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BUCHANAN COUNTY – The Buchanan County Community Foundation (BCCF) announces $106,043.37 in grant funding to 15 projects of organizations serving Buchanan County as part of its 2020 grant cycle.

BCCF made the decision to not hold its annual award celebration due to COVID-19. Grant checks will be mailed directly to the nonprofit organizations.

Grant recipient organization, project the grant will fund, and grant amount are listed below by funding areas.

Community Betterment

- Buchanan County, Conservation – People to Water Stairway Connection, $12,000

- Buchanan County Animal Shelter dba Otter Creek Animal Shelter – Pawsitively Managing the Pandemic, $8,814.84

- City of Lamont, Scout Park Committee – Revitalization Project, $15,000

- Independence Public Library Foundation – Online and Off-site Library Access, $4,875

- Wildthunder W.A.R.S. – Dog Kennels and Dog Runs, $7,432.89

Human Service

- City of Hazleton, Fire Department – Mini Fire and Rescue Unit, $1,786

- Families Helping Families of Iowa – Fostering Hope for Iowa’s Children in Foster Care, $7,134.64

- Friends of the Family – Homeless Services, $2,500

- Girl Scouts of Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois – General Operating Support for Girl Scouts, $2,000

- Independence Area Food Pantry – Kids Summer Program, $2,500

- Iowa Legal Aid – Civil Legal Services to Low-Income Residents, $2,500

- Kids Corner Childcare & Learning Center – General Operating Support, $4,500

- Northeast Iowa Food Bank – Mobile Food Pantry Program, $10,000

- Operation Threshold – General Support for COVID-19 Response, $20,000

- Waypoint Services – Domestic Violence Program Support, $5,000

About the Grant Program

Decisions on grant awards are determined by a local committee, which consists of volunteers from Buchanan County. Committee members include: Tricia Beatty, Brad Bleichner, Donna Boos, Heather Federspiel, Pete Gaumer (chair), Dawn Kress, Denise Lehman, Beth Ownby, Donald Shonka, Ben Stanford, Karen Stephenson, Annie Vander Werff, and Kristy Ward.

Grants are awarded through Buchanan County Community Foundation’s competitive grant process to projects in the program areas of: art and culture, community betterment, education, environment, health, historic preservation, and human service. Grant applicants must be a 501©(3) designated organization or government entity serving Buchanan County in order to be considered for funding.

The 2021 grant cycle opens February 1, 2021, with an application deadline of April 8, 2021. The grant guidelines and application will be posted prior to the cycle opening at

COVID-19 Disaster Response Fund

In addition, BCCF has allocated $20,000 of its 2020 discretionary grant funding to the Buchanan County COVID-19 Disaster Response Fund. The fund was established by the foundation in March to respond to the increase in nonprofit need to serve individuals and families due to the COVID-19 pandemic. BCCF has been partnering with the Buchanan County Disaster Relief Coalition to distribute the disaster response funds throughout Buchanan County.

“When the Buchanan County Community Foundation first established the COVID-19 Disaster Response Fund, our local governing committee made a unanimous commitment to financially support the fund as well as prioritize pandemic relief as part of our discretionary grant process,” said Pete Gaumer, chair of the BCCF governing committee.

Of the $106,043.37 in the 2020 grant cycle, roughly $28,000 was allocated specifically for COVID-19 support.

“There’s going to be a long-term impact on our communities due to COVID-19,” said Gaumer. “The need is great and if people have been thinking about giving back, now is a good time.”

The Buchanan County COVID-19 Disaster Response Fund provides an opportunity for the public to give in response to the local aspects of the disaster with the reassurance their donations will be used to quickly move resources to where they are most needed and to adapt to evolving needs. Gifts can be made to the fund by going to and clicking on the “Give Today” button.

Gifts can also be directed to the Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa, 3117 Greenhill Circle, Cedar Falls, IA 50613. Checks should be made out to Buchanan County COVID-19 Disaster Response Fund. Online gifts are strongly encouraged to have funds accessible for quick response to needs.

For more information about the Buchanan County COVID-19 Disaster Response Fund, visit or contact Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa at 319-287-9106.