Rasmuson Foundation & ACF announce the second year of funding for Alaska youth camps
Alaska organizations can once again seek support to create quality experiences and expand access to youth camps around the state. The Camps Initiative is the result of a partnership between Rasmuson Foundation and The Alaska Community Foundation to provide well-staffed, safe environments for Alaska’s youth to enjoy. The project is also meant to offset the pandemic’s distressing effects on youth programs in the past two years. Nonprofits, tribal groups, faith-based organizations, and local governments are all eligible for awards.
The deadline to apply is March 24.
This year’s effort is built on the success of the 2021 partnership, which included the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services and the Municipality of Anchorage. When first announced by Rasmuson Foundation, the Camps Initiative received a flood of requests from nonprofit organizations, tribes, cities, and faith-based organizations. The Alaska Community Foundation created a collaborative fund to broaden the partnership and ultimately awarded 85 grants topping $1.5 million in 2021.
Reporting the grant’s impact in 2021, Kenai’s Challenger Learning Center CEO Marnie A. Olcott said, “COVID-19 has had a huge impact on our community, both in the social and emotional needs of our youth and in economic terms for our families. Challenger Learning Center used our Camps Initiative Grant funds in a variety of ways to help continue our mission of inspiring students through science, technology, engineering, and math.” She continued, “In addition, these funds allowed us to offer scholarships, making our camps available to every child who wanted to attend, regardless of financial situation.”
“We are so grateful for Rasmuson Foundation’s foresight in establishing this uplifting initiative and giving our youth something to look forward to this summer,” said Nina Kemppel, CEO of The Alaska Community Foundation. “Last year, the program made such a positive impact on the health and well-being of Alaska’s youth and their families, and we are pleased to have the chance to continue the support this year.”
“The Camps Initiative started with a simple idea: Help more kids go to camp, and enrich their experience,” said Rasmuson Foundation President and CEO Diane Kaplan. “We were encouraged to see how camps adapted to the challenges of the pandemic with virtual programming and new strategies that allowed camp to happen while keeping kids safe.”
This year, organizations can apply for up to $15,000 per camp location, with a potential total of $45,000. To learn more about the Camps Initiative and apply, go to https://alaskacf.org/funds/camps-initiative/.