POTSDAM — Nonprofit organizations in the greater Potsdam area can compete for up to $10,000 as part of a new grant program being offered through a new family legacy fund.

The grant funding is coming from The John and Dorotha VanNess Family Fund of the Northern New York Community Foundation, which was established in 2018.

This is a permanent legacy fund within the Community Foundation and there will be funding annually in perpetuity.

This family legacy fund was established at the Community Foundation in 2018 to honor and recognize the lifelong community spirit of John S. and Dorotha T. VanNess, according to a release from the Northern New York Community Foundation, Inc.

“Mr. and Mrs. VanNess were actively engaged in the Potsdam community for decades through local business and volunteer efforts. The fund was created by Mr. and Mrs. VanNess’ daughter — Susan J. Sewall — who admired her parents’ civic mindedness,” the release stated. “After passing away in 2017, Mrs. Sewall established this permanent fund through her legacy planning to support the greater Potsdam region forever.”

Northern New York Community Foundation, Inc. Executive Director Rande S. Richardson said first preference for the awarded grant will be given to those who are 501(c)(3) organizations; however it is also open to churches and schools, as long as the proposal demonstrates clear, broad public benefit.

They are also required to partner with an eligible nonprofit, municipality or local agency to serve as a fiscal sponsor at the time a grant proposal is submitted.

“If there is a program, project or initiative that another community group wishes to pursue, they should contact the Community Foundation for more information on identifying appropriate fiscal sponsors,” Mr. Richardson said.

While the Community Foundation has funded and will continue to fund projects in the Potsdam area from its general fund, the VanNess Fund enables programs, projects and initiatives that might not otherwise be supported through other sources, Mr. Richardson said.

“We are seeing a trend in geographic-specific giving, which allows donors to direct their intentions to benefit a specific community, with flexibility to address needs over time as they arise, which is a cornerstone of the community foundation model,” he said. “Over the next six months, we plan to announce at least two other similar funds which have been created for the benefit of the people and places of St. Lawrence County.”

Agencies seeking funding through this opportunity should contact Max DelSignore, Community Foundation assistant director, to obtain the grant application or learn more about this grant opportunity to enhance the quality of life in the Potsdam area. He may be reached at (315) 782-7110 or max@nnycf.org.

The deadline to apply for this funding opportunity is Nov. 15. Grant awards will be determined by the end of the year.

For more information about the Northern New York Community Foundation, visit www.nnycf.org.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

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