The Community Foundation of the Ozarks has selected the latest recipients of the Inclusion & Belonging Grants, supported by its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Fund. The program supports small grant requests to ensure equitable participation and engagement in local communities.
The 10 recipients, receiving a total of $20,924, are:
- Drury University: $3,000 to support the Black History Summer Academy, a weeklong summer program for Black youth and adults in Springfield.
- Freedom Encounter Inc.: $3,000 to support the inaugural Holocaust Education and Awareness Week in Branson, scheduled for April 16–22.
- Missouri State University: $3,000 to support “Generations: African American Experiences in Springfield and the Ozarks,” a partnership with Ozarks Public Television to film a documentary about the experience of African Americans in the region before the Civil War.
- Nixa High School: $1,000 to support “Cultural Kaleidoscope,” an educational program that exposes students to Ukrainian culture and encourages understanding and acceptance of people with various backgrounds.
- OTC Foundation: $1,424 to support travel costs for Ozarks Technical Community College students to attend the regional SAAB Conference in St. Louis.
- Ozark Trails Council: $1,000 to support the ScoutReach program, which works with schools and organizations in low-income demographics to provide scouting at little to no cost in the Springfield area.
- PFLAG of Poplar Bluff: $1,500 to support programming at local schools, creating and distributing resources to youth, handing out safe space stickers, and providing fun activities for students.
- Queen City Rock Camp: $2,500 to support volunteer recruitment for its week-long summer camp that helps girls, transgender and binary youth build self confidence through music.
- Springfield Public Schools: $3,000 to support “Opportunity of Music,” a music therapy program that provides access to music, instruments and dance instruction for neurodivergent students.
- United Way of Pettis County: $1,500 to support the Autism Awareness Walk, a 1K and 5K walk/run in the Sedalia community.
About $18,000 remain available for the 2022–23 grant cycle. Agencies may apply for up to $3,000 to support expenses related to: ensuring diverse representation in leadership roles and the community; providing students with equitable opportunity for community engagement and leadership; and hosting events that ensure visible representations of belonging in the Ozarks. Applications are reviewed throughout the year and will be accepted until June 1.
To learn more and begin the application process, visit cfozarks.org/applyforgrants.