Butte Strong Fund has awarded 11 grants for Camp Fire recovery
Contacts: David Little, director of communications, North Valley Community Foundation. Email: email@example.com, 530-891-1150, ext. 30.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 17, 2019
The Butte Strong Fund has awarded 11 grants totaling more than $850,000 for Camp Fire recovery efforts, including a large grant to Butte College to help start a new program focused on helping rebuild fire-ravaged communities. The grants were approved Friday at a meeting of the Butte Strong Fund grant committee, composed of nine community members. The Butte Strong Fund was established earlier this year as a partnership of three major fundraising efforts by NVCF, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. and the Aaron Rodgers NorCal Fire Recovery Fund. Butte College’s proposal submitted to the committee asked for $268,400 for new construction programs starting in the fall. The grant will include scholarships for 50 students for the fall semester starting Aug. 26. The grant also includes money for equipment and laptops for the program. The Rebuild Scholarship is open to full-time students who may or may not have attended college in the past and register for the Applied Construction, Construction Management or HVACR programs. The scholarship will cover tuition and fees, plus a $1,000 stipend for equipment and supplies. Interested students can apply now at butte.edu/apply and once registered for the classes, students will be contacted about the scholarships and stipend.
“We are grateful to the Butte Strong Fund for partnering with us to offer a unique scholarship opportunity for 50 students,” said Butte College President Samia Yaqub.
“These scholarships will change lives and train students for jobs that help in the rebuild effort.”
Prospective students can learn more Aug. 8 at SummerFest 2019 in downtown Chico. Butte College staff will be on hand to provide prospective students more information about the Rebuild Scholarship, career programs and the expanded Promise Scholarship at the Thursday Night Market from 6-9 p.m. in City Plaza.
The Butte Strong Fund committee also approved a $300,000 grant for economic development agency 3CORE to establish a business assistance loan fund. The grant provides a required local match for 3CORE to pursue $2 million in funding from the Economic Development Administration. If approved this funding would allow 3CORE to establish a revolving loan fund for fire-affected businesses in the ridge and Concow areas. The grant was funded through a $3.25 million donation made by Wells Fargo to the Butte Strong Fund in January.
Other recent capacity-building grants from the Butte Strong Fund include:
Paradise Alliance Church ($30,000): To provide a trailer with eight showers, four washing machines and four dryers for Camp Fire victims. The shower and laundry facilities will be available four hours a day, five days a week.
Butte County Fire Safe Council ($50,000): To fund a coordinator position and grant writing support for a program that hopes to determine how to reutilize trees and biomass burned in the Camp Fire, and identify then work through the barriers to making that happen.
Volunteers in Police Service ($15,000): To replace a radar trailer, uniforms and equipment burned in the Camp Fire.
Oroville Hope Center ($50,000): For staffing, a warehouse lease and other infrastructure support for the organization that supplies food, water and goods to more than 10 sites in Butte County in response to the Camp Fire. The organization supports on average 1,500 families or individuals per month out of the Paradise Hope Center.
First Baptist Church of Paradise ($14,400): To support the continued operations of the food pantry, which serves about 500 people per month. Since January, the food pantry has been open three times a week. The group receives food from the Contra Costa/Solano Food Bank at a discount.
Heartstrings Counseling ($45,000): To cover more than 800 counseling sessions as part of the Camp Fire Survivor Counseling Fund.
Butte-Glenn Medical Society ($25,000): To fund a summit to envision the future of health care infrastructure in Paradise. The summit also hopes to determine how the community can restore 300 skilled nursing facility beds that were lost in the fire, analyze health care workforce needs and much more. The event plans to include all hospitals in the county, the county’s behavioral health and public health departments, the California Medical Association, and several health and wellness coalitions.
Chico Art Center’s Butte County Art on Wheels ($25,000): To fund an art program in schools for students affected by the Camp Fire for the coming school year. The pop-up booths at schools provide an extra layer of emotional and mental support for youths and staff at sites experiencing trauma or behavioral issues during the school day.
To date, the NVCF has awarded more than $16 million in grants related to Camp Fire relief via the Butte Strong Fund, Camp Fire Relief Fund and donor-designated funds.
The Butte Strong Fund provides funding for eligible organizations or local government entities that are directly serving people affected by the Camp Fire. Individual assistance is handled through those organizations.
Organizations interested in applying for Butte Strong Fund grants can visit ButteStrongFund.org to determine if they qualify for funding. Those that do can submit a brief grant inquiry before being invited to submit a full application. Staff at NVCF will facilitate the application process.
The Butte Strong Fund is still receiving donations. Tax-deductible donations can be sent to Butte Strong Fund, 240 Main St., Suite 260, Chico, CA 95928 or by visiting www.buttestrongfund.org.