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RSF Foundation awards grants

RANCHO SANTA FE — A few months ago, the Rancho Santa Fe Foundation began receiving its grant applications.  Following a rigorous protocol, it recently chose its recipients.

Grants for 2014 were awarded to the Rancho Santa Fe Historical Society, Rancho Santa Fe Library Guild and the Helen Woodward Animal Center.

Debbie Anderson, programs director at the RSF Foundation, pointed out that all Rancho Santa Fe community-based nonprofits were invited to participate in the 2014 Community Grants Program.

“The Grants and Projects Committee selected these three organizations primarily for their emphasis on connecting with the community through the programs that received funding,” Anderson said.

The Rancho Santa Fe Historical Society received $5,000.  According to Anderson, this grant will help fund the digitization of the archival collection and create an educational program for third grade students.

“This project supports the Historical Society’s goal to provide for both the preservation and accessibility of the collections to the Rancho Santa Fe community and to connect residents to Rancho Santa Fe and its past.”

A total of $2,100 was awarded to the Rancho Santa Fe Library Guild. The Library Guild raises funds to provide services to the Rancho Santa Fe Branch Library, Anderson said, beyond the budget of the San Diego County Library.

Anderson wants people to know that this particular grant will completely fund the Guild’s 2015 Children’s Summer Reading Program.

The last grant recipient was the Helen Woodward Animal Center in the amount of $5,000 which was geared toward its Therapeutic Riding program.  Anderson shared that the Helen Woodward Animal Center has afforded this therapy to both children and adults with special challenges and needs.

“The program of riding lessons and care of a therapy horse is provided at minimal cost or full scholarship to participants. The Rancho Santa Fe Foundation grant of $5,000 helps to underwrite the Center’s cost for over 40 lessons,” she said.  Anderson continued, “The program is based on the belief that all individuals, regardless of physical or mental challenges, deserve to feel welcomed and connected to their community.”

Grant opportunities were provided up to $5,000 each; and, a total of five applications were filed with the Foundation. According to Anderson, its Grants and Projects Committee reviewed the proposals for specifics such as program details, community impact, number of people it would serve and financial viability.

“Grants were awarded to the programs that best connected with and served the community,” she said.  “The Rancho Santa Fe Foundation and its donors have given nearly $6 million in the last 15 years alone to support organizations in Rancho Santa Fe.”

Anderson pointed out that the Rancho Santa Fe Foundation focuses on supporting the community and helping to facilitate a collaboration which may require financial leverage. And the three nonprofits awarded in 2014 were a crystal clear example of this mission.

“We continue to strive for collaborative projects that enhance and connect the community,” she said.