Kansas City Art Institute (KCAI) recently received a grant for $65,000 from the Richard J. Stern Foundation for the Arts to support KCAI’s ceramics department and annual fund, a general operating fund that addresses the gap between student tuition and the actual costs of educating students. The ceramics program is critical for achieving our mission of preparing gifts students to transform the world creatively through art and design.

KidsTLC, Inc. was recently awarded a $60,000 grant from the John W. and Effie E. Speas Memorial Trust to grow and improve our current technology infrastructure that will help us provide better care for our low income/underserved young clients. The grant funds will directly support a portion of our 2020 Technology Improvement project, which includes replacing/upgrading staff laptops and desktop computers, a facility management solution software, security cameras, and a payroll/HRS system.  Use of up-to-date laptops, enhanced technology and upgraded cameras will give these staff the flexibility and mobility they need to document client information on the spot and ease their administrative burden. This also gives all staff the option to work and document at home or anywhere they desire, so they can be more focused on direct services to clients while they are on the floor. Moreover, this capability will also give supervisors more access to real-time data on clients, so they can address issues faster, have more insight and information during treatment meetings, and coach staff appropriately.

My wife, Julie Assel, likes writing federal grants. I’ve been told that’s odd, and I guess I can understand why. Consider your average small-to-medium foundation grant. It might be a 2-3-page letter with an attached organizational budget, maybe your 501c3 letter and a board roster, but nothing you haven’t seen ten or a hundred times before. On the more complex end of what we normally experience, you’ve got agencies like the Health Forward Foundation in Kansas City asking for all that plus a logic model and theory of change indicator chart, with a 15-page narrative limit on certain grants. Fifteen single-spaced pages is nothing to sneeze at. Federal grants can have even higher page limits and even more attachments. The SF-424 alone can take more time to fill out than some grants can take to write.

KidsTLC, Inc. recently received a grant for $50,000 from the REACH Healthcare Foundation to support core operating expenses. Core operating support from the REACH Foundation allows KidsTLC to use the funds where they are most needed and keeps our programs operating and sustainable. KidsTLC is well-equipped to serve and impact the lives of vulnerable youth and their families. At the heart of KidsTLC’s core values is the drive and desire to constantly improve programming, especially when a gap in services presents itself in our community. We increase access through partnerships in the community and by continuing to seek out ways we can extend our expertise and services into the community (both by placing providers at off site locations and offering training to youth serving professions such as medical professionals and educators).

United Inner City Services (UICS) was recently awarded a $75,000 grant from the H&R Block Foundation and/or Marion and Henry Bloch Family Foundation to support the infant and toddler program at Metro Center. For more than 50 years, United Inner City Services (UICS) has served the Kansas City community by addressing challenges facing families in the urban core. Today, UICS carries out its mission of “Building Bridges. Inspiring Minds. Impacting Futures.” through the St. Mark Center, UICS’s primary service and one of Kansas City’s leading early education programs. The licensed and accredited St. Mark Center serves 150 children, along with their families, annually through early childhood education and wrap-around services.

Comprehensive Mental Health Services, Inc. was recently awarded a $50,000 grant from the REACH Core Operating Grant to support their core operating expenses. Funding from the REACH Core Operating Grant will support CMHS’s goal to help individuals and families who experience emotional and coping problems (inability to handle everyday...