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During a virtual event, nearly $250,000 in Rural Vitality Grants were presented to 13 agencies serving central and southern Missouri.
Photo provided by Community Foundation of the Ozarks Inc.
During a virtual event, nearly $250,000 in Rural Vitality Grants were presented to 13 agencies serving central and southern Missouri.

CFO awards $250K to rural initiatives

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Community Foundation of the Ozarks Inc. yesterday awarded its second group of Rural Vitality Grants for 2020.

The grants totaling nearly $250,000 were awarded to 13 nonprofits serving central and southern Missouri, according to a news release. Presented during a virtual event, the funds go toward projects that support health, education and economic self-sufficiency in rural communities in CFO’s service area.

The $247,272 in grants were awarded to:
• Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks, $20,000 to assist low-income women who are receiving treatment;
• Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri, $15,000 for its low-income home improvement program in Butler, Cape Girardeau, Carter, Dunklin, Howell, Mississippi, New Madrid, Pemiscot, Ripley, Scott and Shannon counties;
• 37th Judicial Court Appointed Special Advocates, $15,882 to provide outreach for children in the CASA program in Carter, Howell, Oregon and Shannon counties;
• Central Missouri Foster Care and Adoption Association, $20,000 to support kids in foster care in Camden, Cole, Laclede, Maries, Miller, Moniteau, Morgan, Osage, Phelps and Pulaski counties;
• Christos House, $20,000 for emergency shelter repairs for the domestic violence center in Howell County;
• Discovery Center of Springfield Inc., $20,000 for a STEM and opioid education program in Seymour and Webster County schools;
• Good Samaritan Boys Ranch, $17,000 for its program to support foster children who have been victims of domestic violence and/or sexual assault;
• Joplin Bright Futures, $20,000 to provide children living in low-income households food for the weekends;
• Ozark Action Inc. Head Start, $19,470 to support preschool children living in low-income households in West Plains;
• Ozarks Teen Transitions Program, $20,000 to support youth living in low-income households in Christian, Stone and Taney counties;
• Planned Parenthood of Southwest Missouri, $19,921 to support education for women about sexually transmitted infections;
• Southeast Missouri Food Bank, $20,000 to support its weekend feeding program for children living in low-income households; and
• Texas County Food Pantry, $20,000 to support immediate housing needs for low-income residents in south-central Missouri.

The Rural Vitality Grants are a companion program to CFO’s Louis L. and Julia Dorothy Coover Regional Grantmaking Program, in partnership with the Commerce Trust Co. They are funded by an anonymous donor whose mission is supporting young people in communities with median incomes of 200% or less of the poverty rate, according to the release.

“Grantmaking for rural communities continues to be a significant challenge and we are so grateful to this foundation for its willingness to let the CFO shepherd its resources,” said CFO President Brian Fogle, in the release.

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