Through an odd series of events over the past two years I ended up involved in the crazy, passionate, chaotic world of Phoenix non-profit groups and events. I’ve been constantly impressed by the amazing things going on locally on an independent level, and constantly horrified at how difficult it is to get just the basic funding needed for great ideas to take off. People work their butts off on a shoestring, while big investments often go towards established entities with so much overhead they can’t execute. It’s maddening.
So when I was asked to be part of a board looking towards sharing grant money with locally based non-profits, I was torn. I needed another commitment like I need an extension to the Chunnel plowed through my head, but I liked the idea and figured I could put my network to good use and help get the word out. Specifically, I want to try and reach a lot of the local, community-level groups that are online and actively leveraging all these social tools to try and move forward. They’re groups that this grant process may not normally reach, and I want to get them into the application stack.
The grant program is called Sharing The Prize Seed, and the $25,000 “Sharing the Prize Seed” grant program is sponsored by the law firm of Jaburg & Wilk and the Jaburg & Wilk Foundation. The “Sharing the Prize Seed” grant has at its root the story of a farmer whose crop won top awards every year. Upon receiving his annual honors, the farmer would distribute some of his prize seed with neighboring farmers to plant in their own fields. As the growing season progressed and his neighbors’ fields began to flourish, the wind would blow pollen from field to field, and the cross-pollination assured that all the crops were strong.
Qualified candidates will put forward a proposed community improvement project that requires at least two Valley of the Sun 501(c) 3 non-profit organizations to work together to improve the condition of Valley education, children, at-risk programs and other community-based efforts identified through the Sharing the Prize Seed Giving Areas. Grant applications are being accepted until Monday, April 19, 2010. Grant details and the grant application are available here.
Grant applications are being reviewed by the Sharing the Prize Seed Advisory Board, of which I’m a member. The public will make the final decision through an online voting competition at sharingtheprizeseed.org of the ten finalists selected by the Advisory Board. The winning project proposal will be announced in May.
If you know a qualified Maricopa County 501(c) 3 non-profits organization please send them this info. You do not need to send them to me – just get them the application details and information.
Please help me share, Tweet, Facebook, and (Latest Tool Thingy) this info as much as possible. Click the little tabs at the bottom of this post. I really want to spread this info as far as possible among online groups who may not have heard about this opportunity yet.
There are some amazing things going on in the Valley, and thank you for helping support them!