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Grantmakers Challenge contributes $22M to aid children in five-year span

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Following the release of the 2004 Community Focus Report for Springfield and Greene County, the Grantmakers Challenge for Children was born. The program concluded Dec. 31 and participants were honored Jan. 26 after nearly $22 million was contributed in the five-year process.

The 2004 report found three red flags in the area:
  • Education systems ill-equipped to educate growing numbers of impoverished children;
  • at-risk children lacking access to appropriate health care; and
  • domestic instability and its relationship to poverty.
The Community Foundation of the Ozarks, one of the five organizations that partner to create the biennial Community Focus Reports, held a program yesterday to honor the contributions and spell out the impact they had on the problem issues identified for the Grantmakers Challenge, according to a CFO news release.

The Grantmakers Challenge for Children comprised 35 different organizations, funds and families. The challenge officially ended on Dec. 31, after grants were awarded to hundreds of charities, organizations and nonprofits.

CFO contributed more than $1 million to the Enhancing Children's Healthy Opportunities project during the campaign, the largest single grant ever awarded by CFO, the release said.

"I think what we’re doing in Springfield is groundbreaking and we hope to replicate it here and elsewhere,” Robberson Elementary Principal Kevin Huffman said in the release, concerning the ECHO project, which provides comprehensive counseling and family wellness services for children through a partnership among Springfield Public Schools, Missouri State University, Burrell Mental Health and CFO.

CFO publishes the Community Focus Reports through its partnership with the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, the Springfield-Greene County Library District, United Way of the Ozarks and the Junior League of Springfield.

The Grantmakers Challenge for Children partners were:
  • the Thomas H. and Josephine Baird Memorial Fund;
  • Robert and Margaret Carolla Fund;
  • Care to Learn;
  • Community Foundation of the Ozarks;
  • the CFO/ECHO Project;
  • CoxHealth Foundation;
  • Darr Family Foundation;
  • U.S. Department of Education;
  • Female Leaders in Philanthropy;
  • The Ferguson Family Fund;
  • Gannett Foundation/Springfield News-Leader;
  • Ed and Virginia Heer Family Foundation Fund;
  • Isabel’s House Crisis Nursery;
  • Junior League of Springfield;
  • Mayor’s Commission for Children;
  • Missouri Sports Hall of Fame/Price-Cutter Charity Championship;
  • Musgrave Foundation;
  • Ron and Cathy Neville;
  • O’Reilly Family Foundation Fund;
  • O’Reilly and Wooten families;
  • Ozarks Health Advocacy Foundation;
  • Ronald McDonald House Charities;
  • St. John’s Foundation for Community Health;
  • St. John’s Clinic Force for Good;
  • Foundation for Springfield Public Schools;
  • City of Springfield Community Development Block Grant Program;
  • Central Trust & Investments;
  • Bill and Ann Turner and The Turner Family Foundation;
  • United Way of the Ozarks;
  • The Charles L. and Dorothy Weaver Orthodontic Fund;
  • Tal and Rosalie O’Reilly Wooten Family Foundation Fund;
  • the Youth Empowerment Project; and
  • several anonymous donors and foundations.
For a full list of the contributions, see the downloadable file below.[[In-content Ad]]

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