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$834,832 Granted in 2017!

The Community Foundation for Oceana County is pleased to announce that $834,832 was granted out of Foundation funds to support a wide variety of nonprofit programs, leadership initiatives, student scholarships and community projects in 2017, representing a 42% increase in total grants over 2016.  “Understanding Oceana’s greatest needs and how we can be a catalyst for change definitely guides our work. We’ve become much more active in promoting economic development activities in the last couple years, including post-secondary education attainment, workforce development and capital investments in community projects. The support of our donors and their eagerness to partner have been fantastic,” said Foundation Board Chair Randy Wagner. The Foundation ended 2017 with $11.9 million in assets.

As part of the Community Foundation for Oceana County’s philanthropy leadership in Oceana, the Foundation will be hosting a grant workshop for Oceana residents who work or volunteer at area nonprofits.  Attendees will learn how to translate their program ideas into realistic grant request submissions that have measureable deliverables. The step-by-step application process will also be reviewed.  The workshop will be held on March 7 at 1pm at the County Services Building in Hart (844 Griswold). To RSVP for the workshop, call the Foundation office or email

Grant applications are submitted online and are due by Mar. 31, 2018. Priority areas of funding include: arts, education, health/human services, community development (including special funding for projects in Golden Township & Hesperia area), environment and emerging community needs. Because of limited undesignated resources, the Foundation can generally make only one-year grant commitments up to $3,000.  Longer term commitments may be considered for initiatives that show exceptional promise for community impact. “We know that good programs and projects sometimes take multiple funders to move them forward. We want to partner with other funders, including our own donor advisors, to help support the many needs & opportunities we have here. We encourage nonprofit staff or volunteers to give us a call to discuss your project and how we might help,” said Executive Director Tammy Carey. A full list of 2017 grant awards can be reviewed here.

“Teacher Mini Grants” are part of the Youth Advisory Council’s outreach in Oceana and the next deadline for submitting those proposals is February 16. Oceana public and private school teachers are invited to apply online off the Foundation’s web site for mini-grants of up to $250.  Due to continued fund growth generated through investments, the YAC has doubled mini-grant funding for 2018 to $5,000.

Teachers can request grants for program enhancements, special projects, expansion of an existing curriculum unit, student awards, special events, professional development, artists in residence, and parent involvement.  Grants are not awarded for basic, everyday supplies. “We connect teachers with a bit of extra financial resources they need,” explains Carey.  “YAC Members enjoy reviewing these proposals and bring so much to the deliberation table given their own learning experiences in the local schools.”  In 2017, 15 mini grants were awarded to teachers across all Oceana schools.

The Foundation envisions an Oceana where everyone has access to resources to thrive. It receives and manages contributions from citizens and organizations and has provided nearly 5 million in grants and scholarships back to the community since 1989.  More information can be obtained by calling Ms. Carey at 231-861-8335, logging onto, or following the Facebook page.