Oregon Community Foundation support funds language programs, small business revitalization and local artists
Four organizations in Jefferson County received combined funding of $ 60,000 from the Oregon Community Foundation.
The Jefferson County Cultural Coalition, Confederate Warm Springs Tribes, Warm Springs Community Action Team, Tananáwit Warm Springs Artist Community, and the Columbia River Institute for Indigenous Development have all received grants in the part of the OCF Arts and Culture Recovery Fund, designed to support historically under- funded artists and communities in Oregon.
The Oregon Community Foundation funds hundreds of projects statewide each year. As a nonprofit organization, they distribute funds to other nonprofits, community organizations and programs. In 2020, they distributed more than $ 227 million in funds across Oregon.
Warm Springs Community Action Team
The Warm Springs Community Action Team received two grants of $ 25,000 from the OCF. Funds from the October grant will be used to fund their ongoing Youth Mural Project, where youth create, paint and maintain the murals located in Warm Springs.
The Confederate Tribes of Warm Springs received another grant from OCF in early November, which is part of OCF’s Thrive Entrepreneur Grants. These grant funds will be used to support local businesses, help them set up e-commerce and enabled the tribe to hire a small business development specialist. They are responsible for supporting small businesses in Warm Springs through business support, e-commerce assistance and entrepreneurship training.
“We are delighted to be working on the development of our small local businesses. When our businesses thrive, we also thrive as a community. It’s a win-win, ”said Chris Watson, executive director of the Warm Springs Community Action Team.
Tananáwit, another branch of WSCAT, also received funding from OCF, $ 5,000 from its Arts and Culture Recovery Fund, intended to support artists hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. Tananáwit is a Warm Springs-based artist community that supports artists through educational and economic development opportunities and builds knowledge and understanding of traditional and contemporary art on the Columbia River Plateau. The program started in 2013 and has since opened a physical store and e-commerce site to help artists sell their art. These funds are used to increase their e-commerce capabilities and support the store, allowing them to include more artists, thus giving them a path to artistic success. You can find their online store at https://shop.warmspringsartists.org/
“When COVID hit, we couldn’t really keep the store open for security reasons, so we had to switch everything to e-commerce.” Said Leah Guliasi, Craftsman Co-op Program Manager. “These funds really help expand that and ensure that artists can continue to thrive.”
Columbia River Institute for Indigenous Development
Another OCF-funded program is the Columbia River Institute for Indigenous Development. CRIID worked on a program to document, preserve and teach their native language, Ichishkin. Today, only ten Ichishkin speakers remain in Warm Springs. CRIID initially developed the program as an in-person, elder-led teaching class to disseminate the language and culture to young people. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed that plan.
“Our original programming was not meant to be online,” said Misty Grenne, CRIID’s chief financial officer, “but we’ve had to change. Many seniors don’t have the skills or technology for online courses. ”
The funds will be used to support older people working from home and equip them with the technical skills necessary to teach language courses online. Even as restrictions related to the COVID pandemic loosen, seniors often remain cautious, but the program continues to make progress toward language preservation.
“We are really trying to go back to traditional roots and work directly with young people in person, we have met elders who feel safe, and then we can share the knowledge in a number of ways.” Said Jefferson Greene, Executive Director of CRIID.
Jefferson County Cultural Commission
The Jefferson County Cultural Commission also received funding through the OCF, as well as the 36 Oregon County Cultural Coalitions. The Jefferson County Cultural Commission was established by the commissioners in 2013 and has distributed grants to various local organizations to promote cultural activities, learning and understanding. In the past, they have provided grants to local school districts, the Jefferson County Historical Society, the Jefferson County Library District, Madras High School Key Club, and Madras Saturday Market. They are still handing out grants for 2022.
OCF grants have funded hundreds of organizations across the state, ranging this year from the 36 federally recognized county and nine tribal cultural commissions to more than 100 art and nonprofits. of culture.
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