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Roots & Branches Foundation Awards $79,490 in Grants in Ninth Cycle of Grantmaking

Denver, CO—Roots & Branches Foundation, a grantmaking initiative of Rose Community Foundation, has awarded $79,490 in grants to six nonprofit organizations in its ninth cycle of grantmaking. Three of the grantees work to strengthen families and communities by increasing access to healthy food and nutrition education and the others work to increase access to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) careers for young adults through education and skill development.

This marks the ninth year of Roots & Branches Foundation, which is composed of Jewish individuals in their 20s and 30s from the Greater Denver community. To inform their grantmaking, this year’s 18-member group studied Jewish values and teachings, explored community needs and engaged in strategic philanthropy, grantmaking that supports organizations in creating lasting, positive change. Over the past nine years, Roots & Branches Foundation has granted nearly $700,000 to nonprofits serving the Greater Denver community. There are now 161 alumni who have participated in this collaborative giving program.

The grant priorities Roots & Branches members selected and the grants they made represent a manifestation of their shared Jewish values of giving in pursuit of a more just world, strengthening those who need help to become self-sufficient and not standing idly by in the face of injustice.

“’Being a part of Roots & Branches helped connect me to others in the Denver Jewish community and to organizations doing meaningful work in Denver. I was proud to be able to use my Jewish values to support my community in such an impactful way,” reflects member Dalia Garfinkel.

The following is a list of the grants awarded by Roots & Branches Foundation in 2016. Locations indicate the organization’s headquarters, not necessarily the geographic area served.

Strengthening Families and Communities by Increasing Access to Healthy Food and Nutrition Education

The GrowHaus (Denver) $25,000 to empower families through a promotora model in which community members are hired and trained to provide healthy food access and education for their neighbors in Globeville and Elyria-Swansea.

Metro Caring (Denver) $19,490 to support hunger relief and prevention programs, providing families with access to nutritious foods, education about healthy diets and growing food, and services promoting self-sufficiency and overall health.

Re:Vision (Denver) $5,000 to support families in the Westwood neighborhood through a promotora model in which community members are hired and trained to support their neighbors in creating home gardens to grow their own nutritious foods.

Increasing Access to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Careers for Young Adults through Education and Skill Development

Colorado Association of Black Professional Engineers and Scientists (Denver) $5,000 to encourage and assist traditionally underrepresented youth in the pursuit of STEM careers through hands-on programs led by professionals in the engineering field.

Denver Public Schools Foundation (Denver) $10,000 to support summer internships to help develop a STEM-ready talent pipeline as part of CareerConnect, a four-year STEM education and career exploration program for Denver Public Schools high school students.

Groundwork Denver (Denver) $15,000 for The Blue Team, a job training program in which youth from the Sheridan neighborhood develop STEM skills by working to improve the water quality of Bear Creek.

To learn more about Roots & Branches Foundation, visit rcfdenver.org/rootsandbranches, or contact Sarah Indyk, director of special projects, at 303.398.7416 or sindyk@rcfdenver.org. A list of members follows.

Roots & Branches Foundation 2015-2016 Members:

Ben Aussenberg

Matt Bloom

Aubrey Cornelius

Karen Flaxer

Dalia Garfinkel

Bodie Johnson

Katie Johnstone

Zachary Kiefer

Felix Kishinevsky

Sophie Klein

Sarah Krivel

Doreen Molk

Scott Peikin

Allie Shpall

Hannah Solomon

Alison Sorkin

Katherine Touff

Emily Wasserman

About Rose Community Foundation

Rose Community Foundation uses leadership, grant making and donor engagement to invest in strategic and innovative solutions to enduring problems and emerging issues. The Foundation has granted more than $240 million, since it was founded in 1995. To learn more, please visit rcfdenver.org.

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