Nearly 300 local organizations eligible for funding

Published in the Dec. 28, 2016 – Jan. 10, 2017 issue of Gilroy Life

By Staff Report

Donna Pray

Gilroy nonprofit organizations seeking to fund their programs in the areas of health, education, recreation, technology, culture and civic services have until the end of January to apply for grants from the Gilroy Foundation.

“A recent Google search located 290 local nonprofit organizations in Gilroy,” said Donna Pray, executive director of the foundation. “That does not include local elementary, middle, and high schools and Gavilan Community College or the Gilroy city programs. That is a lot of groups serving many deserving causes right here in our own town. As a community, we are invited to many fundraisers to support these causes. But grant funding can satisfy many of these needs, with fewer volunteer hours and at less expense to the organization.”

Founded in 1980, the Gilroy Foundation has assets of more than $11 million and is governed by a board of 11 local community leaders and advised by an emeritus board and the ambassadors of the Gilroy Foundation.

With the year coming to an end, local nonprofits, schools and city programs have the opportunity to apply for a Gilroy Foundation grant, Pray said. Grant amounts range from $500 to $5,000. The Richard Hayes Industrial Arts and Julie Hayes Performing Arts grants also provide funding of $20,000 each to an organization that requires funding that will have a significant impact on our community.

Last year’s recipients included Rebekah Children’s Services Culinary Academy, an organization that purchased a mobile learning center for students and apprentices, and the Gilroy Arts Alliance updated the backstage area and lighting, and a video monitor system for the downtown’s Gilroy Center for the Arts.

Site visits by Gilroy Foundation Ambassadors to several of the agencies that received funding show the significant impact these funds have had. In past grant cycles, grant funding has been used for the purchase of sensory activity panels for special need students at Gateway School, the replacement of lamb and goat stalls at the Gilroy High School FFA facility, the maintenance of vans at Gilroy Compassion Center, and the purchase of a new gas forklift for the food pantry at St. Joseph’s Family Center.

When wireless Internet service was installed in the Resource Specialist Program Room at Glen View Elementary School, Resource Specialist Gondie Chavez’s team was able to individualize and tailor direct instruction. “Students would drop by, bringing friends, to work on a project, partner read, or listen to stories online during their free time,” she said. “This would have not been possible without the generosity of donors who ‘Give Where You Live.’”

To download grant criteria and an application, visit Completed applications must be postmarked no later than Jan. 31. Organizations are notified of their status by the end of March. Grants are awarded at the annual meeting and Charitable Giving Program in April.

For more information, contact [email protected] with any questions about the grant application process.


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Marty Cheek