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Innovia Foundation gifts big bucks to Kootenai County nonprofits

by Press Staff
| March 18, 2021 1:00 AM

The Innovia Foundation announced Wednesday that more than $1.2 million in grants has been awarded to 133 organizations in Eastern Washington and North Idaho through the recent Community Grant Program and Arts and Culture Recovery Grant Program.

Innovia awarded 18 grants to organizations in Kootenai County, many of which serve multiple counties throughout North Idaho.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the region, Innovia made intentional changes to its traditional grant practices that included increasing giving for COVID-19 relief, reducing the reporting requirements and other restrictions on existing grants, awarding operating grants and actively engaging with communities hardest hit by COVID-19.

Priorities were given to organizations impacted by COVID-19 and area wildfires and particularly disproportionately impacted communities along with a separate pool of funding to support arts and culture organizations.

“We know that organizations were hit hard in 2020 by the pandemic and the wildfires in our region," Innovia Foundation CEO Shelly O’Quinn said. "By providing more flexible dollars and a streamlined grant reporting process, we wanted to make sure that funding would go to those organizations supporting our most vulnerable.”

This year, Coeur d'Alene's makerspace Gizmo-CDA will establish a Micro Entrepreneurial Business Program on the campus of North Idaho College, helping to build the skills necessary to create a product, finance it and market it. A $10,000 grant from Innovia Foundation will be used as seed money to start a MicroLoan Fund to support women who are living beneath the ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) numbers in order to successfully bring their artisan products to market.

Another grant recipient is the Idaho Youth Ranch, which received $14,000 to expand the capacity of the ranch to bring accessible, cost-effective mental health services to youth whose mental health has worsened because of COVID-19, and to expand the scope of family support through case management services. The grant from Innovia will be used to support the work of an additional therapist and case manager, enabling the Idaho Youth Ranch to increase the number of youths served from 153 in 2020 to 200 during the grant period.

Many of the organizations serve multiple counties. Grants ranging from $1,500 to $20,000 will support these Kootenai County organizations:

Attorneys Northwest, Inc. | $20,000 — Operating support

Boys & Girls Club of Kootenai County | $10,000 – General operating support, summer session

CDAIDE | $5,073 – Case management system implementation

Children's Village | $15,000 – Operating support

Coeur d'Alene Symphony Orchestra | $5,000 – General operating support

Emerge | $5,000 — General operating support

Family Promise of North Idaho | $5,000 – General operating support

First Judicial District CASA Program | $20,000 – CASA Path to Permanency Project

Gem Community Citizens Project Group DBA Hayden Senior Center | $10,000 – General operating support

Gizmo-CDA, Inc. | $10,000 – Micro Entrepreneurial Project

Human Rights Education Institute | $7,500 – General operating support

Idaho Youth Ranch | $14,000 – Strengthening the safety net for families impacted by COVID-19

Post Falls Food Bank | $8,000 – Grocery Rescue Program

Safe Passage | $15,000 – Children’s Advocacy Center

Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Center | $10,000 – Expanding the arts: Live streaming

Specialized Needs Recreation | $7,500 – Scholarship fund

St. Vincent de Paul North Idaho | $10,000 – Health and wellbeing

Tesh, Inc. | $20,000 – Insulation installation