By Kathy Chouteau
Calling all Richmond community organizers and beautifiers extraordinaire: The Love Your Block Mini- Grant Program is accepting applications for projects promoting the beautification of our city via volunteer power. Starting today and running through Feb. 26, locals can apply for grant up to $10,000 for projects that are publicly accessible and within the boundaries of the City of Richmond.
The Love Your Block Mini-Grant Program, which is funded through a partnership between the City of Richmond’s Community Services Department and the City Manager’s Office, Economic Development, has $80,000 available for the current grant cycle.
One project during the last Mini-Grant cycle was spurred by Linda Whitmore of the Santa Fe Neighborhood Council, who partnered with Chef Arnon Oren of Anaviv’s Table to offer virtual cooking classes on Zoom to 24 Nystrom Elementary School students. Yet another project spearheaded by Bernadette Roger of the Panandle Annex Neighborhood Council involved a Sidewalk Chalk Art Extravaganza that gathered neighbors to create chalk art in front of their homes to help relieve pandemic-related stress. Check out other past project examples here.
Applicants eligible for the grant include individuals and organizations utilizing a nonprofit fiscal sponsor, organizations utilizing a nonprofit fiscal sponsor, as well as nonprofit organizations with 501(c)(3) tax status.
According to program officials, eligible projects must promote beautification, sustainability, health and safety, community engagement, and/or creation/improvement of a public space; engage at least ten community volunteers to clean-up and beautify Richmond; include at least one community event during which physical clean-up and beautification occurs; and must be completed by April 30, 2022.
Grant costs can encompass project supplies and materials, including food for volunteers, rental/facility fees, permits and insurance, fiscal sponsorship fees, if applicable (up to 10 percent), administration fees (up to 10 percent) and stipends/professional services (up to 30 percent, eligible on case-by-case basis).
For more info about the Love Your Block Mini-Grants, or to apply, click here.