(Lynchburg, VA – June 15, 2023) - The Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation (GLCF or Foundation) announced the 2023 winners for the annual $100,000 Century Fund and one-time $50,000 Fifty Fund.

The $100,000 Century Fund grant winner is Lynchburg Grows. Funds awarded will help transform a vacant historic building into a multi-purpose space for community education and engagement. The selection committee lauded Lynchburg Grow’s work in providing job opportunities for disabled community members and ensuring access to healthy, locally-grown food for low-income and food-insecure families in Lynchburg and surrounding counties.

Lynchburg Grows Executive Director Shelley Blades said, “The completion of this project will help Lynchburg Grows establish a stable on-site location for hosting classes, visitors, and community-focused services to reach more people struggling with food insecurity.”

A total of 37 nonprofits applied for the Century Fund. Finalists for the Century Fund included Bower Center for the Arts, Campbell County Training School Complex, Mary Bethune Academy and Park View Community Mission.

The $50,000 Fifty Fund grant winner is the Academy Center of the Arts (ACOA). Funds awarded will support a new program, “Opening Minds through Art.” The ACOA will soon offer this national, best-practice therapeutic intervention designed by Scripps Gerontology Center at Miami University in Ohio that promotes independence, social engagement, and self-expression among people with dementia.

“The greater Lynchburg community has a total of 11 memory care facilities with close to 1,000 occupants. The Academy will be the first organization in the region to provide this service to the area’s assisted living and memory care facilities, and is also our first foray into offering a therapeutic art program,” said Academy Center of the Arts Chief Executive Officer Geoffrey Kershner.

The Fifty Fund grant is a one-time award created in honor of the 50th Anniversary of the Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation. Both grants were open to local nonprofits working towards transformative new programs, facilities, and impact in the greater Lynchburg area.

A total of 43 nonprofits applied for the Fifty Fund. Finalists for the Fifty Fund included Avoca Museum, Brook Hill Retirement Center for Horses, Jubilee Family Development Center, Lynchburg Grows, Mary Bethune Academy and University of Lynchburg.

GLCF President & CEO Kathryn Yarzebinski said, “We are thrilled to be able to award these substantial grants for such exciting projects. All of the nonprofit applicants are doing important work in our community, so it was a challenge to choose the recipients. In the end, Lynchburg Grows and the Academy Center of the Arts rose to the top because of the transformational nature of their projects.” 

Since 1972, the GLCF has granted nearly $31 million to a wide variety of local nonprofit organizations including human services, animal welfare, arts, education, and historical preservation organizations.

In addition to the Century Fund and the Fifty Fund, the GLCF offers scholarships for local students and two grant cycles for nonprofits annually: fall and spring. The next grant cycle will be offered in September 2023. Last year, the GLCF awarded $2,092,907 to 185 charitable organizations, and will distribute even more in the current fiscal year. 

For more information on how to establish a scholarship or to make a gift to one of the existing funds at the Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation, please visit www.lynchburgfoundation.org.

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The Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation’s primary mission is to enhance the quality of life in the communities served by the establishment of permanent endowments for the city of Lynchburg and the counties of Amherst, Appomattox, Bedford and Campbell, with the income distributed annually to charitable organizations within the community.

It's Our Mission

The Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation works to solve our community’s greatest challenges by providing grants and scholarships, and by helping individuals, families, and organizations create their charitable legacy.

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  •   The Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation
      1100 Commerce Street
    Lynchburg, VA 24504
  •   434.845.6500
  •   434.845.6530 fax

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