Community Foundation of Louisville announces first round of Sparking Change Mini-Grants recipients

The Community Foundation of Louisville launched its Sparking Change Mini-Grants program in February 2024 and recently awarded its first round of grants to three different organizations. Supported by the Foundation’s Action Areas, the Sparking Change Mini-Grant program awards three $1,000 grants each month to organizations whose operating budgets are under $250,000. The Foundation is thrilled to invest in these organizations and share how they are addressing Louisville’s most pressing needs.


Louisville’s People Grant Recipient: Elevate Louisville

The Louisville’s People action area supports the arts, public spaces, schools, museums, education, and leadership development and retention.

Elevate Louisville Executive Director D’Andrea Williams applied for funding to support the promotion of education and awareness of conflict resolution and effective communication with students at The Academy at Shawnee. Through Elevate Louisville’s program, the organization partners with The Academy at Shawnee to provide character and leadership development, mentoring, and more. Elevate Louisville’s mission is to build long-term, life-changing relationships with urban youth, equipping them to thrive and contribute to their community. Through their collaboration with StageOne Family Theatre, Elevate Louisville aims to provide resources and workshops through arts education focusing on respect and showing empathy to equip our students with the necessary skills to resolve conflicts peacefully. With this grant’s support, the Academy at Shawnee estimates it will work with 150 students through the next calendar year.


Louisville’s Prosperity Grant Recipient: Robert Jamison Ministries

The Louisville’s Prosperity action area supports access to capital for businesses, jobs, and community-driven land development.

Working alongside Elevate Louisville, the Sparking Change Mini-Grant will fuel Robert Jamison Ministries’ (RJM) incentive-based education training and eliminate barriers for the students at the Shawnee Community Center to achieve prosperity outside of the school system. The organization provides job readiness curriculum activities, including a career assessment, developing work values, establishing short-term and long-term goals, and creating a five-year plan based on the individual student’s level of learning. While each student comes from a unique background, Executive Director Yvette Goodwin-Jamison shared that RJM works to meet each youth’s experience and learning style. The organization’s program estimates serving up to 75 students each year.


Louisville’s Well-Being: National Parkinsons Institute

The Louisville’s Well-Being action area invests in supporting violence reduction, food access, stable housing, affordable healthcare, and childcare.

The National Parkinsons Institute’s mission supports the fight against Parkinson’s Disease by improving quality of life through exercise, education, research, and awareness. Located in Louisville, the Institute has provided excellent programs to people with Parkinson’s for over a decade through their programs Rock Steady Boxing, Fight Back with Fitness, yoga classes, support groups, and more. President and CEO Eric Richardson and Vice President Erika Ganong applied for the Sparking Change Mini-Grant to allow the organization to buy needed equipment to facilitate a new free program for the local Parkinson’s community. This new program is expected to serve an additional 40 – 100 individuals per week and will increase the total number of people served to 5,000 a year.


Do you know an organization interested in this opportunity? Share the Sparking Change Mini-Grant application today.