Alli Frank connected with Kate Ristow of The Space about the impact of our WRWF 2022 Grant:
How has the WRWF grant furthered the mission of The Space at this moment in time?
The Wood River Women’s Foundation made it possible for The Space to continue for a successful second year our Forward Learning Scholars Program that provides free, high quality, individualized tutoring, snacks and school supplies to a group of twenty 6th to 9th grade students.
Knowing we have financial security as this program enters its second year has been a game-changer. Furthermore, it allowed us to make the program both more effective and more innovative. Since receiving this grant we have moved to a larger office, and expanded our staff—including hiring a Program Coordinator who organizes scheduling, activities and curriculum, and serves as a liaison between the schools and other community organizations. These organizations include the Hunger Coalition, who provides us with snacks, and the Advocates, who have delivered multiple presentations to our students through their Every Teen Counts program.
Finally, through WRWF, we received a matching grant from the Idaho STEM Action Center, which allowed us to improve and grow our STEM programming. With these funds, we built a rolling STEM cart of open-ended projects and materials, and hired a highly-qualified STEM educator to facilitate STEM-based lessons and activities. Our students love building everything from slime to matchbox cars as they practice the skills they are introduced to in school.
With the support of the WRWF and the greater Blaine County community at-large, where do you see the organization in three years?
In three years we hope to have grown our ability to serve students by increasing our staff and moving to a larger space. Currently, we are limited by staffing and space, and we have a waitlist. It is our goal to always be able to offer a space for each student or family who contacts us. We hope to be a well-known resource for students, families and teachers, so that they never have to wonder how to get help, and so that every student can create an accessible, realistic path to further their education.
What is one BIG HOPE you have for the future of the Wood River Valley?
Our work at The Space has allowed us to foster a diverse community of learners. But it has also made it impossible to ignore the growing equity gap in our community. We hope the Wood River Valley community will put an emphasis on equity and diversity, so that all community members can thrive.
Grantees in the News:
Committee Corner – State of the Valley
Committee Corner for the Education Committee by Jenni Riley
“Being a part of the Education Committee is a substantive way that members can add value to WRWF. Our work is meaningful work and the committee is great fun with leaders like Jenni and Susan!” – Lilian Wu, Education Committee member.
The WRWF Education Committee is thrilled to once again be featured in the 1st Committee Corner of the new year. The purpose of the Education Committee is to present educational opportunities to our members and community that support the mission of WRWF. Our focus is to increase philanthropy by women and provide information that will lead to wiser, more effective giving. Our primary educational event is the State of the Valley winter forum in February, with smaller, more focused events throughout the year as opportunities arise.
Our committee meets only once a month on the last Wednesday from 4:00-5:00pm MT. We meet via zoom with an occasional in-person option during the summer. We would LOVE to have additional members join!
Our 4th Annual Community State of the Valley is coming up on Tuesday, February 28, 2023, at the Community Library in Ketchum. This year’s theme is “Prioritizing infrastructure decisions in a time of growth.” We have panelists representing areas we felt have seen the biggest impact by our growing community which includes the following:
§ Muffy Davis, County Commissioner
§ Brian Yeager, Hailey Public Works
§ Bill McLaughlin, Ketchum Fire Chief
§ TBD in the Public Safety sector
o Moderator – Mike McKenna, ED, Valley Chamber
This is our annual community-facing event. We are once again seeking event underwriters from our member roster and local businesses to provide attendees with take-home materials and increase the audience reach in the community with advertising. Event underwriters will be recognized in:
- Advertising in the Idaho Mountain Express,
- The hard-copy informational booklet at the event,
- Posters on stage with presenters.
Please contact Jenni Riley (email@example.com) if you, too, would like to support this Community Education event.
We hope you are all able to join us either in person or by watching the Live Stream provided by the Community Library. We will send out the Live Stream link as soon as it is available.
Joining the WRWF Education Committee is a great way to meet new members and make a difference in both our own organization and the community through educational events. Contact one of the Co-Chairs for more information. Jenni Riley firstname.lastname@example.org or Susan Passovoy email@example.com.
Cheers to an amazing 2023!
Grants New Process/Dates
The Grants Committee encourages all members to familiarize themselves with our new 2023 Grants processes and deadlines.
The Grants Application window is open for nonprofits to submit a grant application
Feb 6 – March 3
Grants team members evaluate grants, go on on-site visits and prepare presentations
Grants team presentations to determine which applicants will move forward for member voting
Nonprofit Finalist Presentation Meeting (virtual meeting for all members) and member voting begins
Member voting closes
Upcoming Events – WRELC Update
Focus Grant Update
Learn about Significant Progress toward the Focus Grant ‘22 Goals on 2/6/23 at 4:00 PM via zoom with Kathryn Ivers, Project Director of the Wood River Early Learning Collaborative.
In less than five months, Kathryn Ivers convened the Early Learning Advisory Committee. Together they have accomplished the first goals enumerated in the WRWF Focus Grant awarded to the Idaho Association for the Education of Young Children.
- Establish a local Early Learning Advisory Committee (ELAC) and define its governing and operating structure
- Conduct a needs assessment to identify and document the current status of early childcare and education infrastructure at the community level.
Representatives of about 10 organizations, working together on the ELAC, have gathered comprehensive data and are writing a report that will be shared with the community by the end of January 2023.
The report will:
- Quantify the current status of early childhood services in Blaine County
- Characterize the needs of children and families
- Highlight gaps between the two.
This analysis will be the basis for identifying strategic action plan goals to improve childcare and early education in Blaine County, and ultimately, to increase the availability of high-quality and affordable early care and education for families with young children. More about the FG22-23 can be found on the WRWF website here.
A zoom link for this informative presentation will be shared with members by email. The session will be recorded for later viewing by members who cannot attend the live session.
- Jan 24 FieldTrip! To Rotarun and Rota-Rippers program 3-5 pm
- Feb 6 Wood River Early Learning Collaborative Update (Zoom) 4 pm
- Feb 16 New Member Orientation (Zoom) 4-5:15 pm
- Feb 16 Girls on the Run LunaFest Film Festival starts at 5:30 pm
- Feb 28 4th Annual State of the Valley Forum @ The Community Library
- Theme: Prioritizing infrastructure decisions in a time of growth
- Live Stream available (link to come)
- 3:30-5:30 pm
- Mar 2 Après Ski Tea at the Gail Severn Gallery
We are delighted to extend a warm WRWF welcome to new members who joined this month!
Mary Ann Snyder
New WRWF members are invited to provide photos and a bit of information about themselves to share in the News Brief. We have so many interesting members and it is fun to read about everyone’s background. Thanks so much and we look forward to meeting you soon.
New Members Spotlight
Grantee – Senior Connection – Volunteers Needed
Meals on Wheels Drivers Needed for The Senior Connection!
The Senior Connection is looking for weekly or monthly volunteers to drive meals to the wonderful seniors of our valley. Meals on Wheels drivers take one of three routes: North, South, and Hailey. They usually arrive between 10 am and 3 pm. For more information reach out to Brit by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and check out their website here.
Thank you, Sponsors.
And, thank YOU for signing up with Amazon Smile
We are grateful for our sponsors and extend a hearty WRWF thank you to Graybird Foundation, Little Caesars and Zions Bank!
Thank you, Contributors!
Thank you to this month’s News Brief contributors:
Alli Frank, Carol Hoffman, Heidi Marcus, Rebecca Ybarra Palma, Sandy McCullough, Louisa Moats, Karissa Price Rico, Jenni Riley, Sarah Shepard, Leslie Silva, Renee Spooner