When the Grants Program was implemented in 2017, nine permanent endowment funds provided funding of more than $50,000 to the program. This year, 17 endowments, Savanah’s Legacy Fund distributions, anonymous donor grant gifts and a few 2020 returned grant funds generated nearly $130,000 to the grants program. The Oklahoma Disciple Foundation’s Grant Committee and staff reviewed 74 grant applications requesting support for community feeding programs, refugee tutoring and foster care programs, children and youth mission trips and VBS programs, senior adult care programs, educational assistance for pastors, technology assistance for churches and a wide variety of other worthy programs.
The Grant Committee consists of eight volunteer Disciples church members representing northeast, central, southern and western Oklahoma. Members include Oklahoma Disciples Foundation board members, ministers, retired ministers and lay leaders. After a long and fulfilling day discussing grant allocations, the Grant Committee awarded over 82% of the organizations at least their minimum grant request and over 20% received their full funding. Click here to see a list of final 2022 grant awards.
Last year, a new Legacy Initiative within the Grants Program was established. The impetus for the Legacy Initiative is Savanah’s Legacy Fund, a permanent scholarship fund to provide annual tuition assistance for Oklahoma youth to attend a Disciples of Christ sponsored church camp in honor of Savanah (Sam) Michelle Stanley, established by her family. Read Savanah’s story here. All gifts are tax-deductible.
Last year’s Grants Program also touched the hearts of a donor couple who saw a great need to support feeding programs within Oklahoma. Through their generosity, the couple who wish to remain anonymous, donated $5,000 as matching funds to last year’s grantees who received partial funding for their local feeding ministries. The Oklahoma Disciples Foundation board voted to match the couple’s donation with another $5,000, making $10,000 matching funds available to 2021 feeding program grantees. Four of the eleven eligible 2021 grantees applied for and received supplemental feeding matching funds last year. Due to extended COVID restrictions or concern for raising required matching funds, the other grantees opted not to apply for the funding. Rather than reserve the supplemental feeding program funds for a similar matching program this year, the donors and the ODF board approved allocation of the remaining more than $6,000 supplemental feeding program funds for feeding grant requests in 2022.
In 2020, just prior to the COVID pandemic, the Grant Committee was delighted to award more than $90,000 to assist 42 Disciples ministries and missions. The pandemic created a challenge for churches in 2020 due to mandatory church, business and school closures as well as social distancing. However, Disciples churches adapted, modified programs and effectively utilized the Grant Funds to meet the many needs within their communities, especially with feeding and clothing those most vulnerable.
In 2022, 17 permanent endowment funds benefitted the Grants Program for various ministries, programs and missions of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Oklahoma. Within this group, the Children, Youth and Young Adults Endowment provides a portion of grant funds for Oklahoma and Kansas Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) church youth programs. The remaining Grant Endowments support Oklahoma Disciples’ Church ministries locally and missions worldwide.
The Foundation is grateful for the many donors and churches that have supported the Foundation and the Grants Program.
If you would like to be added to our email list for updates on the Foundation’s annual Grants Program, please send your contact information (name, address, city, state, zip, email, phone and church) to . Or, call 405.525.6530 for more information. The deadline for applying for 2022 grants has expired. Checks and grant letters were mailed or hand-delivered on March 16. Check back here for updates on the 2023 Grants Program.
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