Community Foundation Receives $1.7M Bequest to Benefit Methow Valley

Ken Westman and his beloved dog, Snoopy.

Ken Westman and his beloved dog, Snoopy.

The Community Foundation of NCW has received a $1.7M bequest that will support Methow Valley nonprofits in perpetuity through the Methow Valley Fund.

The bequest came from Ken Westman, a long-time Methow Valley resident who cared deeply about providing charitable resources to benefit the Methow Valley and its citizens. Throughout his lifetime, Ken was an active participant with many local organizations that served to enhance the quality of life in the Methow Valley. In addition to financial support, Ken devoted much of his time to serving on committees, as a volunteer on boards and in leadership positions. His lifetime of service and legacy in this community is legendary.

The bequest secures an endowment that supports the Methow Valley Fund, a fund of the Community Foundation of NCW which provides a competitive grant program benefiting Methow Valley nonprofits. Currently, the fund awards over $60,000 in grants each year. This bequest will significantly increase the amount of funding available for grants to Methow nonprofits.

An endowment is one of the most significant ways to leave a legacy in your community. The original gift is invested by the foundation and grows over time. An annual distribution is made available each year to provide for grants to charitable organizations.

“This bequest will have a significant impact on the quality of life for the Methow Valley for generations” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director. “Ken was always so kind and generous. We knew he was planning to leave a gift to benefit the Valley he loved, but we were stunned at the magnitude. I can only imagine his delight and much loved laugh, knowing the surprise he pulled on all of us!  We are honored to be able to continue Ken’s generosity and to support the Valley and the many causes that make it such a special place, forever!”

Learn more about how you can leave a legacy in your community.

Give Methow Raises over a Half Million for Methow Valley Nonprofits

The Community Foundation of NCW’s Give Methow campaign has raised $522,204 for 36 Methow Valley nonprofits – over $200,000 more than last year.

Give Methow is an annual crowdfunding campaign hosted by the Community Foundation during the month of October to build awareness of nonprofit work that benefits the Methow Valley and provide an easy way for anyone to support their work.

“We are blown away by the incredible support of Give Methow this year” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director. “It’s been a challenging year for our region’s nonprofits, and the people who love the Methow Valley have stepped up to give these organizations some sustainability and hope.”

Any 501c3 public charity in the Methow Valley is eligible to participate in Give Methow to raise funds for a specific program or general operations. Each organization serves a unique and meaningful purpose for improving the quality of life for Methow Valley residents – from the arts to environment, health and housing, to education, recreation, and community services.

An anonymous donor seeded a $20,000 “Give to All” stretch pool to incentivize and bolster fundraising efforts. The Community Foundation added $10,000 and the public donated $33,866 totaling $63,866 that was disbursed among all nonprofits equally. However this year, several organizations decided to “gift” their portion back to the pool in the spirit of togetherness, providing additional funding to others.

“When we started planning for the campaign it was powerfully clear how much we are all in this together. We wanted to create an opportunity for a rising tide that would lift all boats.” said Betsy Cushman, Executive Director of Methow Recycles and a Board Trustee of the Community Foundation.

“All of the organizations decided to tell our stories together through weekly videos that we shared with our supporters. Our work and our community depend upon each other, and we wanted to share that message and recognize each of our parts in shaping the future of the Methow Valley” said Cushman.

Give Methow Results

Aero Methow $19,308
American Legion $3,394
Cascadia Music $8,619
Classroom in Bloom $17,764
Confluence Gallery $8,154
Cove Methow Valley Food Bank $26,450
Evergreen MTB $10,929
Friends of the Pool $13,841
Friends of the Winthrop Public Library $21,572
Jamie’s Place $16,164
Little Star $17,015
Loup Loup Ski Foundation $10,104
Methow Arts Alliance $12,784
Methow at Home $15,719
Methow Beaver Project (Methow Salmon Recovery) $9,469
Methow Conservancy $32,230
Methow Housing Trust $16,229
Methow Recycles $18,294
Methow Trails $17,700
Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival $3,779
Methow Valley Citizens Council $37,391
Methow Valley Community Center $10,154
Methow Valley Education Foundation $16,624
Methow Valley Interpretive Center $8,239
Methow Valley Nordic Ski Education Foundation $13,024
Methow Valley Riding Unlimited $11,976
Methow Watershed Foundation $7,069
Northwest Outward Bound School $4,824
Public School Funding Alliance $19,504
Room One $22,815
Shafer Museum $7,989
The Merc Playhouse $17,994
TwispWorks Foundation $21,639
Twisp Valley Grange (WA State Grange Foundation) $7,244
Winthrop Rink $11,095
Winthrop Kiwanis Foundation $5,409

Watch the Videos

$106,633 Disbursed to NCW School Districts to Help Struggling Students

We are so grateful to everyone who donated to the Back to Basics campaign to support struggling students and their families. Over $106,000 has been disbursed to ALL school districts across North Central Washington.
Earlier this spring when schools shut down, we heard stories about students having a hard time staying engaged in remote learning because they were having to care for their younger siblings or their parents lost jobs and were struggling to put food on the table. We knew we had to do something about it, and help provide some basic needs so they could focus on their education as much as possible.
The foundation’s Board of Trustees approved $55,000 to kick-start the campaign. Each district received a portion of these funds based on their district’s population and number of low-income students. Donations from the public were directed to the districts of their choice.
When we reached out to the family advocates and counselors about the campaign, they were so grateful for the added support. They see first-hand the challenges many students and their families face, especially during this year of with the pandemic and wildfire.
Those who work closely with students will identify and distribute the funds, which will be used for food, clothing, school supplies, health and personal hygiene needs, and sanitation items.
Thanks to you, they will be able to give them even greater support.
  • Brewster School District – $4,740
  • Bridgeport School District – $4,272
  • Cascade School District – $5,599
  • Cashmere School District – $3,911
  • Eastmont School District – $14,631
  • Entiat School District – $2,922
  • Lake Chelan School District – $5,094
  • Mansfield School District – $3,272
  • Manson School District – $3,709
  • Methow Valley School District – $3,103
  • Nespelem School District – $3,602
  • Okanogan School District – $4,172
  • Omak School District – $5,222
  • Orondo School District – $2,902
  • Oroville School District – $2,975
  • Palisades School District – $1,937
  • Pateros School District – $3,257
  • Stehekin School District – $2,047
  • Tonasket School District – $4,590
  • Waterville School District – $2,912
  • Wenatchee School District – $21,769
While the campaign is complete, donations can always be made to school districts or PTAs to support students who really need our help.
This year has been challenging in so many ways, but people like you who continue to help our neighbors in need across the region are truly changing lives in our communities!

Community Foundation of NCW Accepting Donations to NCW Fire Relief Fund

The Community Foundation of NCW has reopened its NCW Fire Relief Fund and is accepting donations to support fire relief and recovery efforts in Chelan, Douglas, and Okanogan counties.

Minimum donation is $10 and 100% of the funds will help individuals and families impacted by wildfire in North Central Washington. The foundation will be working with nonprofit, governmental and faith-based partners across the region who provide direct services and resources to those who have lost homes, structures, or have essential needs.

“Unfortunately, we are experienced in supporting people in our region who have been displaced or otherwise impacted by wildfire” said Beth Stipe, the foundation’s executive director. “We have long standing partnerships with agencies that are in direct contact with wildfire victims and know their needs and the resources available.”

Donations to the NCW Fire Relief Fund will largely support long-term recovery needs that are unmet by any other resource.

For victims who require immediate services such as food and shelter, contact the Red Cross Northwest at 509-670-5331.

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 | 9 S Wenatchee Ave, Wenatchee WA 98801
509-663-7716 | info@cfncw.orgfacebook twitter youtube
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