The Community Foundation of Marshall County (CFMC) held its annual grant awards ceremony Tuesday evening on the campus of Marshalltown Community College (MCC).
The CFMC, combined with three student philanthropy groups, awarded 18 organizations 25 different grants for various community projects. The grants totaled $112,000 and the CFMC Board of Directors awarded six.
West Marshall High School Uplifting our Community with Charity (LUCC) leaders, East Marshall High School Empowering and Leading (SEAL) students, and Marshalltown High School’s Teaching & Empowering Philanthropy (STEP) students were responsible for awarding the remaining grants.
Diedre Gruendler, Chairman of the Board of Directors, opened the ceremony with a few words.
“Each year as we begin the foundation’s grant cycle, I am thrilled to learn more about the many projects and programs taking place in Marshall County. There is so much commitment and passion in our nonprofits,” Gruendler said. “Along with this excitement comes the realization that the board will have some very tough decisions to make. There just aren’t enough grants for everyone.”
While those decisions were tough, Gruendler thanked grant recipients for their commitment to making Marshall County a better place to live. Executive Director Julie Hitchins then shared her annual update on how the past year has gone for CFMC.
The 2022 mission was “to make Marshall County a place to thrive,” and Hitchins described how that was accomplished through the foundation’s four pillars: community, endowments, students, and grantmaking.
“Our community pillar is very different from most communities because unfortunately we have had three disasters in the last two years,” she said.
This pillar is backed by disaster philanthropy, and it has two different funds tied to it – the Rebuild Marshalltown Fund, which was set up for projects dealing with tornado damage, and the Marshall County Disaster Recovery Fund. , initially for pandemic relief, but expanded to include derecho recovery projects.
These funds support several projects, but matching funds for the downtown revitalization grant and money for playground equipment at Saint Francis Catholic School are just two of the many projects that the funds from the CFMC support.
“The next pillar I want to talk about is our endowments. These are funds held by organizations or individuals,” Hitchins said. “There are a lot of people in that audience who have funds with us.”
The CFMC received 90 permanent endowments over the past year, setting a new record, according to Hitchins, and as of December 31, 2021, they had $7.913 million in assets, which also broke records.
The next pillar that Hitchins talked about was the students. While she said she had enough good things to say about Marshall County students to take two hours, she said it would be best for the audience to see for themselves. Students from the sponsored philanthropy programs STEP, LUCC and SEAL presented several scholarships to the recipients.
“These children know more about the needs of the community than most adults, and they are more responsive to our needs. They give of their time, their talent and their treasures to make this world a better place,” Hitchins said.
Students in all three groups are involved throughout the grant cycle, from needs assessment to awards ceremony, and Hitchins was grateful for their involvement over the past year.
Finally, Hitchins came to the fourth pillar, grantmaking, outlining some of the programs that facilitate the process.
The Martha-Ellen Tye Foundation provided grants of $5,000 to STEP. In addition, the County Endowment Fund, which receives a small portion of state casino revenue, also provided funds for grants, and donations made to the Rebuild Marshalltown Fund and the County Disaster Recovery Fund. of Marshall have helped with disaster relief and recovery grants.
After providing the update, Hitchins then gave the floor for the grants to be awarded. Representatives from each student philanthropy group took to the podium to present the grants, along with a brief description of the supported program and why it was chosen. The CFMC presented its grants in the same way.
The following organizations received grants, with some receiving multiple grants from all four groups:
• The Fisher Governor Foundation.
• West Marshall Community School District.
• Friends of Conservation of Marshall County.
• Melbourne Public Library.
• Trees forever.
• Emergency food box.
• Friends of Riverside Cemetery.
• UnityPoint Health—Marshalltown Foundation.
• La Raza Boxing Club.
• Marshall County Arts and Culture Alliance.
• YMCA-YWCA of Marshalltown.
• Marshalltown Youth Foundation.
• TO ACCESS.
• The Welcome Bridge.
• Child abuse prevention services.
• Community of Common Obligations — The Tallcorn.
• House of Compassion.
• Salvation Army.
Contact Susanna Meyer at 641-753-6611 or