Community Foundation of Elkhart County awards $934,900 to nonprofits

There are hundreds of nonprofit organizations in Michiana, but some in Elkhart County have just been awarded thousands of dollars in grant money to help improve the community.

The Community Foundation of Elkhart County awarded $934,900 in grants to more than 30 nonprofits.

The foundation partners with donors and awards grant money to nonprofits that they see fit or give local students scholarships.

“We have several different types of funds,” said Shannon Oakes, the foundation’s Senior Program Officer.

“We have some that are donor driven we they’re called donor advised funds where the donors actually contact us and say this is where I’d like those dollars to go. Then, we have some funds which many individuals are familiar with which is the unrestricted funds,” Oakes said.

They award organizations in cycles. This cycle, community investment grants, good neighbor grants and rapid response grants were awarded. Various nonprofits like county departments, colleges and museums were awarded to put towards projects and development.

“The Goshen Art House is a great example of an organization that’s new and up and coming it’s kind of changing the dynamic of the Goshen community,” Oakes said. It is now looking to start up a new location in Elkhart, so we’re going to help them find a new location in downtown Elkhart and hopefully get that started here,” Oakes said.

They started back in 1989 and since then, they have awarded approximately $78.5 million to over 400 nonprofits. The foundation staff feels grateful to be able to lend a helping hand.

“The people here like embrace each other they love each other and they will stand up for each other,” Oakes said.

“I wish everybody in this community had the opportunity to speak to these organizations on a routine basis like I do, because before I started here, I didn’t realize how much good we did in this community,” Oakes said.

If you work with a nonprofit or are looking to start one and need a grant, you can go to

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