The 117 nonprofit grantees are reimagining a more equitable region
Denver, CO – Rose Community Foundation awarded $4,055,000 this October in support of 117 organizations working toward an equitable recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The grants aim to not only bolster local nonprofits as they help mitigate the pandemic’s varied impacts, but empower them to begin creating a more equitable, just, inclusive and engaged Greater Denver.
“Our region is developing rapidly, and the needs of residents and the organizations that support them are great and growing,” said Rose Community Foundation President and CEO Lindy Eichenbaum Lent. “Many local nonprofits are not only navigating the ongoing crisis of COVID-19 and the disparities that have been exacerbated by it, but are actively building toward a new, better ‘normal‘ that dismantles barriers to opportunities for all members of our community and works for everyone in our region.”
The organizations receiving funding comprise a varied slate; their approaches, budgets and populations served vary considerably. They work across different issue areas – such as economic opportunity, education, health and housing – with many implementing an integrated, cross-cutting approach. Grantees focus their support on a variety of diverse communities – from Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) individuals to people living on low incomes to immigrants and refugees – with the goal of improving outcomes and reducing barriers to opportunity. And though the grantees range from small, grassroots organizations with budgets under $10,000 to larger organizations exceeding $10 million, each remains proximate to and informed by the populations they serve.
The Foundation prioritized investments to nonprofits operating in Adams, Arapahoe and Denver counties – areas with higher proportions of BIPOC and economically insecure individuals than other Greater Denver counties, and communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic’s impacts – along with specific areas in Boulder, Broomfield, Douglas and Jefferson counties that demonstrated need.
In an effort to be inclusive of a wide range of organizations and ideas that advance a more equitable region, the Foundation sought to broaden its grantee pool; over one-third of nonprofits funded are new grantees to Rose Community Foundation, and over half are led by people of color.
Details about the grant recipients and their work are outlined below:
Organizations contributing to an equitable recovery of our community.
The already existing housing crisis was dramatically exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Organizations in this category are working to humanize the issue, tap into the strengths of residents with lived experiences, and stabilize those most at risk of homelessness by providing critical services to individuals experiencing housing insecurity and helping them regain access to affordable housing.
Almost Home – To support Almost Home’s Housing Navigation Center, a community resource that provides low-barrier access to on-site case management and services for individuals and families who are at risk of or experiencing homelessness.
Archway Housing & Services, Inc. – To help Archway reimagine its essential family and supportive services as it works to provide service-enriched affordable housing for very-low-to-moderate-income families.
Broomfield FISH – To help stabilize FISH’s low-income residents, prevent evictions and homelessness, and invite systems change through advocacy from those directly impacted by the housing crisis, with the goal of creating more just and equitable housing policies in Broomfield.
Brothers Redevelopment, Inc. – To support BRI’s Colorado Housing Connects Helpline, which helps those experiencing housing insecurity apply for state and local funding programs, seek affordable housing options, resolve issues with tenants/landlords, and overcome transportation, connectivity and other issues as they emerge.
Colorado Poverty Law Project – To increase CPLP’s outreach to members of the undocumented community to promote and facilitate access to legal services that protect their housing rights and prevent homelessness.
Colorado Safe Parking Initiative via Barton Institute for Community Action – To provide “safe parking” spaces – safe, legal places to sleep in a vehicle – and support pathways to permanent housing for individuals experiencing homelessness.
Colorado Village Collaborative – To help expand the Safe Outdoor Spaces program, which provides outdoor, individualized sheltering options, as well as services and resources, for people experiencing homelessness.
The Community Firm – To support increased capacity for the COVID-19 Eviction Defense Project to help tenants access rental assistance funds and other critical housing stability services.
Community Investment Alliance via Impact Development Fund – To increase affordable housing in Greater Denver by assisting in community-led strategic planning work in the areas of homelessness and affordable housing development.
The Delores Project – To expand inclusive housing programs aimed at creating lasting housing stability for unaccompanied women and transgender individuals experiencing homelessness.
Energy Resource Center – To support ERC’s Home Repairs Fund, which provides free weatherization services (improvements to save energy) in the homes of low-income individuals.
Maiker Housing Partners – To continue supporting residents across Maiker’s affordable housing communities by growing the capacity of their Family and Community Vitality Program team and its community organizing continuum.
The Reciprocity Collective – To support Reciprocal Community Resource Connections, a program that provides dynamic outreach to individuals experiencing homelessness and chronic poverty in Denver and Arapahoe counties.
SafeHouse Denver – To support services and housing for survivors of domestic violence, who have experienced increased isolation, limited access to resources and intensified physical violence during the pandemic.
Mental health challenges are varied for both adults and youth coming out of the pandemic. Organizations in this category utilize a diverse set of approaches to address these challenges, meeting community members where they are and providing multiple points of entry for those seeking support.
La Clinica Tepeyac, Inc. – To support culturally responsive health care, including behavioral health care, for low-income Latinos, disproportionately impacted by the pandemic’s health and economic effects.
Colorado Circles for Change – To support youth-led community change that will help build an inclusive welcoming community led by those most impacted by inequities and racial disparities.
Colorado Community College System Foundation – To pilot a telecounseling program that will provide convenient, culturally competent access to mental health counselors for students attending Greater Denver community colleges.
Denver Children’s Advocacy Center – To continue responding to COVID-19-related mental health needs, focusing specifically on supporting low-income immigrant communities.
Fortaleza Familiar via Cultivando – To address compounded inequities Latinx LGBTQ young people face, inclusive of mental health and wellness, through an intergenerational approach with educational and cultural organizing that increases economic opportunities for youth and their families.
Khesed Wellness – To expand free and affordable mental health therapy services for underinsured communities.
Maria Droste Counseling Center – To lead a collaborative project to build a more diverse pipeline of clinical providers in Greater Denver.
Out Boulder County – To support, enrich and amplify the voices of LGBTQ+ BIPOC individuals by increasing accessibility to OBC’s services.
Project PAVE – To support trauma-informed, culturally responsive therapy and advocacy services to youth survivors of violence and their families.
The Storytellers Project via The HadaNõu Collective – To support Breaking Chains Building Bonds, a program that teaches formerly justice-system involved parents a variety of healthy coping techniques to help them parent effectively and create bonds with their children and families post-incarceration
Student and Family Supports
The COVID-19 pandemic has created a particularly challenging landscape for children and families, in which students and teachers are constantly navigating in-person and virtual learning environments, making it difficult to provide students with the individualized attention they need and creating additional burdens, particularly for low-income families. Organizations in this category are providing comprehensive family supports that address learning loss and seek to reengage families in their children’s education, including after-school and summer enrichment activities, family engagement programs, mental health supports, parenting education, health services, and college- and career-readiness support.
Colorado “I Have a Dream” Foundation – To support the expansion of Colorado “I Have A Dream” Foundation programming, including academic enrichment opportunities, emotional wellness support, and college and career development for youth, as well as mental health support, social service support and systems advocacy for adults in Westwood and Green Valley Ranch.
Denver Kids, Inc. – To support Denver Kids’ educational counseling program, with the goal of ensuring each student has the academic, social and emotional support and resources they need to thrive, graduate high school, and pursue post-secondary options.
Denver Urban Debate League – To enhance equitable access to debate education programs by supporting its public debate program to amplify diverse student voices and bring informed civil discourse into the community.
Florence Crittenton Services – To support the Student and Family Support Program’s family advocates who provide case management to teen moms, and the Early Childhood Education Center, a learning laboratory that provides high-quality childcare.
Heart & Hand Center – To support the Career & College Readiness Program, which strengthens academic, social-emotional and future-planning capacities of participants, empowering them to achieve post-secondary success and beyond.
Kids Above Everything – To support Big Homies, a mentorship program that helps Northeast Denver’s BIPOC youth develop social-emotional learning and decision-making competencies and build relationships with trusted adults.
Mile High Early Learning – To support early care and education for children ages 0-5, focusing on trauma-informed practices and social-emotional support for those furthest from resources, while developing and training the essential workforce of early childhood caregivers.
School District 12 Education Foundation – To support Resource Closets across 55 schools in the Adams 12 school district. Closets provide food, clothing, hygiene products, school supplies and basic household items for students and their families, ensuring every student is equitably prepared to engage in learning.
Sims-Fayola Foundation – To support SFF’s Male Educators of Color Fellowship, a year-long program that seeks to diversify the P-12 teaching force by recruiting, retaining and supporting male educators of color.
Sun Valley Kitchen and Community Center – To expand SVKCC’s No-Cost Grocery program by enhancing food storage capabilities, the number of individuals served and the long-term sustainability of the organization.
ViVe – To support youth-led community and civic engagement projects responding to needs emerging from the pandemic, including youth mental health and basic-needs provisions.
Workforce and Economic Recovery
An essential component of building a new, better “normal” is a thriving workforce and economic system that works for everyone. Organizations in this category are working to establish more equitable systems and connect individuals to resources that enable economic mobility, and ultimately, sustainable long-term employment.
Access Gallery – To support Access Gallery’s innovative co-op model, which will provide resident artists – all of whom have disabilities – with stipends that guarantee their income.
Activate Work Inc. – To support growth of Activate’s health care workforce program, which will connect low-income individuals with career pathway jobs that lead to economic mobility, and to support the creation of an employer-led Colorado coalition to improve job pathways in health care.
African Chamber of Commerce Colorado – To support the Timberline Network, a program that will provide technical, back-office and marketing support for 100 immigrant businesses and entrepreneurs adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Black Business Initiative via AYA Foundation – To build and launch a community hub focused on creating economic equity and providing Black business leaders and entrepreneurs with the tools and resources needed to close the wealth gap.
Center for Community Wealth Building – To build on CCWB’s efforts to transform the current economic system to a more inclusive and equitable model that prioritizes democratically owned businesses, emphasizes local procurement, and ensures sustainability while closing the racial wealth gap.
Center for Work Education and Employment – To support the Career Readiness program, which provides comprehensive job-skills training, coaching and case management for underserved populations in Greater Denver.
Collaborative Healing Initiative Within Communities, Inc. – To support programming to empower Black, Latina and Multiracial women, girls and families to create generational legacies of health and wealth.
Colorado Gerontological Society – To help older adults in Denver, Adams and Arapahoe counties adapt to continued shifts to online service provision.
Denver Asset Building Coalition – To support the delivery of free tax preparation services to low-income residents in Greater Denver.
Denver Indian Center – To support a workforce program that will prepare Native American adults with lower reading abilities with the training and support needed to succeed in a homebuilding boot camp, a first step toward a better-paying job and long-term career success.
Denver Metro Chamber Leadership Foundation – To support Prosper Colorado, a collaborative initiative that works with the business community to move more women and people of color into better paying jobs, start and grow more women- and BIPOC-led small businesses, and address attainable housing.
Denver Urban Gardens – To support food access programming and its Baseline Infrastructure Initiative, which together ensure that people in under-resourced neighborhoods can grow their own food, access the benefits of community gardens, and provide equitable workforce opportunities.
Focus Points Family Resource Center – To support digital literacy programming to be included in all English Language Acquisition classes and as a stand-alone program for learners of all levels to address educational and economic barriers for immigrant participants.
The Kaleidoscope Project – To support Denver-based, Black-owned businesses in their efforts to create a complete, community-sustaining ecosystem with additional access to resources and a network of support.
Montbello Organizing Committee – To support the Building Wealth From Within project, which works with residents to develop an economic system in Montbello that provides employment and ownership opportunities for residents, protects against displacement and gentrification, and helps residents begin building generational wealth.
PCs for People – To increase technological access and digital literacy for low-income individuals, while using electronic re-use to increase sustainability.
Public Education & Business Coalition – To establish an early childhood education (ECE) workforce stakeholder group to produce recommendations for recruiting, retaining and supporting the growth of a diverse, representative ECE workforce for the state, in support of universal preschool implementation.
Teach By Tech, Inc. – To support TBT’s mobile computer lab and digital skills training programs, which help Coloradans gain access to laptops, hotspots and a wide range of hands-on workshops and courses.
VUELA for Health – To support increased workforce development opportunities for Latinas around community health work.
Work Options – To support WO’s job skills training and support program, which improves economic opportunities and the mental health of hard-to-employ individuals by recruiting and training individuals working toward sustainable employment in the food service industry.
You Be You Early Learning via Colorado League of Charter Schools – To support an innovative, equitable and culturally responsive mobile ECE program.
Organizations working to create a more equitable, just, inclusive and engaged Greater Denver.
Cultivating belonging is key to building strong and engaged communities. Organizations in this category are growing community capacity to ensure all members of underserved populations are valued, safe and focused on co-creating a society that inspires individuals to invest in their neighborhoods, participate in civic life and take part in a thriving community.
Asian Girls Ignite via The HadaNõu Collective – To support The Power of Storytelling, a program that connects and empowers Asian American and Pacific Islander girls, grades 6-12, through stories about growth, development and resilience.
Casa de Paz – To support programming that enables immigrants and refugees to return to their families following release from detention centers.
The Center for Trauma & Resilience – To support wraparound services that secure economic freedom and reduce symptoms of trauma through legal avenues for BIPOC and immigrant victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking.
Convivir Colorado via Moonshot edVentures – To support programming that offers immigrant, refugee and first-generation students with safe spaces to find pride in their identity, opportunities to apply their leadership, and a community that supports them along the way.
Immigrant Legal Center of Boulder County – To support the organization’s capacity and ability to continue providing trusted professional representation for the immigrant Spanish-speaking community in Boulder County.
International Rescue Committee – To support services and programming for refugees, asylees, victims of human trafficking, survivors of torture, and other immigrants in the Greater Denver region.
Justice & Mercy Legal Aid Center – To support inclusive, culturally sensitive, free legal services that assist immigrants without documentation obtain legal status.
Latino Community Foundation of Colorado – To support the planning and publication of a comprehensive report that will provide access to high-quality data and information on the Latinx population in Colorado.
Motus Theater – To support JustUs & Boundless Truth, autobiographical performances featuring monologues about racism, classism and violence in the criminal legal system.
PlatteForum – To support ArtLab, an innovative, paid arts education internship program for low-income, BIPOC and/or LGBTQIA+ high schoolers in Greater Denver.
Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center – To empower transition-age foster youth by both providing direct legal representation to address the barriers they face as they enter adulthood and pushing for large-scale reform through youth-led organizing and advocacy.
Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network – To support RMIAN’s capacity to grow its infrastructure and continue providing free immigration legal representation for children and families, as well as individuals in civil immigration detention.
Soccer Without Borders – To support programming that mitigates social isolation among newcomer immigrant and refugee youth by creating a sense of belonging, maintaining connection, and ensuring newcomer youth have equitable access to supports that promote their physical, mental and social-emotional health.
Think 360 Arts for Learning – To integrate racial justice teaching practices with sensory rich arts engagement.
UndocuHub via Metropolitan State University of Denver Foundation – To support the UndocuHub Community Services Program, which links undocumented and DACA-status families with existing community resources and builds effective connections between service providers and clients.
Community Activation Hubs
Underserved individuals are best supported when needed resources are accessible close to their homes and they have ownership over what and how services are provided. Organizations in this category are establishing themselves as important anchors and community hubs in and for their neighborhoods.
Early Childhood Partnership of Adams County – To support co-located and place-based comprehensive services rooted in the social determinants of health to Adams County families with young children.
Kids First Health Care – To support expansion and relocation of the main pediatric clinic to the newly created Commerce City Community Campus, a co-located network of supportive service agencies.
Lyons Emergency & Assistance Fund – To support LEAF’s core health, housing, transportation and economic-opportunity efforts in the Greater Lyons area and surrounding mountain communities in Boulder County.
POWER Community Center via Colorado Nonprofit Development Center – To support delivery of comprehensive, demand-driven services around health, economic opportunity, crime and safety, and civic engagement to residents of Denver’s Globeville neighborhood.
Rocky Mountain Partnership – To support a coalition of cross-sector stakeholders who are working together to collectively improve economic and social mobility across Adams County.
Urban Land Conservancy – To support ULC’s capacity as it transforms its newly acquired Park Hill Campus, which will almost double the number of affordable housing units where the campus is located and provide quality education, culinary arts and workforce development supports to residents.
Efforts that center historically marginalized voices and create pathways to deeper engagement with communities and systems are critical to reimagining a more just, equitable and engaged future. Organizations in this category seek not just a seat at the table, but a say in how the table is made – demanding not just representation, but transformation.
Asian Chamber Foundation of Colorado – To support educational and career-path growth for AAPI community members.
Asian Pacific Development Center of Colorado – To support a partnership between several Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI)-serving organizations that works to confront hate crimes and economic discrimination against AANHPI communities.
Bluff Lake Nature Center – To support a holistic approach to conservation and education through programming that combines academic and family engagement with a focus on making nature experiences accessible and welcoming to communities that are met with barriers to the outdoors.
Brother Jeff’s Cultural Center – To support equitable access to information, resources and services for the Black/African/African American communities as they begin to recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Centro Humanitario Para Los Trabajadores To support increased participation in El Centro’s Economic Opportunity and Justice Program through both digital organizing and in-person connection.
Co-Lead International – To support Co-Lead’s Climate Strong Initiative, an emerging platform that provides business development support to BIPOC-led climate adaptation/resilience businesses who then, in turn, send a portion of their profits back to the community to support BIPOC-focused environmental justice projects.
Colorado Civic Engagement Roundtable – To empower CCER’s nonprofit network to work more efficiently on civic engagement issues, helping build power and increase equity in underserved communities.
Denver Metro Community Impact – To facilitate community-led and -owned collaborative processes around affordable housing and retail development focused on alleviating gentrification and providing economic opportunity in the Northeast Park Hill Community.
The Drop via Rocky Mountain PBS – To support programming at a Black-led, community-driven public radio station committed to amplifying the voices and talents of Colorado artists and activists of color, including high school students.
Groundwork Denver – To support GWD’s Greener Jobs for a Brighter Future program, which combines neighborhood environmental improvements and youth/young adult training and employment into one program.
The HadaNõu Collective – To support the HNC Boot Camp, a reimagined fellowship approach designed by leaders of color and aimed at supporting leaders of color in growing their organizations.
Hart Center for Public Service – To support the Center’s 2021-22 internship program, ensuring that low-income students and students of color have opportunities to experience “on-the-ground” employment and pathways to careers in public service.
Hunger Free Colorado – To support work with promotoras (community health workers) to engage Latinx immigrant families to enroll in and shape child nutrition programs.
Mile High Connects via Colorado Center on Law and Policy – To address systemic inequities that impact BIPOC and low-income individuals by advocating for and driving equitable investment in community-led solutions, authentic community engagement and community land ownership.
New Era Colorado Foundation – To empower youth to reimagine a just and fair society through issue organizing and civic engagement, by building a policy platform that centers the priorities of young people, specifically young people of color.
Project VOYCE – To help Project VOYCE co-design an innovative organizational model with youth leaders as part of Project VOYCE’s evolution from being youth-serving to being truly co-led by underserved youth.
RedLine – To support RedLine’s EPIC Arts Program, an arts education program designed to engage children in grades K-12 living in low-income communities who would otherwise have limited or no access to quality arts education.
Righteous Rage Institute for Healing and Social Justice – To support Seven Generations Black Legacy, a program that focuses on access to holistic health and wellness programs and services that support the mental and physical health of Black/African American community members.
Sistahbiz via Foundation for Black Entrepreneurship – To provide 100 Black women entrepreneurs with business support, in the form of access to physical space, facilitated training, back-office services and a nine-month cohort program.
Soul 2 Soul Sisters – To support Black Women-led, spiritual programming that focuses on anti-Black racism, reproductive justice and voter engagement.
Urban Leadership Foundation of Colorado – To support programming and services that address social, educational and mental health inequities for BIPOC communities in Greater Denver.
The organizations in this category exemplify holistic, cross-cutting approaches inclusive of several issue area pathways toward recovery – weaving threads like mental health and housing supports or food justice and community organizing together seamlessly – and demonstrate that breadth of focus does not necessarily sacrifice depth of impact.
Aurora Economic Opportunity Coalition – To support response and recovery programs directed at immigrant and refugee communities of North Aurora.
The Conflict Center – To support Restorative Denver, a partnership with the Denver District Attorney’s Office, offering a community-based, restorative justice alternative for adults referred through the program.
ECDC African Community Center of Denver – To support We Made This, an employment-skills program that offers activities that encourage and empower refugee women to integrate more fully in their community.
The Empowerment Program, Inc. – To enhance housing navigation and employment services to participants, helping them obtain and maintain stable housing and economic mobility.
Family Tree – To support GOALS, a two-generation temporary residential program for families experiencing homelessness, to advance practices addressing racial disparities in housing, health and economic opportunity.
The GrowHaus – To support community outreach and leadership training programs so those most impacted by food insecurity have the tools, resources and positional power to be active participants in their community and local food system.
Growing Home – To support an innovative approach of connecting direct services, community-led projects and advocacy to maximize impact in the areas of food, housing, parenting education and lifelong stability.
Homies Unidos Denver – To integrate financial empowerment training, individualized coaching, financial navigation and tax preparation services into the overall package of Homies Unidos’ violence prevention services.
The Initiative – To support The Initiative’s Direct Service Program by expanding safety planning, criminal-justice-system support, self-sufficiency education, healing and recovery support, and emergency financial assistance for clients.
Metro Caring – To help deepen the current program offerings that focus on food entrepreneurship, the solidarity economy, and other cooperative strategies.
Re:Vision – To build community wealth and create economic resilience with the Hecho en Westwood Collective, a Latino cultural hub focused on developing food-based businesses with local entrepreneurs.
Second Chance Center – To assist formerly criminal justice-involved individuals with access to housing, careers and health care, and to dismantle barriers to opportunity.
Servicios de la Raza – To provide wraparound service provision to Latinos in Greater Denver.
Side By Side – To support an innovative model of jail-to-community transitional care that addresses mental and behavioral health, housing, and economic opportunity through professional coaching and peer community support.
Struggle of Love Foundation – To support the Showing Our Love To Save Our Lives Program, a violence-prevention program in which participants are provided with skills to increase their wellness and resilience through emotional, psychological and social wellbeing and access to resources for basic needs.