Growing Together: An LGBTQ+ Fund
With the goal of creating an inclusive environment, The Community Foundation’s Growing Together: An LGBTQ Fund was established in 2001 through grants from the National Lesbian and Gay Funding Partnership and contributions from local donors. The fund supports numerous LGBTQ educational opportunities each year through the leadership of the Growing Together Fund’s Advisory Committee. The committee includes Community Foundation staff and Board members, and representatives from various local constituencies: education, law enforcement, faith communities, LGBTQ organizations, and concerned community members.
In order to identify the issues and service needs of the local LGBTQ community, the Growing Together Fund Advisory Committee developed and administered a Community Survey. The Survey was administered in 2001, 2008, and most recently in 2014. You can see the complete report about his latest survey by clicking here. Along with identifying service needs, the Survey has provided a method for gathering information about the health and well being of the LGBTQ community, local community involvement, and local support for LGBTQ individuals, i.e. organizations and sources of information for this community.
Growing Together: An LGBTQ Fund distributes grants to local organizations that focus on the principles of social justice, a civil society, and safety of our youth. On behalf of our donors, more than $300,000 in grants have been provided since 2002. An endowment fund of more than $385,000 supports local efforts focused on community inclusiveness now and in perpetuity. Select our Grantmaking History for a list of programs we have funded.
One example of a recent program funded by Growing Together is an 8-part series by KCBX Public Radio that shares stories about what it’s like to be a queer and/or trans person living in San Luis Obispo County. You may listen to and learn more about the program at In Between: Stories of Queer and Trans People of Color in SLO County.
Growing Together: An LGBTQ Fund General Grants have a cap of $5,000 per grant and are available each spring. This level is intended for more established nonprofits who can provide a track record of financial stability and consistent community involvement. Top priority issues and service needs addressed by the grants program include the following:
- Anti-LGBTQ Violence
- Housing Discrimination
- Civil Rights/Advocacy
- LGBTQ Supportive Mental Health Services
- Youth Services
Community Action Project grants specifically intended for emerging local needs projects. It is also designed for projects where almost all labor involved is voluntary, and all that is funded is materials, facility fees, and other non-labor costs. The most an organization or individual can request and receive using this application is $1,000.
Gender Sexuality Alliance Club (GSA) mini-grants of up to $500 are available for local high school, middle school, junior high school and community college projects in three broad categories:
- Advocacy Beyond Campus – Projects that reach out to the local community. Examples: providing youth speakers for community meetings, participating in Pride in the Plaza, club community service activities.
- Continuity of the Club/Sustainability – Projects that work to increase the sustainability of Gender Sexuality Alliance Clubs. Examples: increasing membership, outreach to allies, training for existing members, club presence at school wide activities such as homecoming, club buttons, stickers and t-shirts to increase awareness of club.
- Community Education – On-campus projects that reach out to club member’s fellow students. Examples: sponsoring activities such as guest speakers, film screenings, “Coming Out Day” or “Day of Silence.”
Grant Proposal Applications:
- To apply for a grant from the Growing Together Initiative Fund during our annual spring grant cycle click here.
- To apply for a Community Action Project grant in the amount of $1,000 click here.
- To apply for a Gender Sexuality Alliance grant of $500 during the school year click here.
To make a general donation to the Growing Together: An LGBTQ Fund click here.