Timbers award $37,000 in Community Fund Grants

Nine local nonprofit organizations selected to receive summer grants

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Portland Timbers today announced the awarding of $37,000 in grants to nine youth-focused, nonprofit organizations in the greater Portland area through the Portland Timbers Community Fund (PTCF). The nine summer grant recipients were selected by the Portland Timbers Community Fund Advisory Board.

Supported by founding partners JELD-WEN Windows & Doors, Alaska Airlines, adidas, PGE and Burgerville, the PTCF presented grants to The Black Parent Initiative, Children’s Book Bank, I Have A Dream Foundation, My Voice Music, Northwest Family Services, Oregon Youth Soccer Association, Portland Community Reinvestment Initiatives, Inc., Self Enhancement, Inc. and SMART.

All nine summer grant recipients will be recognized during halftime of Tuesday night’s match against the San Jose Earthquakes at JELD-WEN Field.

The PTCF has set an aggressive goal of donating $180,000 in grants to local nonprofits and field projects in 2012. The PTCF offers three rounds of grants over the course of the year. Letters of Interest (LOI) for the PTCF’s fall grant cycle are due Monday, July 23. For grant applications and guidelines, visit www.portlandtimbers.com/community/fund.

The funding that The Black Parent Initiative received will go toward its “Breaking the Cycle, Closing the Gap” symposium, designed to help improve youth education and achievement. The Black Parent Initiative is a community-based, culturally specific, family organization committed to addressing significant educational and life changes facing low to moderate income families in the Portland area. More on the organization can be found at www.thebpi.org.

Children’s Book Bank will use its grant money to purchase books in Spanish in order to serve more Spanish-speaking households in the greater-Portland area. The Children’s Book Bank strives to improve the literacy skills of low-income children by providing books to them before they reach kindergarten. The organization also collects, repairs and packages used books for youth. Learn more about Children’s Book Bank at www.childrensbookbank.org.

I Have A Dream Foundation will apply its grant towards the academic intervention component of its Dreamer School Project. Founded in 1990, I Have A Dream Foundation works to help low income children achieve success in school and prepare for college. The Dreamer School Project provides academic, personal and social support services to both students and families at Portland’s Alder Elementary School. Additional information on the I Have A Dream Foundation is available at www.ihaveadreamoregon.org.

The grant awarded to My Voice Music will help fund three, week-long summer camps for 100 local kids. My Voice Music engages youth in music and performance in order to promote self-esteem, social skills and emotional expression. Learn more about My Voice Music at www.myvoicemusic.org.

Northwest Family Services received funding for the Latino Family Empowerment Project (LFEP), a comprehensive service for youth and families based at seven area middle schools. LFEP includes weekly afterschool and summer programs, field trip opportunities, tutoring and case management for more than 140 students. Additionally, their families gain access to financing, job training, educational and parenting resources. Learn more about LFEP at http://northwestfamilyservices.wordpress.com.  

The grant received by Oregon Youth Soccer Association (OYSA) will go towards The Outreach Program for Soccer (TOPSoccer), which enables disabled children opportunities to learn and play the game of soccer. OYSA currently has 300 youth enrolled in TOPSoccer, which is a nationwide program. More about TOPSoccer and OYSA’s involvement is available at www.oregonyouthsoccer.org/players/topsoccer.aspx.

Portland Community Reinvestment Initiatives, Inc., will apply its grant towards the Healthful Eating and Living (HEAL) Summer Camp. A youth camp, HEAL Summer Camp pairs learning and activity curriculum about food, gardening and fitness with grade-level education in the subjects of math, writing and reading in a fun and empowering environment; learn more at www.pcrihome.org.

The grant awarded to Self Enhancement, Inc., will help up to 20 girls participate in sports by providing uniforms, supplies and equipment as well as transportation and coaches/staff. Self Enhancement, Inc., is a nonprofit organization supporting at-risk urban youth. In 31 years, the organization has grown from a one-week summer basketball camp to a flourishing agency serving thousands of students each year in the greater Portland area. More information about Self Enhancement, Inc. is available at www.selfenhancement.org.

The funding given to SMART – Start Making A Reader Today – will help support the program in the Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington Counties for the 2012-13 school year. SMART annually recruits thousands of volunteers to read one-on-one with pre-kindergarten through third grade students in need of literacy support. More about SMART is available online at www.getsmartoregon.org.

The PTCF, an advised fund of the Oregon Community Foundation, supports charitable, nonprofit organizations that are registered as a 501(c)(3), with tax-exempt status from the IRS and are located within one of the four surrounding counties of the Portland metro area: Multnomah, Washington, Clackamas, and Clark County in Southwest Washington. Grant-seeking organizations must fall under one of the following areas of focus: youth education; youth sports; youth health and fitness; environmental awareness and activism with youth and families.

Through the club’s community outreach platform, Stand Together, the Timbers’ community mission is to harness the power of sport to improve the lives of children and families in the region through targeted programs, deep partnerships and philanthropic giving. For more on the Timbers community outreach programs and partners, visit www.portlandtimbers.com/stand-together.