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director. “We were able to seed this fund with $45,000, which has already been awarded in this first month. We know this will be a marathon, so these contributions are crucial to continue supporting our nonprofit partners and the important work they do across our region as more needs arise.”


  • Methow at Home – $2,028 Free memberships for 6 aging in place residents during Covid, such as food delivery and phone buddy system
  • Methow Housing Trust – $1,500 Support for providing Covid-related housing resources to individuals in need
  • Numerica PAC – $3,000 Recoup direct costs from cancelled event and production of digital campaign for 2021 season
  • Office Moms and Dads – $1,804 Basic needs, therapeutic toys, and increased recruitment for volunteers who provide companionship to children during office visits that are transitioning to foster care
  • Okanogan Land Trust – $1,035 Updated equipment for safe remote work
  • Okanogan Regional Humane Society – $2,560 Recoup direct costs from cancelled event
  • PowerHouse Ministries – $1,000 Sanitation and supplies for day shelter for homeless individuals
  • The Cove – $3,000 Support for increased individuals and families needing food and financial help

VIEW all Helping Hands Grant Awards

DONATE to the Helping Hands Grant Fund

APPLY for a Helping Hands Grant

Community Foundation of NCW Awards $89,750 in Covid-19 Relief to Nonprofits

The Community Foundation of NCW has awarded $89,750 to 24 nonprofits across the region who have been significantly impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. The funds come from the Helping Hands Grant, the Board of Trustees Fund, and donations from the public.

“When we started to see the effect the pandemic was having on our nonprofit community, we knew we had to use our resources to help” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director. “We expanded the criteria for our Helping Hands grant – which typically funds emergent needs – to include issues our nonprofit partners are facing with Covid-19”.

The foundation also utilized its Board of Trustee fund, where board members donate to this “rainy day” type fund. The Board approved using $55,000 toward supporting nonprofits that provide vital services such as access to food and rental assistance. Agencies receiving a distribution from this fund include: Chelan-Douglas Community Action Council,  Okanogan County Community Action Council,  Room One (Methow Valley), Serve Wenatchee, Salvation Army (Wenatchee), Children’s Home Society of Wenatchee, Safety, Advocacy, Growth, and Empowerment (SAGE), and Chelan Valley Hope.

“We are looking at all of our resources right now and where they can help the most” said Stipe. “We are being thoughtful about what we can do right now, but also be poised to support the region in the long run. We know from our past experiences from the recession and from wildfire disaster recoveries, the needs of our communities will likely increase.”

Over $100,000 has been donated by Community Foundation donors and the public. “We’re so grateful for those in our community who are able to give what they can and help those in need right now” said Stipe.


  • Garden Terrace Senior Living – $1,600 Individual meal service during dining room closure
  • Icicle Creek Center for the Arts – $3,000 Recoup direct costs from cancelled event
  • Life Choices – $300 Recoup direct costs from cancelled event
  • Methow Valley Citizens Council – $800 Recoup direct costs from cancelled event
  • Mobile Meals of Wenatchee – $1,700 Increased meal delivery service for home-bound citizens
  • North Valley Hospital District – $3,000 Supplies to 3D-print 200 N95 masks with reusable inserts
  • Okanogan County Community Coalition – $3,000 Fabricating PPE including masks and gowns for local healthcare workers and emergency responders
  • Omak Food Bank – $3,000 Increased food bank demands
  • The Community for the Advancement of Family Education (CAFÉ) – $3,000 Outreach to Spanish-speaking community on Covid-19 and available resources
  • Thrive Chelan Valley – $3,000 Weekend food support for Chelan/Manson students
  • TwispWorks Foundation – $3,000 Connecting small local businesses impacted to resources
  • Wellness Place – $3,000 Gas cards for patients needing to travel to appointments and increased costs for shipping nutritional food
  • Wenatchee River Institute – $750 Recoup direct costs from cancelled event
  • Wenatchee Valley Dispute Resolution Center – $1,000 Technology and equipment to support the move to Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) mediation services
  • Wenatchee Valley Humane Society – $3,000 Pet Food Pantry that provides for low-income pet owners
  • Wenatchee Valley Symphony Association – $1,600 Recoup direct costs from cancelled event

The foundation is accepting donations to the Helping Hands Grant Fund and hopes to continue awarding grants every other week until funds are expended.

For more information on grants, resources, and how to donate, visit our Covid-19 Response Support page.

Community Foundation of NCW Expands Grant for COVID-19 Response

In response to the COVID-19 heath crisis, the Community Foundation of NCW has expanded its Helping Hands Grant Program to include supporting nonprofits organizations significantly impacted by the pandemic.

The Helping Hands Grant Program provides financial resources to nonprofit organizations in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties faced with unexpected and emergent needs. The foundation’s Board of Trustees has given authority to expand the existing criteria and application process to better respond to nonprofits’ current and imminent needs.

“We know that this is going to be a very difficult time for our nonprofit community and those they serve” said Gil Sparks, the foundation’s board chair.  “It is our hope that broadening the criteria for this grant will help our nonprofit community continue to provide critical services to our communities and help weather this storm.”

NCW communities are already beginning to feel the short and long term effects impacting our workforce, economies, and families who were already struggling with affordable housing, affordable child care, and food insecurity. The foundation has a long history of supporting nonprofits serving those vulnerable populations during times of crisis.

“We are still intensely aware of the lessons learned from the 2008 recession and the devastating wildfires from 2014 and 2015 – recovery from this outbreak is going to require significant resources for the long term” said Beth Stipe, executive director. “The Staff and Board know that we need to prepare for a marathon, not just a sprint. The expansion of this grant funding is setting those preparations in motion.”

The foundation has been connecting and working with nonprofit partners across the region to understand their needs. “We need to adjust our program to be responsive.” Said Claire Oatey, director of community grants.  “We anticipate the grant application to be open very soon. In the meantime, we are reaching out to our donors and the community to donate to the Helping Hands Grant and help us provide additional grants than our current budget allows.”

The Helping Hands Grant has been seeded with $45,000 from the Community Foundation. All contributions to the Helping Hands Grant will help to provide the financial resources to meet the current and future recovery needs of our region.




Community Foundation Accepting Applications for Stronger Schools Grant

The Community Foundation of NCW is now accepting applications for its Stronger Schools grant, open to public schools and School Districts serving Pre-K-12th grade students in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties.

The grant offers up to $5,000 for programs that enrich school experiences for students, support teacher development, and other actives that allow schools to better achieve their goals.

Only one application may be submitted per school and can include several different projects by teachers, staff, etc.; however, each school can only be awarded up to $5,000. School Districts can apply separately with a $5,000 cap as well.

Over $462,000 has been disbursed to schools across the region since the grant program started in 2011. Last year, $70,000 was disbursed in Stronger Schools grants.

“Historically, we funded schools and nonprofits from a single grant program, but as our resources grew, we saw an opportunity to offer a program that met our public schools’ specific needs” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director. “It allows us to focus our efforts on helping make a significant impact for education in our region.”

Grants are awarded in June and will support the 2020-2021 school year.


Community Foundation of NCW | 9 S Wenatchee Ave, Wenatchee WA 98801
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