This year at its annual spring competitive grant cycle award party, the Community Foundation of Teton Valley gave out over $50,000 to local nonprofits and the school district.
During this grant cycle, the CFTV received 33 applications requesting over $133,000 of funding. The grants committee was tasked with narrowing that down and eventually settled on 16 projects totaling $51,000. The competitive grants are made possible by the Tin Cup Challenger fund and by private donors.
With nearly a quarter of all valley households giving during the Tin Cup Challenge, one of the goals of the grants committee is to address a wide spectrum of needs in the community, from social services to conservation to education and recreation.
“You can imagine the amount of deliberation that goes into this process,” said CFTV executive director Tim Adams. “Every single application is merited and we wish we could do all $133,000 of funding.”
Taking home the largest sum for one application was Teton Valley Trails and Pathways, a member of the collaborative Teton Creek Corridor Project, which seeks to enhance and protect the Teton Creek wildlife habitat between Driggs and Alta. TVTAP received $9,000 from CFTV to begin work on a crushed gravel path outside of Driggs. On the recreation side, TVTAP also received funding for a new groomer in order to keep up with the valley’s expanding winter trail network and increased usage. Mountain Bike the Tetons is funding a program director for its summer youth mountain bike series. Teton Rock Gym and Teton Valley Aquatics are also aiming to serve the valley’s youth, with more kid-friendly equipment at the rock gym and a community learn-to-swim program through TVA.
In the realm of education, the school district received grants for improved literacy and for art in the ABC afterschool program. The new Teton Valley branch of Girls Actively Participating received $5,000 to continue building the program, and the Education Foundation of Teton Valley will keep supporting kids in need by supplying them with free glasses, hearing aids, backpacks, and other essentials.
The Community Resource Center and the Downtown Driggs Association both received grants to upgrade the technology necessary for operations. Teton Valley Mental Health Care is helping to normalize and de-stigmatize mental health by leading behavioral therapy groups for students.
Teton Valley Community Recycling will be launching a community composting program to increase the diversion of food waste from the landfill. Friends of the Teton River, which has done free well-water nitrate testing for years, can now offer additional tests for people who are concerned about their well-water quality. With $5,000 of grant money, PAWS of Jackson Hole will be able to provide financial assistance for Teton County, Idaho residents with veterinary bills. Representing PAWS at the awards party was Bullet, the dog who was shot several times but survived thanks to the medical fund program.
The next CFTV grant cycle will open this fall with its youth philanthropy program. To find out more about the Tin Cup Challenge, visit www.cftetonvalley.org.