Onward! A Legacy Foundation offers enhancement grants

By Chuck Forth

Special to The PREVIEW

Onward! A Legacy Foundation has reached a major plateau as a community foundation dedicated to the philanthropic health of southwest Colorado. Onward! is now launching its first grant cycle after 12 years of careful work and dedication creating a foundation where investors can easily and safely make philanthropic donations to investment funds which grow and provide income for nonprofit efforts.

Onward! A Legacy Foundation was started in Cortez in 2002 with local seed monies. Its portfolio is now over $2 million and is the result of citizens, businesses, nonprofit organizations and other foundations that share the vision of having funds invested locally that will continue to grow. Since its inception, Onward! has been able to distribute more than $3 million in scholarships and grant funds on behalf of more than 30 different funding sources. Funds will continue to provide higher education and grant opportunities into the future as seed monies continue to grow through wise investment. In addition, eight nonprofits serve Southwest Colorado thanks to the 501(c)3 status and administrative assistance that Onward! provides.

The inaugural grant cycle for Onward! is now open. Grant documents and information will be available online at http://www.onwardfoundation.org. Questions may be directed to grants@onwardfoundation.org.

Approximately 10 short-term (maximum one year) grants ranging from $500 to $2,000 will be disbursed this cycle.

To be eligible to apply for a grant, an organization must meet the following criteria: 1) be a nonprofit project or organization located in and providing services to Montezuma, Dolores, La Plata, Archuleta or San Juan counties; 2) have 501(c)3 status or other nonprofit designation; 3)have an organizational structure that demonstrates professionalism and accountability, i.e. a board of directors or similar structure with some kind of governance; and 4) have well-defined goals and a method for evaluating success for the grant activity proposed.

This is an exciting time for our communities. Onward! hopes you will share in the development of our region. Onward! is always ready to discuss other ways to utilize our unique position in the region to further philanthropic investment and support for our five county region. Contact grants@onwardfoundation.org for more information.