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Impact100 Sonoma announces grant finalists

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012 | Posted by

Last year's Impact Grant winner, Teen Valley Services, got a big check.

Impact 100 Sonoma has just announced the finalists for this year’s $100,000 Impact Grant, to be awarded to a nonprofit organization serving Sonoma Valley. The winner will be announced on June 23. An additional $95,000 will also be awarded (for a grand total of $195,000).

The remaining two finalists for the Impact Grant will each receive $13,375, and a total of $68,250 will be awarded in Community Grants ranging in size from $5,000 to $15,000 and focusing on capital needs, innovation and collaboration.

Impact Grant Finalists

The finalists for the Impact Grant, and a description of the proposal they submitted as part of the grant application process, are:

  • The Sonoma Community Center:  Its proposal, Sonoma Serves Volunteer Center, would bring a local Volunteer Center back to Sonoma, a place where those interested in volunteering could learn about the specific needs of the nonprofit organizations in the community.
  • Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance: Its proposal, Project IMPACT! (Improving Mentoring Partnerships & Applying Counseling Techniques), would address the 15% (70 – 75 matches) of mentor-mentee relationships that haven’t been as successful as they could be.  IMPACT! would provide additional counseling and tools to sustain positive mentor-mentee relationships and ensure that even the most at-risk Sonoma Valley youth have the possibility of a bright future.
  • La Luz: Its proposal, Fortaleciendo las Familias y Nuestra Comunidad–Strengthening Families and our Community, would expand the Family Resource Center to meet the growing demand for programs and services.  Over the past five years, La Luz has experienced a 400% increase in the number of walk-in inquiries each month.

Community Grant Finalists

These nine organizations are finalists for the community grant:

Capital Needs: 

  • Friends in Sonoma Helping (F.I.S.H.) provides emergency services for Sonoma families, including food, clothing, transportation, and rental assistance.  They request $15,000 to enable completion of capital projects begun last year to improve their facility: parking lot repaving, lighting, floor covering, and installation of a security camera.
  • Sonoma Overnight Support (S.O.S.) is the only homeless shelter serving families in Sonoma Valley that allows children to remain in school and families to remain in their own community.  They request $11,000 in funds to improve the shelter by replacing linoleum in the bath and laundry, recarpeting the whole facility, and upgrading storage in the bedrooms.
  • Willmar Family Grief & Healing Center is a grief counseling center providing peer grief support for children traumatized by the loss of a loved one. They request $9,000 in funds to create “on-the-go” kits with supplies for music, art and games utilized in the counseling process.  The kits allow Willmar to provide emergency services at other sites throughout the valley, thereby bringing service to those not able to come to the Center.


  • California Parenting Institute requests $15,000 to provide community-based parent education for high-risk families, including classes and home visits.
  • La Luz Center requests $15,000 to provide citizenship classes designed to promote civic and cultural integration – a service previously discontinued by Sonoma Valley Adult Education.
  • Literary Arts Guild-Bookmobile of Sonoma requests $5,000 for updated book supplies to support the Bookmobile at local organizations throughout the valley, thereby promoting reading by providing easier access to books.
  • Valley of the Moon Natural History Association  requests $5,000 to support educational opportunities that focus on history, literature, and environmental studies for elementary students, including transportation, provided at Jack London State Historic Park. The group is the first non-governmental entity contracted to maintain a California State Park.

Planning for Strategic Partnering/Collaboration: 

  • 10,000 Degrees, in collaboration with the Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance and the Sonoma Valley Education Foundation, requests $15,000 to explore a collaborative partnership that would create a college-going culture from elementary through 12th grade in Sonoma Valley by providing counseling and support, college prep, and access to scholarships.
  • Sonoma Valley Museum of Art, in collaboration with Willmar Center, Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance, and Boys & Girls Clubs of Sonoma Valley, requests $10,000 to establish teen focus groups to identify ways to engage underserved and at-risk teens by implementing a multi-faceted art scholarship program for teens at the museum.


Writer Spotlight

Dianne Reber Hart is our Sonoma correspondent.

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