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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Innovia awards $1.2 million to community groups

By Nina Culver For The Spokesman-Review

The Innovia Foundation recently awarded $1.2 million in grants in amounts ranging from $1,500 to $20,000 to 133 community organizations in Eastern Washington and North Idaho.

The foundation typically awards community grants each June, but the process was streamlined this year so the awards could go out in March to better help organizations struggling to get through the pandemic, CEO Shelly O’Quinn said.

The foundation also prioritized giving to organizations dealing with the pandemic or the wildfires that swept through some parts of the state last year. Funding is usually restricted to specific projects or capital needs, but this year funding can be used to support the operating budgets of the recipients, O’Quinn said.

The grants went to organizations that serve at least one of five impact areas: health and well-being; education and youth development; economic opportunity; quality of life; and arts and culture. Innovia serves an area from Grangeville, Idaho, to Republic, Washington, and tried to award grants to organizations in 20 counties, O’Quinn said.

“We want to ensure every county is represented,” she said.

Organizations receiving funding are locations in Ferry, Stevens, Pend Oreille, Lincoln, Adams, Spokane, Whitman, Asotin, Lewis, Columbia and Garfield counties in Washington and Boundary, Bonner, Kootenai, Benewah, Clearwater, Latah, Idaho, Nez Perce and Shoshone counties in Idaho.

Though Innovia was able to make a significant difference for quite a few organizations, O’Quinn said there’s still more to do.

The foundation received 297 applications requesting a total of $5.5 million in funding, which means there’s still a significant gap between available funding and need in the community, she said.

More than two dozen volunteers helped review the applications and select which organizations received funding, but it just wasn’t possible to fund them all, O’Quinn said.

“It doesn’t mean they weren’t great applications,” she said of those that weren’t funded. “We just didn’t have enough money.”

Organizations receiving money include food banks, senior centers, fire departments, theaters, community centers, after-school programs, animal care organizations and historical societies.

Among the organizations helped in Spokane County is Feast Collective, which runs feast World Kitchen, a restaurant and catering company that works with 32 refugee and immigrant chefs. The Carl Maxey Center received $10,000 for general support, Greater Spokane County Meals on Wheels was granted $7,500, the Mobius Children’s Museum and Science Center received $7,500 and the town of Fairfield received $10,000 to help fund a commercial kitchen that can be used by community groups and entrepreneurs.

Innovia also gave $20,000 to the GroundTruth Project, which in turn gave the funding to The Spokesman-Review to help pay for a reporter in Washington, D.C., who is partially funded by a Report for America grant.

The full list of grant recipients in Spokane, Stevens, Pend Oreille, Kootenai, Bonner and Boundary counties follows.

Stevens County grant recipients

Chewelah Chamber of Commerce, kiosk at the park support, $5,500

Chewelah Faith Resources Group, TASTY Program: general operating support, $5,000

Colville Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Information Center, $9,500

Colville Community Senior Center, $10,000

Colville Valley Animal Sanctuary, $10,520

Northeast Washington Community Radio Guild, $4,500

Northport Community Preservation and Restoration, senior meals program’s kitchen equipment, $3,800

Town of Northport, fire department, training program for emergency medical responders, $18,000

Pend Oreille County

The Cutter Theatre, enhanced digital production capabilities $9,175

Hospitality House, capital project, $15,000

Newport Parent Co-op Preschool, $10,000

Pawsitive Outreach Spay/Neuter Advocates, $10,520

Pend Oreille County Fair and Rodeo Association, $4,500

Pend Oreille County Historical Society, $3,500

Pend Oreille Players Association, technology upgrade, $6,125

Tiger Historical Center, $3,000

Tri County Community Health Fund, Hope Street Project: Capacity Building, $18,000

Valley Historical Society, innovative solutions in response to COVID-19, $4,800

Spokane County

Caritas Outreach Ministries, $5,000

Carl Maxey Center, $10,000

Catholic Charities Eastern Washington, At-home Education Support: Helping families navigate pandemic learning, $10,000

The City Gate, $5,000

College Success Foundation, $10,000

Communities in Schools of Spokane County, $10,000

Community Minded Enterprises, Strengthening Child Care in The Zone, $20,000

Deer Park Volunteer Ambulance, general capacity building and operations, $8,000

Family Promise of Spokane, $15,000

Feast Collective chef program director investment, $10,000

Global Neighborhood, $5,000

Greater Spokane County Meals on Wheels, creating capacity in a time of need, $7,500

GroundTruth Project, Report for America/The Spokesman-Review: Washington, D.C. reporter, $20,000

Lumen Early Learning, $10,000

Mobius Children’s Museum and Science Center, $7,500

NAOMI, COVID-19 Quarantine Shelter Collaboration, $2,500

New Hope Resource Center, preventing homelessness through rent assistance, $15,000

Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture, $7,500

Odyssey Youth Center, $5,000

Project Beauty Share, Resiliency Project, $10,000

Refugee Connections Spokane, $10,000

A Refuge Trauma Informed Therapies, $10,000

Sinto Senior Activity Center, Ballroom Floor Repair Capital Project, $7,500

SNAP Financial Access, Women’s Business Center, $10,000

Spokane Area Jewish Family Services, Spokane Jewish Cultural Film Festival 2022, $2,500

Spokane Area Youth Choirs, $5,000

Spokane Arts, $5,600

Spokane Civic Theatre Inc., $7,500

Spokane Eastside Reunion Association, $15,000

Spokane Fall Folk Festival, Virtual Fall Folk Festival, $2,400

Spokane Humane Society, STAR, $10,520

Spokane Interactive Arts, Projection Mapping Showcase, $4,000

Spokane Valley Summer Theatre, $5,000

Spokane Youth Symphony, $5,000

Terrain Programs, $10,000

Town of Fairfield, kitchen equipment purchase, $10,000

Transitions’ New Leaf Kitchen and Cafe, $10,000

Volunteers of America, Hope House housing resource specialist role, $20,000

Women’s Healing and Empowerment Network, $7,000

World Relief, community ambassadors outreach, $10,000

YWCA Spokane, Employment aid for women impacted by the coronavirus, $10,000

Bonner County

Angels Over Sandpoint, back-to-school program, $5,000

Better Together Animal Alliance, PAS Helpline, $10,520

Blanchard Area Seniors Incorporated, arts and culture for both youths and adults, $3,000

Bonner Community Food Center Inc., $10,000

Food for Our Children, Weekend Food Program Support, $8,000

Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness, Scotchman Peak Mountain Goat Trail Ambassador Program, $5,000

Kaniksu Land Trust, Connecting Classrooms and Children with Nature, $20,000

Panhandle Alliance for Education, READY! for Kindergarten, $8,000

Panida Theater, $4,950

Pend Oreille Arts Council, $5,000

Priest River Ministries, $15,000

Sandpoint Area Seniors Inc., $5,000

Sandpoint Community Resource Center, program support, $20,000

Selkirk Outdoor Leadership and Education Inc., $10,000

Kootenai County

Attorneys Northwest Inc., $20,000

Boys & Girls Club of Kootenai County, $10,000

CDAIDE, case management system implementation, $5,073

Children’s Village, $15,000

Coeur d’Alene Symphony Orchestra, $5,000

Emerge, $5,000

Family Promise of North Idaho, $5,000

First Judicial District CASA Program, CASA Path to Permanency Project, $20,000

Gem Community Citizens Project Group DBA Hayden Senior Center, $10,000

Gizmo-CDA Inc., Micro Enrepreneurial Project, $10,000

Human Rights Education Institute, $7,500

Idaho Youth Ranch, Strengthening the Safety Net for Families Impacted by COVID-19, $14,000

Post Falls Food Bank, Grocery Rescue Program, $8,000

Safe Passage, Children’s Advocacy Center, $15,000

Salvation Army Ray and Joan Kroc Center, Expanding the Arts: Live streaming, $10,000

Specialized Needs Recreation, scholarship fund, $7,500

St. Vincent de Paul North Idaho, Health and Well-being, $10,000

Tesh Inc., insulation installation, $20,000


Nina Culver can be reached at

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