The Camas-Washougal Community Chest is celebrating its 75th anniversary by announcing the award of 28 grants totaling a record $127,671 to local non-profit organizations delivering services, exclusively, to children and families in Camas and Washougal. CWCC is also excited to announce a partnership with the Camas-Washougal Rotary Foundation to help fund additional grants each year. Says Rotary Foundation President Kathy Bussman: “We are pleased to join forces with the Community Chest. Together we can do more good in Camas and Washougal. The Rotary commitment to Service above Self will also add volunteers to the mix as we work to make a difference for many families.”
The grants will fund such diverse services as emergency food assistance, aid to families in crisis or needing emergency services, safe temporary shelter for at-risk youth, a severe weather shelter program at the Washougal Senior Center, a homeless family day center located at Saint Thomas Aquinas in Camas or enhancing the habitat of Gibbons Creek in the Steigerwald Lake National Wildlife Refuge. New organizations receiving grants for the first time are offering services such as financial support for low-income cancer survivors, helping low-income families pay for their pet’s veterinary bills and scholarships for children in need to use a local indoor skatepark.
Some of the non-profit organizations being funded in 2021 include Inter-Faith Treasure House, Children Home Society’s East County Family Resource Center, Janus Youth Program, Pink Lemonade, Family Promise of Clark County and Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership. For a complete listing of the grant awards see the grant summary below.
Thanks to CWRF and to major donations from the GP Foundation, GP employees, Camas School District employees, City of Camas employees, Port of Camas-Washougal employees, Windermere Foundation, Columbia Technology Manufacturing Center and Watercare Industrial Services. CWCC is well on the way to funding these grants. To reach its 2021 fundraising goal of $127,671, however, the CWCC needs additional donations from individuals and businesses in Camas and Washougal. More information and donation forms can be found on the CWCC’s website at www.CamasWashougalCommunityChest.org. The CWCC and CWRF are registered 501 (c) (3) non-profit organizations for federal charitable tax deduction purposes. Says CWCC Co-President Joelle Scheldorf, “we are excited that our partnership with the Rotary Foundation will help more local charities thrive by supporting much-needed programs and services for residents of Camas and Washougal financially and with volunteers”.
2021 Grant Program Summary
Total number of grants awarded – 28
Total value of grants awarded – $127,671
Estimated number of individual services funded by grants – more than 19,500
Community Programs/Projects Funded in 2021
Inter-Faith Treasure House
Helps pay utilities (electricity, water, sewer, garbage and natural gas) so IFTH can continue to operate the east county food bank.
Children’s Home Society – East County Family Resource Center
Helps fund staff at Resource Center. Helps fund parent education groups, youth support groups, emergency basic assistance, behavioral health services and health care services.
Washougal School District – Principal’s Checkbook
Helps Washougal school principals provide for basic student needs to give low income or homeless students equal opportunities at school. Funds showing Hearts of Glass film and hosting panel discussion on employing persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Janus Youth Programs
Provides funding for outreach efforts and overnight facility stays for Camas and Washougal runaway youth at risk for abuse and neglect. Re-introduces kids to safe housing.
Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership
Provides classroom lessons and outdoor applied learning programs for youth, including habitat enhancement projects adjacent to Gibbons Creek in the Steigerwald Lake National Wildlife Refuge and Campen Creek in Mable Kerr Park.
Meals on Wheels People
Purchases food and food service supplies for Camas and Washougal Meals on Wheels People program.
Friends and Foundation of the Camas Library
Supports the Camas Library’s summer reading program for kids and teens.
Fort Vancouver Regional Library Foundation – Washougal Branch
Supports the Washougal Community Library’s summer reading program for kids and adults.
Friends of the Columbia Gorge
Helps fund the Explore the Gorge classroom lessons and outdoor environmental education program for sixth graders in Jemtegaard and Canyon Creek Middle schools in Washougal School District.
REACH Community Development
Helps buy groceries, baby essentials, cleaning supplies, hygiene products and similar basic household needs. Helps with rent and utility assistance. Buys school supplies and holiday food baskets. Serves Gateway Gardens and Towne Square communities in Washougal.
Camas Farmers Market
Helps implement “Produce Pals”, a weekly activities program to educate children about where and how food is produced. Kids completing weekly program receive a $2 token to spend at Camas Farmers Market – grant will buy supplies for take home activity bags and tokens. Helps buy health and safety supplies for staff, vendors and customers, including rental of portable restroom.
Opera Quest Northwest
Helps pay for creating a series of 5- to 10-minute videos focused on Opera Voices, Where do Opera Stories Come From? and How Opera Reflects Culture. Also pays for producing supporting materials for teachers. Provides videos and supporting materials to local schools at no cost. Aimed at students grades 3 through 5.
Helps buy ultrasound supplies, pregnancy test kits and COVID – 19 PPE and supplies.
Camas-Washougal Historical Society
Helps connect the recently completed The Gathering Place at Washuxwal, an open air pavilion, to the Two Rivers Heritage Museum. Helps with maintenance and repair costs at the museum complex.
General Federation of Women’s Clubs
Helps buy Pre-K books for all children enrolled in both Camas and Washougal School District Pre-K programs. Program aimed at youth from birth through age 5 to grow their school readiness skills and strengthen their social interaction skills.
Journey Theater Arts Group
Helps cover five student scholarships and teacher salaries for 16 hours of performance arts education and training spread over eight weeks.
TreeSong Nature Awareness and Retreat Center
Helps fund a circle garden, including preparing the site, installing the infrastructure and planting native plants. The circle garden, including a peace pole and featuring local art will offer education, knowledge, and respite to children and adults attending the retreat center.
Family Promise of Clark County
Helps cover a portion of the cost of the FP Cares academic support services program. Helps homeless, disadvantaged youth avoid the virtual learning slide and catch-up and/or maintain grade level.
Police Activities League of Vancouver
Buys books and pays for police staff time to present five literacy events for 2nd and 3rd graders in the Camas and Washougal School Districts.
Helps buy a microwave, ice machine and food processor to support its homeless meal programs at Washougal Senior Center. Buys serving supplies and meals-to-go supplies and food for an Emergency Pantry.
Helps pay for free dance lessons for toddlers 0 to 5 and young girls ages 9 to 15. Future plans call for adding free programs for LGBTQ youth.
Kawanis Camp Wa-Ri-Ki
Helps fund outdoor education activities that offer physical challenges, problem-solving abilities and human interactions all in a fun and exciting camp community.
Partners with Camas Parks and Recreation – Skatepark
Pays for a portion of the cost to rehabilitate the existing skatepark.
St. Anne’s Episcopal Church
Helps buy and install a washer and dryer to support the homeless who use St. Anne’s Safe Stay overnight parking lot camping program.
Pink Lemonade Project
Helps fund Pink Practicalities, a financial aid and assistance program. Covers costs that health insurance doesn’t, such as groceries, transportation services, lymphedema sleeves, lost wages, rent/mortgage payments, etc.
Lunchmoney Indoor Skatepark
Helps fund scholarships for foster kids, kids on public assistance and or families that cannot afford skate time to use an indoor skatepark offering supervision and mentoring.
West Columbia Gorge Humane Society
Helps fund programs and services designed to keep pets and people together during times of hardship, crises or emergency; pet food pantry, temporary pet boarding, impound/owner surrender fee relief and emergency veterinary care.
Boy Scouts of America – Camas/Washougal Troops
Helps fund Campership Awards so that families in need can send their scouts to summer camp.